You can spend $20,000 or more on roof replacement. If you take on this major investment, the last thing you need is a contractor who’ll rip you off! Three most common roofing scams:
A common scam is a contractor who insists on getting paid before work begins, or who wants an unusually large down payment. They may also ask you to sign over your insurance check to buy materials. Avoid this by hiring a well-known company with the proper credentials, bonding, insurance and a good reputation. These companies won’t ask for full payment upfront.
Another common scam involves a friendly stranger going door-to-door in your neighborhood after a storm, offering quick, cheap labor for cash on the spot. Like the down payment ploy, they usually disappear once they have the cash. Some will do a little shoddy work first. Avoid this by just saying, “No thanks,” and remember, the best roofing companies are busy already and don’t have to solicit.
The third common scam is the too-good-to-be-true low bid. You jump at the chance to save money, but soon come the upcharges. In the worst cases, contractors will remove your existing roof and demand more money to finish the job. The final bill can easily eclipse those other bids you once had in your hand. Avoid this by reading 5 things to do before re-roofing.
Nearly a dozen states don’t require roofers to have a license. In this case, local reputation, online reviews and a confirmation of license and bonding is required. Paying by credit card is a great way to protect yourself in case the job goes wrong. If you have major roof damage, it’s easy to get impatient and go with the first company that will come to do the work. Even in a disaster situation, follow best hiring practices, which includes doing your homework on the company that’ll work on your home. States that do NOT require a roofing license, based on Angie’s List research: