This is one of the busiest times of year for roof contractors. As steady rains go though the Metro Atlanta day after day, thousands of homeowners are forced to confront roofing problems that can be disastrous if not taken care of quickly.
Though there seems to be plenty of roof contractors to choose from in Atlanta, it’s times like these that remind us there are many. many more homeowners than roofers.
As a result, many find themselves waiting weeks for the earliest appointment as roof contractors around the area find themselves booked solid.
It’s during times like this that scammers and “fly-by-night” companies swoop in and take advantage of the more impatient among us. Promising to get the job done in hours instead of weeks, it can be tempting to just grab the first person that comes along.
Don’t. Complaints about roof contractors to the Better Business Bureau are higher than ever. Storm-chasers live for this time when all the locals are booked and they can find that one desperate homeowner to swindle.
Do your homework and check out your roof contractor BEFORE you sign anything!
Here are some things to look out for:
Make sure your roofer is local
- Call the Better Business Bureau of Atlanta (404) 766-0875
- Check Kudzu.com or Angie’s list (www.angieslist.com)
- Look in the Real Yellow pages.
- Check the Roofer and Sheet metal Contractors Association of GA (404) 766-1631.
- Check their vehicle tag for an out of state license plate!
Know your roofer
- Use a company that specializes in roofing not a construction company.
- If the owner of a construction company has never personally installed a roof, how does he know if the installer is doing it properly?
- Make sure the company you use is qualified to do the job.
- Make sure they have both general liability and worker’s comp. Ask for a certificate!
- The insurance certificate should have the correct billing address, make sure it’s local.
NO NAIL GUNS!!!
- Nail guns are good for framing (with wood) but not for a fiberglass shingle!
- Nail guns shoot nails through the shingles or not in deep enough leaving nails sticking up.This is the biggest reason for roof failure today!
- Hand nailing is the only way to assure consistent quality.
- Toe-boards” are boards that are nailed through the shingles on steep roofs so installers can work without sliding off.
- When removed they leave holes in your new roof!
- The correct way is to use toe-board brackets (fastened under the shingles) or ropes and harnesses.
Use a company that has a REAL warranty
- How can you trust a company that offers a five or ten year warranty but has only been in business for a year or two?
- What about these “storm chasers” from out of state? Will they be here if you have a problem later? The answer is NO! When the next storm hits somewhere else they will be there!
Always get a second opinion
- It is inappropriate and even unethical for your insurance company/adjuster to try to influence your decision on who to use to repair your storm damage.
- Just because a contractor shows up with your adjuster or even for the insurance company, does not mean you have to use that contractor. You have the right to use whomever you feel comfortable with to work on your home. Don’t sign anything!
- Always get more than one estimate. This could save you and/or your insurance company thousands of dollars. It is very common for “storm chasers” to overcharge (up to 25-30 percent). That’s why they want to deal directly with your insurance company, so you won’t even know!
The scammers are out in force right now, do your due diligence and don’t get ripped off!
Atlanta Roofing Specialists is a residential and commercial roofing contractor located in Marietta, GA.