Virginia Roofers Warn Homeowners to be Wary of After-Disaster Scam Artists

Just because Northern Virginia had a mild winter, doesn’t mean that it wasn’t completely unaffected by severe rain and hail storms that can often leave siding and roof systems destroyed. As the leading Virginia Roofers, Style Roofing knows that because siding and roof systems are a building’s first line of defense against the elements, any significant damage can leave home and business owners in a panic, looking for the quickest fix to their structural problems. However, it is important that one exercises extreme caution when hiring roofing installers as the vast number of contractor scams happen to distressed property owners following an extreme storm.

Because repairing or installing a siding and roofing system can be both time-consuming and costly, it is essential to make sure that the company working on your home or business has the experience and skill needed to solve structural issues, not create additional ones. To save time, aggravation, and money, Style Roofing has compiled a list of important things for all home and business owners to keep in mind before hiring a roofing contractor.

    Immediately following a storm, check with your insurance company to find out each and every detail of your policy coverage, as well as the specific filing requirements. This, along with saving all receipts, will save unnecessary delays in getting your siding and/or roofing project started.
    Style Roofing recognizes how stressful it can be when the external structure of a home or business is in disarray. Despite the anxiety to return a property to its original state, don’t allow your emotions to get the best of you. Making a hasty and uneducated decision in hiring roofing installers can come back to bite you, particularly as it is a choice that carries a long-term impact.  Because of this, it is vital to take the time to compare the prices of at least three or four companies that are licensed to work in your area, based on the same specifications and materials.  (Especially for larger repairs!) Neglect to do this, and you run the risk of having an insufficient contractor create further damage, ultimately taking more time and money out of your pocket!
    The second a door-to-door siding or roofing contractor comes to your home or business, automatically be suspicious. Generally, workers who show up on your doorstep or are without a permanent company address need a solicitation permit to conduct business. Without it, a contractor is illegitimate and likely trying to scam you. This also applies if workers knock on your door claiming that your home or business is structurally unsafe. For these matters, only trust the word of an experienced engineer, architect, or building official—they’ll be the ones who can determine how much damage really exists on a property.
    Before officially hiring any roofing installing service, require a written contract agreement including the company’s name, address, license number, and phone number. Never sign a blank contract agreement and always demand that you receive a copy at the time of signature.
    Make sure to read the entire contract agreement, including the fine print. Several illegitimate roofing installers use a clause imposing significant cancellation fees or liquidation damages if the home or business owner decides not to use the contractor after an insurance claim is approved. Sometimes, a customer could be required to pay the full agreed price if service is cancelled after a three-day period. Whatever the case may be, if you find anything in your estimate or contact confusing, don’t be afraid to speak up and ask questions!
    When choosing a roofing installation company, think local. Contractors that are in your area and are highly reviewed by others are always the best choice. There should never be any pressure on a home or business owner to make a quick choice in hiring a contractor—remember, any and all legitimate companies will allow you as much time as you need to decide whether you want to hire them or not.

It’s unfortunate, but scam artists have made storm chasing a multi-million dollar industry, all at the expense of the customer. In the end, it’s important to use common sense in choosing a roofer. Like most things in life, if a company provides an estimate that sounds too-good-to-be-true, it almost always is. Sure, these “contractors” may have below-cost bids that sound attractive, but they also are usually the ones that are uninsured and perform substandard work using substandard materials—making additional repairs and costs necessary.

With generations of experience in the siding and roofing installing industry, Style Roofing is greatly disheartened that anyone would attempt to take advantage of home and business owners in such a way. Should you have concerns regarding structural repairs needed on your property, we welcome all questions. Our Virginia roofing experts are trained and ready to provide the answers and installation solutions needed, when it’s needed most.