07 Mar THE TRUTH ABOUT HAIL DAMAGE AND INSURANCE CLAIMS
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Scroll below to read the truth about your hail claim.
A Message from the Owner:
Hello neighbors, I am a local hands on roof installer located in the Dallas Forth area. I have spent my entire life at a roofing job site, from 6:00 am to dark, five to six days a week, since the age of 15.
I started from the bottom of this business as a grounds cleaner and shingle carrier. Working my way up to installation apprentice and ultimately, lead installer by age 20.
Fast forward 30 years later, I am now one of the highest rated hands on roof installers in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. Still getting up between 4 and 5am, 6 days a week, running my own 12 man crews from the front.
I published this ad in an effort to get your attention and come to you with hat in hand, asking for your consideration.
Over the last 30 years, storm chasers, sales people and restoration companies have nearly ruined the roofing business for real roof installers.
In the old days, when someone needed to hire a local roof installer, they flipped to a yellow page ad and called for a written estimate. From there, what showed up to your home was an actual roof installer with an honest price for their services.
Today, the roofing market is now over run with middlemen and storm restoration companies, “calling themselves Roofers and General Contractors,” in hopes of taking over your insurance claim and pocketing all your money for themselves.
They are not waiting around for you to do your own research or call for an estimate. They want to be the first in front of you after the storm.
Knocking on doors, telemarketing calls, door hangers and flyers. A true modern day gold rush.
This aggressive sales method eventually changed the way homeowners found and hired local roofers, never giving us (the actual roof installers) a chance to bid your job. For this reason, we are humbly asking that you please consider supporting small businesses for your home repair needs, instead of the expensive storm chasing middleman companies.
If you are in need of roofing services, you should be getting something for your money. We would love an opportunity to send you a written estimate for comparison. If you are in need of other home services besides roofing, we know other local handymen from your area that are just like us. Honest installers with great pricing.
We are the same people the restoration companies and storm chasers are hiring anyway. Why not cut out the middleman?
Your insurance is giving you money to make home improvements. Why give it all away?
We are confident, if given the chance to show you how we are different, you will get much more out of your home improvement dollars. Helping us bring the roofing business, back into the hands of actual roof installers, one customer at a time.
However, even if you do not hire us, we have provided a list of tips, tricks and scam warnings below, all sent to us directly from homeowners, who unfortunately learned these lessons the hard way.
They all bought in and were fooled by the same contractors approaching you now. Following their recommendations should put you on track to avoiding the insurance scams and over charges, getting you the most out of your money, no matter who you hire.
DFW Gold Rush:
Plano and Allen Texas is now crawling with thousands of General Contractors calling themselves roofers.
Most of whom are actually commission sales people in disguise or middleman contractors, hoping to cash in on all your insurance money.
They are not always crooks, stealing the money and disappearing either.
The majority of complaints reported are actually against local DFW contractors. Friends, family and neighbors of your area who are going from their couch, to your door, every storm season, getting rich off your insurance claim.
Who’s At Fault:
Homeowners! Homeowners are actually doing this to themselves.
The average homeowner simply has no idea how insurance claims work, feel they do not have the time or desire to mess with it or feel their insurance company will take advantage of them.
So, out of fear, laziness or lack of time in the day, many are agreeing to hand over their entire insurance claim to a contractor.
This is a huge mistake. You are basically throwing your money right out the front door.
It is this fear and lack of knowledge that contractors are using against you, in hopes you will just give in and let them handle everything for you.
Although they want you to believe otherwise, contractors have absolutely no say over the approval or denial of your claim and you do not need a contractor handling your claim for you!
The truth: They simply want to be present with your adjuster, so if your claim is approved, you will feel obligated to hire them.
Congratulations! You just gave away all of your insurance money!
Welcome to the storm game! This is why contractors are beating on your door and ringing your phone off the hook.
There are millions of your dollars being thrown around after hail storms and contractors want it all.
