Ripped off by a roofing contractor? You’re in the right place. It’s something many of us have experienced – but thankfully, there are a number of things you can do if you find yourself in a similar situation.
What can I do if a contractor ripped me off?
Finding a good roofing contractor can sometimes be difficult – but it’s an important choice nonetheless. Actually – it’s one of the most important early steps in preventing yourself being ripped off.
Those that do have bad experiences with roofing contractors will often have made the mistake of simply choosing the wrong service provider to start with.
In this article, we’re going to look at a few ways to make sure you find the best roofing contractor in your local area, so you can reduce the risk of actually having a problem at all.
We’re also aware that that’s not always possible, and even when making a considered choice before you sign-up, things can sometimes go wrong.
If that’s happened to you, we’re also going to give you a few tips to help get you sorted so that you can resolve the situation in the best way possible.
What to do if you’ve been ripped off by your roofing contractor
Has your contractor failed to finish the job to an adequate level? Have they left a mess around your property or walked of with some of the payment? Here are a few things you can do immediately if you’ve got one of these problems:
– Check if they’ve broken any local laws and report them
There are a number of different licensing agreements and local laws that roofing companies have to abide by.
Things like safe working practices and other health and safety regulations are often important, and a good contractor should take them seriously.
If you notice any major transgressions, document then with photographs and provide evidence to relevant authorities.
You might be able to get their industry accreditation revoked, or sometimes even the threat of doing so could be enough to get your problem fixed.
For other issues, like unfinished work, you could try small claims courts or other legal procedures, which we’ll have a look at later.
– Ask to speak to management
This should probably be your first step when you notice an issue – ask to speak to the boss and be forthright with your opinions on exactly what they’ve done wrong.
If it’s a big roofing company, the boss might not even know there’s been an issue and may be more than happy to fix it for you.
Reputable roofing firms sometimes make mistakes, so they might want to solve any staffing issues and over-deliver on fixing their mistakes.
Make sure you’re clear and direct about exactly what the issue was, and what you expect from them. You can offer photographic evidence to support your claim.
– Ask other people you know if this has happened to them
This is important if you’re trying to build a bigger case against your roofer. Ask other people in your area if they’ve been affected by this firm.
Have a look in your local newspaper and online to see if these are common issues. Try reaching out and getting extra evidence from other people who’ve been affected, as this could support your claim.
– Threaten legal action
The next step if your roofing firm is less willing to help – is to threaten legal action. Sometimes just the threat will be enough to sort the problem, but other times you might need to actually go through with it.
This is where supporting evidence form other people who’ve been affected can help, as well as the evidence you gathered yourself. Even just getting an official legal letter drawn up could help your situation.
– Leave a negative review
While this might not have quite the same impact as a letter from your lawyers, people still don’t like negative reviews online as it might affect their ability to get more business.
Some firms are actually quite proactive at dealing with poor reviews, so you could find this a good way to get a response to your minor roofing issues.
How to find a quality contractor that’s less likely to rip you off
One of the biggest factors in helping prevent you getting ripped off is to choose a better roofing contractor in the first place.
There should be a few quality providers in your local area that hardly ever have problems with their work – and when they do, they’ll be proactive in providing a first rate solution.
These are the sort of roofing companies you need to try. But how do you find them?
– Check online reviews
These days, you can get review and rating sites for almost anything – so check to see which roofing companies in your area come highly recommended.
– Ask people you know
While reviews are good, nothing beats the personal recommendation from someone you actually know. Ask neighbours or other friends if they’ve had a good roofing experience and who they used.
– Ask to look at finished jobs
When you’re talking to a potential roofing company, ask them to see if they’ve got a portfolio of finished work they can show you.
A good roofer should have plenty, and you might even be able to visit them on-site to have a look at their work.
– Ask for competitive quotes
Don’t just go for the first roofer you meet, and don’t just go for the cheapest. While cost will obviously be an important factor, sometimes – you get what you pay for.
– Check how long they’ve been in the industry
Some roofing companies disappear as quickly as they arrive in the industry – and these are the ones you’ll want to avoid.
Make sure you check any references and whether they’ve changed their trading name recently, as that could be another red flag.
Hopefully, these tips have been enough to get you started so that you know how to find the best roofer in your area.
If you do get ripped off by your roofer, you should also now have a bit more information to help you get it sorted.