No Roof Scams Group Offers Homeowners Key Ways to Avoid Roofing Scam Artists
Homeowners with roof damage following recent hail storms should take plenty of time and do their homework before hiring a roof contractor, according to a group of nonprofit, government, and business organizations sponsoring the No Roof Scams campaign to fight roofing contractor fraud in Colorado.
The recent storms in Colorado Springs, Eaton, and surrounding communities pummeled homes and businesses with hail the size of golf and tennis balls damaging thousands of roofs. Colorado is number two in the country for insurance claims filed due to property damage from hail, which makes our state a magnet for fraudulent roof contractors. These storm-chasing, fly-by-night scam artists will often make false promises, insist on full payment upfront before work is completed, and sometimes they say they’re inspecting your roof when in fact they are creating damage where none occurred.
The No Roof Scams coalition advises homeowners to avoid being victimized by fraudulent contractors by doing the following:
- Take your time when selecting a contractor. Many contractors use fear tactics such as telling homeowners their ceiling or roof may collapse without immediate repairs. Don’t fall for this ploy.
- Most legitimate local roofing contractors do not knock on doors after a storm. This is a classic technique utilized by out-of-state contractors who have no local presence.
- Check out contractors before hiring anyone with two of Colorado’s excellent resources.
- The Better Business Bureau (http://www.bbb.org/denver)
- The Colorado Roofing Association (CRA) http://coloradoroofing.org maintains a current list of licensed, properly insured, professional contractors who have committed to abide by the CRA Code of Ethics, and have passed a nationally recognized exam.
- Get more than one estimate; make sure any contract includes all information required by Colorado law (http://coloradoroofing.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/SB38FactSheet-20122.pdf).
- Never pay a contractor in full or sign a completion certificate until all the work is completed.
- Never sign a contract with blanks or statements like “see insurance estimate, etc.” – fraudulent contractors may enter unacceptable terms later.
- Under Colorado Law a contractor cannot pay, waive or rebate the homeowner’s insurance deductible.
Organizations participating in the No Roof Scams campaign include:
- Better Business Bureau – Denver/Boulder
- Colorado Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management
- Colorado Division of Insurance (Department of Regulatory Agencies)
- Colorado Roofing Association
- Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety
- National Insurance Crime Bureau
- Property Casualty Insurance Association of America
- Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association
Follow #NoRoofScams to learn more about how consumers can avoid being the victims of unethical roofing contractors and find reputable roofing contractors.