Consumer alert: BBB warning about roof inspection scams that are starting to pop up
With the warmer weather and summer storms come roofing scams. This spring, the Better Business Bureau Scam Tracker is already receiving reports of shady “free” roof inspections. Homeowners should be on the lookout for these cons.
Susan Bach, northeast Wisconsin regional director for the BBB joined NewsChannel 7 at 4 on Tuesday to talk about what to look out for.
“It starts with a phone call or maybe a door-to-door visit from somebody who is a rep for a roofing company, and they tell the homeowner that they’re in the neighborhood doing somebody else’s roof, and they offer a free roof inspection,” Bach explained.
According to recent Scam Tracker reports, con artists are often using the name of the state (i.e. Minnesota or Texas) plus “Roofing” or “Construction” as their business name.
But if you ask questions about where the business is located or how their services work, you’ll most likely be met with vague answers, or, if you are speaking on the phone, they may simply hang up.
When the con artist shows up at your house and don’t find enough wear and tear to merit a whole new roof, they may fabricate it by tearing off shingles to mimic wind damage. They could also simply show you pictures of someone else’s damaged roof. The BBB is warning to not hire this company. Any repairs done by such a dishonest business are not likely to be high quality.
Filing a claim with your insurance company goes on your record and could affect future claims or your continued coverage. Before signing any paperwork or contracts with a roofing company, get your insurance company to come out for an inspection to verify the need for repairs or replacements.
Also, look at a company’s business rating on BBB.org. Keep a close eye on previous reviews and any complaints other consumers might have had. This is one of the best ways to know if a roofing company is reputable or just a cover for a scam.
Bach said driveway repair, asphalt sealing, vacation and moving scams are also popular in the summertime.