Our state sees more than our fair share of inclement weather including hail storms, heavy rainfall, and high winds. Because of this, quality roof repair is always in demand no matter what time of year it is.
Roofing companies like A-to-Z Roofing & Exteriors stay relatively busy here in the Centennial State. However, there are some loosely defined ‘roofers’ in Colorado who prey on home and business owners looking for fast, affordable roof repair services in the wake of a serious storm or other weather event.
These ‘below the radar’ roofing operations employ any number of shady tactics to scam innocent consumers all over the state. Many roofing projects are five-figure jobs, an attractive feature for scam artists who just want to make a quick buck at the expense of an unsuspecting property owner.
To avoid getting scammed by unscrupulous roofing ‘companies’, it’s important to be aware of their most common scams. Be on the lookout for these scams, and never, ever sign anything or agree to any work until you’ve completed the due diligence outlined in this article.
The Vanishing Upfront Payment Scam
It’s not uncommon for some insurance companies to pay roof damage settlement claims directly to the homeowner. Then, the homeowner can shop for a qualified roofer to complete the needed repair work.
Home or business owners in this situation are targeted by devious scammers pretending to be reputable roofing contractors. These scammers will often provide a professional-looking quote to repair the roof and then ask for a sizable downpayment.
Often, the quote will be much lower than other, legitimate quotes. This is done intentionally to entice the property owner to fork over the upfront payment.
After the down payment is made, the scammers take off, never to be heard from again.
To avoid this scam: never, ever provide a down payment on a roofing project. It’s not necessary, and a legitimate roofer will never demand one before starting the work.
The Door-to-Door Insurance Fraudster Scam
Unfortunately, insurance fraud is very common here in Colorado. Some of the most prevalent perpetrators of this crime are door-to-door roofing ‘sales people’ offering a free roof inspection after a major storm has hit.
Here’s how this scam works: Once the salesperson gets up to the roof, they actually cause damage in an effort to make it look like damage that was caused naturally. Sometimes, they’ll rip off shingles, punch holes in flashing, or tear off pieces of siding and then take pictures of the damage for submission to the insurance company.
Most insurance companies are hip to this sort of scam. And, when the insurance claim comes back as denied, the home or business owner is on the hook for damage.
When this happens, the roofing representative conveniently disappears leaving the property owner in the lurch.
To avoid this scam: never allow a door-to-door salesperson onto your roof before thoroughly vetting the company they’re representing. Always investigate the background of any roofing company you’re considering doing business with, and if something seems fishy, walk away.
The Magically Growing Bid Scam
This last scam is incredibly common even among some established roofing services providers.
This scam starts with a bid proposal for roof repair or replacement. Often, the bid is exceptionally low, something that might be attractive for home or business owners who don’t know what to expect.
Once the work is agreed to, contractors show up and the job begins. This is when ‘unexpected’ costs arise.
In this case, the scammers tell the property owner that unforeseen variables have impacted the job and that more money is needed to complete the project. And, because the work has already been started, the property owner feels like they are compelled to finish what was started.
To avoid this scam: never agree to any roofing work that is not clearly outlined in a contract. Additionally, make sure the contract you sign itemizes the materials that will be used, a defined labor cost, as well as a ‘Not to Exceed’ cost associated with the job.
Avoid All These Scams by Choosing A-to-Z Roofing & Exteriors
It’s unfortunate that the Colorado roofing industry has been corrupted by scammers.
Having been in business since 1993, the roofing professionals at A-to-Z Roofing & Exteriors have made a name for ourselves by performing honest, affordable, reliable roof repair and replacement services to home and business owners throughout the state.
Our track record speaks for itself. When you need a trustworthy roofer, contact us first.