Unfortunately, the roofing industry is not exempt from shady dealers and scammers…
Learning to spot them before they take advantage of you is the best way to avoid ending up massively out of pocket for sub-standard or non-existent services.
Here are a few clues to help you spot a cowboy…
Roofing Scams – What To Look Out For
Year after year homeowners fall victim to roofing scams.
These scams leave individuals and families short of money and with a poorly repaired roof.
Scammers will typically target budget conscious homeowners trying to manage home repairs without breaking the bank.
A scammer often does fast work with low quality materials, or sometimes, simply take them money and run.
Your roof is arguably the most important feature of your home.
It works hard to keep the elements out.
When a roof becomes damaged, homeowners cannot afford to waste time getting it repaired.
This urgency is something that leaves a homeowner vulnerable to scam artists. Unethical roofers can be hard to spot, but there are some clear warning signs.
Keep an eye out for these common roofing scams;
Door To Door Salesmen
A large scam in the roofing industry involves a door to door salesman showing up at your house and promising a free roof inspection or repair.
You get a knock on your door from a roofer who claims he was just “passing by” and couldn’t help but notice the damage on your roof.
He points out some damage on your roof that you cannot really see and highlights this to you as a huge problem.
The man may even offer to take a closer look at it for you, once he has your permission to go up on your roof, a scammer will fabricate damage by tearing shingles, hitting the roof with a hammer or can even present a photo of a roof that is not yours.
Some scammers can even claim there is damage when there is none.
In these circumstances it is best to exercise vigilance and not sign any paperwork until you verify the legitimacy of the company.
If a roofer requests to carry out a free appraisal of your roof, please make sure that they are willing to present their credentials first.
A reputable roofing company will have no problem with supplying any details you request to verify their identity and standard of work.
A scam roofing contractor will secure a job by offering a bid that is far lower than other roofers in the area, only for unexpected costs and problems to arise later that cause the price to go up.
If you have a few proposals to compare, do not just look at the price, also look at the scope of the work provided.
A reputable roofer should provide a bid for all roofing issues upfront, with the only exception being structural issues and wood replacement that cannot be seen during the initial inspection.
Any roofer that says he can provide a discount due to having left over materials from previous jobs should be treated with caution.
This is a way of convincing you that you are receiving a great deal and there is nothing to say that the materials aren’t stolen or of a poor standard.
One of the most common roofing scams occurs when a company agrees to repair or replace a roof but asks the customer to pay for the materials and labour upfront.
Once payment has been secured, the company then does a disappearing act with your money!
There are some genuine businesses that go door to door and a reasonable up front cost would probably be around 30% of the total cost of the job.
Roofing Scams – Avoid Them
If you have had an experience of any of the above before, did you manage to notice the signs before signing up? We would love to know!