When you hire a contractor for roof repair or roof replacement, you want the best quality for a fair price. After all, what good is an expensive, poor quality roof that is unattractive and unable to shield your house from the elements? When you notice or suspect any damages to your roof, it’s best to contact a roofing contractor as soon as possible.
However, it’s important to know that there are many roofing contractors that aren’t the most genuine with their tactics. Many are notorious for scamming you through various methods. How can you tell the difference between the scam artists and legitimate contractors? Here is a list of the top ten most common roofing scams, un-reputable and deceptive roofing companies use to scam you out of your money and quality service.
Most Common Roofing Scams
Door to Door Salesmen
These roofing contractors move from door to door in almost any neighborhood, offering their services to every house, regardless of whether their roof is damaged or not. They try to persuade you through various means, like showing you photographs of the “damage” and offering a free inspection.
However, these are only tactics used to persuade you into hiring a roofing contractor that will provide services that do more harm than good. Oftentimes these canvassers will often lie, saying that they’ve been “working on a house in your neighborhood” Politely decline their service before closing the door or ask for a business card. Make sure to check out the company’s website and see their customer reviews to determine whether or not they are a reputable contractor. It should be easy to tell whether or not you should choose this roofing contractor based on reviews.
Much like door to door salesmen, storm chasers will come knocking at your front door, but these scammers only appear after particularly bad weather in attempt to take advantage of your recent misfortune.” They insist that your roof has been damaged after the bad weather subsides and that it needs immediate repairs. Don’t fall for their scam as they might deliberately tear up parts of your roof to simulate damage. Just as with general door to door salesmen, politely decline them before closing the door. You can call a qualified roofing contractor at any time so there is no need to get the immediate repairs storm chasers offer.
Some roofing contractors try to pressure you into buying a one time deal, often trying to force you to sign papers or agree to a certain term. Avoid these pressures at all costs. This is just an aggressive tactic to get you to buy their product. Some may think it’s a good idea to just give in to their demands, but then you may ben setting yourself up to be scammed into shoddy work on your roof or even a roof in worse condition than before.
An even worse result is you having to pay an expensive bill for a roofing disaster. Again, do not not submit to the pressure. If they get too pushy and annoying, don’t waste your time listening to them and swiftly, but politely, close the door. Consider another reputable roofing contractor that won’t pressure you into quickly agree to a free estimate.
High Down Payment
Some roofing contractors ask you to pay the full price up front or demand a large down payment. This is a giant red flag that you are being horribly scammed. This tactic is used as an assurance that a manipulative roofing contractor can perform shoddy roofing repair or replacement with no financial consequences. A qualified and reputable roofing contractor will never ask for money up front and instead will ensure in the contract that full payment is due at the end of the service. This is a guarantee that if the services provided aren’t to your liking, you don’t owe money for a roof that isn’t top quality. Avoiding roofing contractors who ask for money up front is extremely important so you aren’t scammed out of thousands of dollars. One way to avoid this is either trying to negotiate a fair price with this kind of contractor or simply going online, checking for reviews of the best roofing contractors, and choosing one of these options.
Most people tend to go with the lowest bid possible because budgeting is the most important factor for them. But it’s important to remember that the lowest bids, especially those that are significantly lower than other roofing contractors, equate to a roofing contractors that will perform poor work on your roof, and even possibly leave it in worse shape than before.
But, oppositely, this doesn’t mean you should always go for the highest priced bidder, it simply means that you should compare your list of roofing contractors to one another first, then select the best option that provides the best service at the most fair price.
Some scammers start off with a cheap bid, but then will increase the price the more they work on your roof. This is a clever scam that can be hard to recognize when you first sign the contract. Many homeowners don’t realize the price can skyrocket immediately without their notice. A qualified roofing contractor always offers a fixed price. They budget the project up front to determine how much the materials, tools, and labor needed cost without having to go re-check the numbers. If a roofing contractor raises the service fee over time even, re-negotiate for a better price. If they refuse and you end up paying more for less quality work or a project that takes longer than expected then make sure to alert others about the fraudulent company. Review the company online and call them out for their scam artistry to prevent homeowners who are considering roof repair from hiring these contractors.
