Any time you require roof work, knowing who to trust may be difficult. Actually, in current times more than in the past, homeowners nationwide are losing their hard earned money to scams.
Any time you require roof work, knowing who to trust may be difficult. Actually, in current times more than in the past, homeowners nationwide are losing their hard earned money to scams. If you have concerns about roofing scams, here are a few things to watch out for in order to be on the safe side.
But, do not worry yourself to death, every roofer in our network is screened then rated for quality and reliability. For more information, check out our website: https://allroof.us/.
1 – A significant deposit upfront
Anytime you hire a roofing company that’s reputable, they will not require you to pay up front for the entire replacement or repair. When contracting a roofing company for an inspection, they should not ask you for any money ahead of time. Multiple requests a certain payment up front – generally enough that will cover materials’ cost – but if they request more than that, take it as a red flag that something is not right. Ask roofing companies up front about their payment policy in order to protect yourself. If they only request a minimal fee before beginning, things should go well. But, if they ask that you pay more, do not give them your credit card info or write them a check. Research the roofing company a bit further to ensure that it is legitimate and recognized in addition to having positive reviews.
2 – Not scheduling payments based on milestones, only based on milestones
Look out for roofing companies that set up a calendar-based payment schedule after you pay your original deposit. To provide peace of mind, the majority of reputable companies require you to make extra payments once certain milestones have been reached. Roofing companies do this because a payment schedule based on time is not very effective. At the end of the day, if you are required to pay a percentage of the total week by week and there is an entire week of rain, you’ll have to make payments for work that has not yet been completed.
3 – Lower rates offered for advertising opportunities
Although a number of roofing contractors offer discounts to some homeowners who accept an agreement to provide advertising in their yards for a specific period of time for the roofing company that has replaced or repaired roofs, the total quote should not be lowered by more than several hundred dollars overall. A common roofing scam in the US and the rest of the world leads homeowners to believe they will achieve their project for a significantly lower rate by promising to advertise their roofing company. Although this may appear reasonable and the company might even have a lawn sign ready to go, it is probable that such a roofing company will not do a good job.
4 – Lack of employment contract
Certain scammers attempt to gain the trust of their victims by proposing to provide work with no contract and offering the impression this will work to the benefit of the homeowner. You may even consider this to be a fine idea; if your contractor does not provide good work, no contract exists making you pay the full amount anyway. Scammers have no interest in benefiting you; roofing companies do this for their own benefit. This allows them to take any steps they wish to once receiving your original deposit. Maybe you would like more costly slate tiles for your roof and even paid the company to purchase them for you. If one day you arrive home and observe asphalt shingles, you will not be pleased. Regrettably, without a contract to show the specific service you paid for and exactly how much you paid for it, you are not likely to receive a refund in the end.
Do not even think of hiring a contractor who is trying to persuade you to skip the contract. Insist upon a contract and read every single word prior to signing it. If the roofing company refuses to give you one after you’ve asked for it, do not hire them.
5 – Salesman going door-to-door after a natural disaster
Plenty of severe weather hits the US, making it a major target for true scammers who have never in their lives touched a roof. These people visit neighborhoods affected by hailstorms, high winds, and tornadoes, going door to door, offering discounted services. They will likely sympathetically apologize for your experience then tell you they’ve traveled from afar to take care of your home at a discounted rate.
One easy manner in which to avoid this scam altogether is by never paying money to a contractor who has called suddenly or simply shown up on your doorstep. Be certain you are in charge by only dealing with roofing companies that you yourself have reached out to. In this way, you are able to determine which roofing company you wish to contract by researching thoroughly in advance to ensure the company is reputable and will not scam you.
6 – Vanishing roofers
Prior to paying an initial deposit, your contractor should provide you with a suggested project schedule. Obviously, certain things will not go to plan as weather is not easy to predict and can change as well. After your deposit has been paid, your contractor should try hard to keep on schedule, if weather permits. If you find yourself constantly looking out the window on a day full of sunshine and wondering for what reason your roofing contractor is not there, it is possible there is a scammer trying to take advantage of you. Certain scammers will receive a down payment from you, turn up a few times, then basically disappear forever.
7 – Added pressure to “Act Now”.
Scammers are smart and are aware that they are better off getting “in” early. For this reason, many roofing companies utilize “high-pressure tactics” that convince you to pay up prior to them providing under par work or even disappearing altogether. The most common scenario includes a consumer who accidentally contacts a roofing company found online or in the phone book. The representative who answers your call might ask about other bids you may have received then wait for your yes or no response.
Keep in mind that a roofing company that is reputable would never require you to pay for something online or over the phone without assisting you first. Additionally, the majority of legitimate roofing companies will not work hard to undercut quotes from other companies. If their quote is actually more than that of the competition, and you bring it up, they will likely tell you the reasons they charge more but not take back their original offer in order to become the lowest bidder.
8 – A constantly changing price
Scammers tend to be anxious to get your money, and if close attention is paid, you may be able to spot such desperation. A fluctuating price is among the largest red flags warning that you are soon to be the victim of a rooftop scam. Some experts refer to this as an “elevator ride.” In a scam of this type, in order to tempt you, the scammer may provide you with a quote that is substantially lower than those of other area companies. After the work starts, the roofing company will come upon some kind of “issue” and demand much more money. A short time after this, you pay said roofing company significantly more than you would have paid the competition, even if absolutely nothing is going on.
Qualified roofing companies have many projects to keep them busy year round and are rarely “desperate” to receive your business. Additionally, they often provide you with the total project cost prior to getting started. Even though certain situations may present themselves that increase a project’s cost (as in, a roofing company encounters rotten trusses once they remove the old roofing), this situation is not common. Reputable companies will likely talk to you about this ahead of time. They will provide you with a price, yet they will also, based on your specific design, let you know about some hiccups they may encounter that could cause the price to increase.
9 – Collectors of insurance checks
If a homeowner’s insurance policy covers their roof damage and you file a repairs claim, your insurance company will likely write you a check that will pay for the start-up expenses. The company expects the homeowner to use that check for the hiring of a contractor who can handle the job then bill the insurance company when the project is finished. Sadly, scammers know about these checks and specifically seek them. These crooks will appear, offer a low bid, potentially sign a contract, then quickly cash the check and vanish into thin air.
How can you easily avoid a scam like this? Be sure not to immediately hand your insurance check over. Although it isn’t uncommon for even top roofing companies to require a deposit of some sort, they should not make you pay it until your supplies have been delivered. Once you have witnessed the on-site delivery of asphalt, tar, shingles, and various other roofing materials required to finish your project, go ahead and pay the deposit to the roofing company. At the very worst, you will have the necessary materials to continue even if the contractor never returns.
10 – Fraudulent identity theft
Lastly, you must be as or more careful with your identity as you are with your money. In certain instances, scammers have no interest in insurance check or advance collection – they only seek your bank account information, address, date of birth, and social security number. With these elements, they will be able to claim tax benefits and credits, register for credit cards in your name, and even empty your accounts. Although recovery from a theft of several hundred dollars is possible, recovery from identity fraud can take months or even years.
In today’s world, roofing scams are not unusual, which means that thousands of victims are targeted each year. Being aware of the 10 warning signs listed above can help you to avoid being the victim of a scam and also make sure that you identify and contract a reputable roofing company that will work its best to deliver affordable prices and top high quality service.