Getting a new roof is a big investment. Some unscrupulous roofers or individuals claiming to be roofers might try to rip you off. This is especially common after a severe weather event that damages a lot of roofs in the community. Paying a deposit only to find that the roofer takes off with your money, starts the job and doesn’t finish or uses inferior materials and shoddy practices put your finances and home at risk. Here are some tips on how to check the references of a roofer and avoid getting ripped off by a con artist.
Getting a New Roof- Check the Roofer’s References
Before making any deposits or signing any contracts for getting a new roof, check the roofer’s references. You can ask for some past customers and their contact information. However, a scam could involve the roofer giving you the names and numbers of their friends or family. You could also ask for a list of roofs they have done in the past year in your neighborhood. With that information, you could contact the homeowners and ask for their review of the roofer. You could also check references from the roofer’s suppliers. Find out if they pay their bills on time and how well they communicate. When contacting the roofer’s recent customers, ask about the estimate versus actual cost, if the job was done on time, if the customer was satisfied and if they would choose the same roofer again.
Verify the Business License and Insurance
You should also verify that the roofer is licensed to do business in your city, county or state. An ethical roofer will have no problem giving you their business license number. Also, ask for their liability insurance policy information. You can verify that the roofer is insured for any injuries incurred by their workers. Be sure to verify the policy’s coverage if the roofer causes any damage to your home, the neighbor’s home or any public areas, such as a right-of-way or sidewalk.
Check With the Better Business Bureau
The Better Business Bureau (BBB) offers online information about businesses. Especially when getting a new roof, its important to check out the BBB. If a customer files a complaint with the BBB, it will be listed on the website. BBB listings are by location. Keep in mind that some scam artists will list their location as a different state in order to avoid getting reported to the BBB. They may also change their business name frequently. On the BBB website, you can read through customer complaints and the business’s response. You can find out if the complaints were resolved to the customer’s satisfaction. If a business has a lot of unresolved complaints, it will have a poor BBB ranking.
Look at Online Review Sites
Not all customers with a problem will go through the BBB. Some might choose to leave an online review elsewhere. Consider perusing the reviews on sites including Yelp, Angie’s List and Google. Keep in mind that unhappy customers are more likely to leave a review than customers who were satisfied. Getting a new roof? Contact Steele Restoration for a local company you can trust.