One of the worst scenarios to end up in is becoming a victim of scam artist contractors where you detect roofing problems once you’ve paid the fee and it’s now too late to go back and fix them. Some scammers won’t complete all the repairs that were asked for in the contract.
Inadequate repair can be hard to spot if the scammer manages to cover up the real damage and pass it off as finished, but you can quickly diagnose the problem yourself. Make sure you have taken pictures of your damaged roof before the work is done and after. If you go up to the top of your roof after the work is done and check the quality, you can determine whether you’ve been scammed or not. You may also find out out later when more problems arise from the roof and you’re back where you started from before using the contractor.you have to call for another roofing contractor. Make sure you ask for a check through every now and then, followed by a full blown inspection at the end of the project to make sure everything is in place.
Unnecessary Roof Repairs
Sometimes, some roofing contractors do too many repairs, rather than too little. They either tear up parts of your roof before you fully discuss the damage with them, or even unnecessarily repair every part of the roof. This scam can slap you in the face with outrageous prices for unnecessary and damaging services. Worst of all, it can lead to further roofing damage down the line. Periodically checking the progress of the roofing project could prevent prevent your contractor from duping you into thinking you’re getting the best quality service. Rather, you can redirect the contractor’s project plan, or fire them before they provide unnecessary additions or cause further damage to your roof. If you choose to continue with the contractor, always follow up with a post-project inspection to make sure all repairs were done correctly.
As previously mentioned, many scammers can overcharge. To prevent being left with a hefty bill, always make sure to find around 5 contractors you will bid on. Compare their quality of services, details of contract, and service prices. Then, make the best decision to hire the right roofing contractor. If you don’t shop around, you may not even know you are being scammed into a higher price than other roofing contractors charge.
You will either compromise for the best service or a busted budget. Word of mouth recommendations are also a great way to search for local roofing contractors. You can use a reputable website, such as the Better Business Bureau. Also be sure to check multiple contractors to determine the pricing before you contact any of them, as this can save you a lot of money.
Free Roof Inspection
Don’t be fooled by the less reputable roofing contractors that offer a free roof inspection. Some of them are scammers and can actually do more harm to your roof than good by tearing out shingles and punching in holes before showing you the original damage. Of course, not all free roof inspections are like that, but they can be a warning sign that the contractor is a scammer. If any of the scammers use the techniques described above, it’s better to be suspicious and decline rather than let them provide “evidence” of the damage. Find a reputable contractor that does free roof inspection instead. They have the credibility and experience give you an honest appraisal of your roof damage without any gimmicks or sabotage to your roof.
Finding A Quality Roofing Contractor
Highly qualified and reputable roofing contractors won’t rely on scam artistry to win business. They pride themselves much more on the quality of their repairs and relationships with their clients than on their ability to profit. Quality roofing contractors give out their contact information and can provide credentials that they are insured and licensed when you ask. They will meet you each day they begin their work and happily provide you with a progress report of your roofing repair completion. They won’t overcharge or unnecessarily repair any parts of your roof that don’t need to be worked on.
Instead, they will inspect your roof up front closely and honestly before coming to you with a rough estimate of the project costs. They will never pressure you or demand payment before first starting the work. You will always pay the final price at the end when your roof repair is complete and you are 100% satisfied. If you want the most legitimate, high-quality roofing contractor in Northern Virginia to fix your roof, search out several on Google to see their reviews from former clients. Bid your top five based on these reviews and go consult with them before making any quick decisions. Here are five more tips to hiring a roofing contractor.
Once you have found the roofing contractor you believe is the most reputable, with the best quality service at the most fair price, bring them on over to your house for a free estimate. Doing it this way will help you avoid a costly scam from low-brow contractors who only care about your money and not your satisfaction.