It’s that time of year when storms will be rolling into North Texas, wreaking havoc on all of creation, most specifically, your roof. Sadly, the damage you might sustain from the rough weather might not be the only dangers that you might deal with. The other threat? Roofers trying to scam you. These shysters seem to come out of the woodwork like cockroaches—and flood in from out of state—after a twister or onslaught of hail. That’s where the Roofing Contractors Association of Texas (RCAT) comes in. Their sole mission is to raise public awareness about the widespread devastating effects of roofing fraud and help you avoid falling victim to them. In short, they’ve got your back, and Peak Roofing & Construction is proud to be a RCAT Licensed Roofing Contractor.
Here’s how it might look. A storm blows through and homes, maybe yours, are destroyed. These wise guys show up at your doorstep promising quick, cheap repairs and ask for a high down payment. You pay them, all the while trusting them. After this, the fraudulent roofer will do little, if any, of the work they promised you. They’ll be gone—gone like the wind. Unfortunately, you’ve given them your payment, which oftentimes is your entire insurance pay out. Worse, you’ll be left with shoddy repairs that won’t hold up next time there’s a storm.
Your Next Steps
Assess the Damage. According to RCAT, you should know that many contractors are willing to put on tarps immediately but beware of the difference between signing a contract that authorizes them to put on a tarp and signing a contract for future repairs or a new roof. Read carefully before you sign a contract with contingencies.
Call Your Insurance Company. Do this first. Make sure you understand your deductible and your depreciation. Make sure you’re on point about what your insurance company will and won’t pay. If you have damage but no leaks, you might want to wait until the end of storm season to avoid paying two deductibles.
Protect Yourself. First and foremost, hire local. Be very suspicious of out-of-towners. Get three bids in writing and get references. If the contractors check out, choose one who is an established member of the community, is insured or bonded and has a clean, good track record. And, don’t feel pressured to hire someone right away. And always, always don’t pay anything upfront unless all your materials are delivered, like ever.
Don’t Inadvertently Commit Insurance Fraud. This is very important. If someone mentions, “waiving,” “eating” or “covering” a deductible, while this might sound like a good deal, know that this is insurance fraud. Specifically, if a contractor and/or homeowner falsifies an invoice, a proposal, a loss summary or any other pertinent documents relating to the payment of an insured loss in order to circumvent the payment of a deductible, remember: it’s illegal. Get more than one bid. Shop and compare.
If you have any questions at all, go to the RCAT or give us a call. We’re here for you, ready and waiting, to help you with all your roofing needs. Peak Roofing & Construction is a RCAT Licensed Roofing Contractor operating in Dallas-Fort Worth (972-335-7325) and Austin (512-415-6888).