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Avoid Roofing Contractor Scams

A roof is a large investment. Besides that, a damaged roof can cause major damage and a financial crunch. When a new roof is necessary, particularly when it involves indoor leaking, many homeowners panic.

Just as there are lawyers called “ambulance chasers”, there are also roofing contractors called “storm chasers”. They know the damage that storms can cause, and they are in a business which can profit a great deal when major storms cause major damage. Some of these contractors are honest, hard working roofers. Others…not so much. They either provide shoddy workmanship, or they do not perform the work at all.

There are some things homeowners can do to protect themselves against roofing contractor scams.

Consider Several Bids

Always get at least three bids on a roofing job. More bids would even be better. Although it may be tempting to accept the lowest bid, resist. Consider everything before choosing, the lowest bid isn’t necessarily the best roofer for the job. Scam roofers like to bid low because they know it’s “easy money”. Choosing the lowest bid from a roofing contractor as opposed to the best bid can end up being very costly.

Always Check Certification and Insurance

There are different laws in each state, but they all require certification and insurance for roofing contractors. This is something many homeowners overlook when deciding on who gets the job. Don’t just assume that every roofing contractor that bids has the necessary insurance, certification, and permits to do the job. Not checking into this before signing the contract can mean big headaches later.

Read the Contract

When it comes to roofing contracts, All Surface Roofing and Contruction recommends sweating the small stuff. Make sure everything is included in the contract such as how many of each material will be needed. Also ask “what if” questions like “What happens if more supplies are needed or the job ends up being larger than anticipated”?

Make sure the payment details are agreeable. It is wise not to pay everything up-front. A much better agreement would be half up-front and half on completion. Many scam roofing  contractors like to be paid all of the money and then disappear.

Obtain a Lien Release

If you have paid a contractor, and they still owe for supplies they purchased for the job, you may be liable for those costs.A lien release protects the homeowner from further financial burden if the contractor does not honor his obligations on the job

Post Inspections

Ask the contractor about post inspections. Homeowners often have the building inspector come out, particularly if there are possible problems. Most people naturally would have no clue what to look for if they got up there themselves. Fortunately, most of the time, the work is done as specified and there is no problems. If the contractor seems to finish in a hurry or way ahead of schedule, it may be a red flag.

No two roofing jobs are the same, so there is no fast and simple rule as to how quickly the job can be done and how much it will cost. As one Portland Roof Contractor puts it: ” If you want it fast and cheap, it won’t be good. If you want it cheap and good, it won’t be fast. If you want it good and fast, it won’t be cheap.”

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