Sleazy Storm Chaser
What sneaky tactics do roofing storm chasers use?
Large-scale storms with wide spread damage attract contractors who know that reputable businesses are overwhelmed.
Roofing storm chasers do what their name describes. Chase storms around the country to hawk their roofing contractor services. While some companies are legitimate, many of these storm chasers are unscrupulous.
What are these shady tactics?
- Prey on the elderly. Roofing storm chasers amp up their aggressive sales tactics when an elderly person answers the door. Many elderly tend to be more trustworthy or give people the benefit of the doubt and therefore do not research the roofer. Storm chases will inflate the cost or ask for money on top of the insurance proceeds.
- Ask for cash up front. When widespread damage occurs, it might seem reasonable for a contractor to ask for a deposit to reserve their services. Sadly, the day the homeowner gives the storm chaser $2,000 or more is usually the last day they will see them.
- Fake or create damage. Ball-peen hammers. Spoons. Golf balls. Dimes. The list can go on and one. Roofing storm chasers have a terrible reputation for faking damage. Creating or “adding” damage where none exists and collecting insurance money can carry criminal and civil penalties.
- Paying for the deductible. It sounds so good. Get insurance money, get roof fixed, and never pay a deductible. Disreputable roofing storm chasers pay for or absorb the homeowner’s deductible to get the business. A homeowner is committing insurance fraud if the contractor promises to pay the deductible and does so.
- Negotiate for more money. In 44 out of 50 states, roofers cannot legally negotiate an insurance claim without an adjuster’s license. Contractors can defend their pricing but not negotiate a claim settlement. If negotiations are necessary, property owners should hire an experienced Avvo-rated attorney since they are paid only a percentage of any new money they negotiate for the homeowner.
REMEMBER: Only use local roofers with great BBB ratings and outstanding reputations. Get at least 7 bids from roofers before making a decision.
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