Although it may sound like a great deal to just hand everything over to someone else and let them deal with it all. It is unfortunately all a sham.
You are immediately giving away your entire insurance budget, without ever knowing what the true costs are. When is the last time you ever made a serious purchase this way?
It is your insurance money! Put your insurance money in your own bank account and slow down. You are not ready to hire anyone yet.
What will the total cost of repairs be? What about an upgrade to a more heavy duty shingle like a Class 4 Impact resistant roof with 30% off your monthly/yearly insurance premiums? Or possibly a few new attic solar fans or ridge venting for a reduction in attic heat build up.
This is the importance of slowing down and doing some research. The more people taking money out of your budget, the less money that’s going into your roof.
Get Something For Your Money:
When you file an insurance claim, you are being given an opportunity to look into some great upgrades, while you have the funds to do it. Put your money to good use. Get some estimates and see how much you can get out of it.
The right shingle, combined with the right attic ventilation, could actually work to save you money, putting thousands back in your pocket for years to come.
Real roof installers can always take your money much further than the large storm restoration companies. You don’t know what kind of deal you can get unless you look.
Watch Your Money:
Avoid contractors that mention handling your claim or that refuse to bid your project. They make money on top of your claim. Supplementing your insurance company for thousands extra after the job is started.
Demand written estimates and compare them closely.
“Written estimates will speak volumes as to what kind of contractor you are really dealing with.”
Choose from thorough, well written estimates, explaining everything that will take place at your home, with a firm price you are to be charged upon completion.
Vague or cookie cutter one page contracts are usually a sign that you are not dealing with an experienced roof installer, with your best interest in mind.
Unfortunately, homeowners have actually reported their own insurance adjusters recommending that they also give their entire claim over to a general contractor to handle everything for them.
Why would an insurance adjuster do this?
Insurance adjusters a human. Like everyone else, they want to make as much easy money as they can.
Adjusters are being paid huge commissions by your insurance carrier for handling your storm claim.
However, the catch is they are not paid in full until your claim is processed, paid and closed out completely by you.
Taking your time to do the work or to ensure you’re getting the most out of your claims money is a huge inconvenience to an adjuster.
The quicker you get all the work done and close your claim, the quicker the adjuster can collect their commissions and move on to the next storm.
But, there’s an even bigger problem. On top of the huge commissions being paid to adjusters for working your claim, many are also being paid under the table by contractors for referring them.
If an adjuster can not only get paid cash under the table for referring a general contractor to you, but also further their agenda by getting you to quickly get everything done so they can collect their commissions from the insurance company, it is a win win for the adjuster.
Some are flat out giving you the names and numbers of contractors they recommend. Others are sending your information directly to a contractor who are reaching out to you after your claim is approved.
At the end of the day, it’s important to remember that it is your insurance claim. You are the one who purchased the policy. It has been you paying the premiums. Never feel pressured, bullied or hurried to get everything done, just so everyone can pocket their commissions off your money.
Your “insurance carrier” was just there for you when you needed them. You made a claim against damages. They agreed and are now paying you. Why allow a middleman or General Contractor to rip them off for all they can get?
If you’ve signed a contingency agreement, not to worry. It’s not too late. You do not owe anyone any money unless actual work took place at your home.
Even if they did a temporary repair or nailed down a few strips of felt on your roof, you only owe them for the temporary repair that was done. $250-$500 maximum.
At no time, regardless of what the contingency agreement says, do you owe any contractor a large percentage or all of your insurance money simply because they were present with the adjuster when your claim was approved. Your claim was going to be approved whether you had a contractor meet with your adjuster or not. You may change your mind at any time for any reason.
Contingency agreements are not real contracts. Demand written estimates and get something for your money.
Want to see what a real roof estimate looks like?
Give us a call at 817-HONEST-1 or fill out an estimate request form at the bottom of any page of our website.
We could have an extremely detailed estimate in your hands within 24 hours.
Still not convinced? Read below to read what your neighbors said.
