Common Roofing Scams That Homeowners Fall Prey To

Your roof is one of the most important features of your home. Keeping it in working condition helps you protect one of the biggest investments you will ever make: your home. Unfortunately, scam artists are aware that many homeowners don't know much about the roofing industry. They use this to their advantage to take your hard-earned money. Below are the most common roofing scams that con artists use.

Vanishing Down Payment

This is the most common scam. When homeowners have roofing contractors to inspect their roofs, the contractors say that they found some issues and can fix them. However, they request a down payment to cover the cost of materials for the repairs. The best way to avoid this scam is to simply avoid hiring contractors who require a down payment first. If you don't give them any money, they can't rip you off.

Storm Chasers

This is one of the most commonly talked about types of roof repair scams. Sometimes referred to as “roof gypsies,” these out-of-town roofers follow severe storms. They know that insurance companies will pay to have roofs repaired in these areas. They usually go door to door offering free inspections. They know how insurers work and base their rates on the maximum amount that an insurance company would pay to repair the specific square footage of a roof. Unfortunately for you, roof gypsies do the bare minimum when it comes to repairing or putting a new roof on your home. The end result is a bad roofing job and a contractor who is no where to be found.

The Fluctuating Bid

Before roofers start a project, they give you a bid on how much it will cost to complete the job. Con artists will start off with a low bid that no legit roofing company could possibly match. Once they start the project, however, they will continue to run into “unforeseen” problems that slowly increase the price of the project. They are typically already so far into the project that homeowners continue to pay the extra money just to get the job done. It's important for homeowners to remember that rising material costs isn't the responsibility of the homeowner. The cost of materials should be worked into the bid.

The next time you hire a contractor, keep these common scams in mind. It's also important to remember that scam artists don't just target homeowners looking for roof repair. They also prey on people who need siding or eavestrough repair or installation. Learning how to identify these scams will keep you and your family safe.