Thousands of customers reported feeling uncomfortable or that something just wasn’t quite right about roofers or contractors before stumbling across our website.
Out of the thousands of stories and complaints received, there were three obvious and cannot miss red flags that stood out most. Being aware of the waring signs should immediately let you know if you are about to fall victim to an insurance claim scam.
(1) *Contractors Who Show Up Uninvited:
Real roof installers are busy working. We don’t knock doors or make cold calls claiming to be in your area offering free roof inspections.
Nearly all of the local news outlets in Dallas Fort Worth have aired numerous news stories actually exposing these individuals to being nothing more then marketing agencies or commission sales teams, tasked with getting you to say “YES” to a “free roof inspection”. “This is called a foot in the door technique.”
Their next goal is to then convince you to tarp the roof and file an insurance claim so they can handle everything on your behalf.
This is actually a very sneaky middleman sales trick.
By being first to approach you, convincing you that insurance claims are hard and that time is of the essence, they corner unsuspecting homeowners into immediately hiring them to take over the entire insurance claim.
This allows them to cut out the real roof installers from your area who are busy working, waiting on you to call them for an honest estimate.
“Never sign anything or agree to hire anyone without a second opinion for a detailed comparison.”
(2) *Contractors asking to see your insurance papers or to meet with your insurance company:
Contractors that do this should be asked to leave your property immediately. Besides this being the absolute laziest way to bid your job, why would you trust someone that just tried to ensure they took ALL of your insurance budget, instead of giving you a written estimate of their own?
They are attempting to see how much you’re being paid by your insurance company!
Keep contractors honest and get more out of your money.
(3) *Contractors Who Request Money Upfront
This is a Biggy. No contractor should ever expect for a homeowner to pay any money upfront in the world that we live in today.
If they cannot understand your reluctance, hire someone else. Trust your gut.
Never, for any reason, pay a roofing contractor a deposit or any money down.
Paying a contractor a deposit or any money upfront puts you at an immediate disadvantage in several very impactful ways.
Aside from the obvious disappearing with the money issue, the second biggest reason, you immediately give up all control of your own job at your own house.
This means you will no longer have the ability to fire the contractor at any time, for any reason. The person holding the money, has all the control.
After paying a deposit, most homeowners reported feeling trapped, forced or obligated to continue forward with the contractor, even when they felt they should fire them or were no longer comfortable with the job.
We receive between 15 to 30 calls a year from homeowners who were forced to stop a reroof in progress at their homes because their contractor was not delivering on the promises that were made.
“The contractor was not performing the job as promised.”
“Crews were sloppy and damaging our landscaping and garage doors.”
“We could immediately tell that the crew was incompetent and doing a very poor job.”
“They were damaging our sprinkler heads and landscaping before any work was even started.”
“The materials that showed up were used and not brand new or were not what we asked for.”
“Were not insured as promised.”
Put Their Money Where Their Mouth Is!
As a homeowner, you should always want your contractor to be 100% invested in your project. Not just with their time but financially as well.
This will ensure they hold up their end of the deal. Starting the job in a timely manner, providing the good crews they promised, doing those extras they promised, stressing on perfection, etc.
You’ll find that contractors are far more eager to follow through on all their promises, when all their money is riding on it.
When you pay a contractor upfront, it relives them of this important motivator.
To protect our customers, HonestRoof.com requires no money down until all work is 100% complete and you are 100% satisfied.
Honest Roofers Near You
Seeing the early warning signs and following your fellow neighbors advice will prevent the headaches and keep you away from scammers and middlemen, ensuring you are getting the most out of your home improvement dollars.
Looking for a second opinion? Want to see what a real roof estimate looks like? Give us a call or fill out our contact page. We could have an honest estimate in your hands within one business day.
Now that you are fully aware of the dangers and disadvantages of handing your entire insurance claim over to a contractor, you are now ready to move on to the next step of the insurance claims process. Check out our next blog for step two.
Roof inspections, possible tarp repairs and written estimates.