WARNING ABOUT “STORM CHASERS” ROOFING COMPANIES THAT ARE OUT OF STATE
You may have heard of “Storm Chasers” on the news, or read about them in the local newspaper.
The local BBB has been of little help in guarding against these kinds of firms. The first things most of them do upon arriving here is apply for BBB membership; and the BBB appears to look no further than the membership fees they’re glad to collect.
We have asked the BBB several times to look at actual practices and whether or not their addresses are legitimate or just a motel room, but we get no response.
Then the Storm Chasers slap the BBB seal of approval on everything: their trucks, their business cards and their sales pitches.
The second thing they do is visit the cell telephone shop and get a local Charlotte phone number to further confuse the homeowner into thinking they’re a legitimate local firm.
Chasers come into Charlotte and our nearby communities with crews of sales people to bombard our homeowners with misinformation. Some of the misinformation can be dangerous; some can be illegal. They imply that there is a short window of time to file a claim ( which is often just not true).
There’s likely a short window for how long the Chaser will be in the Carolinas. That’s probably why they’re trained to push and push you to rush your decisions.
Even if the homeowner had a legitimate storm claim, there is a larger concern: the workmanship of the roof project and its durability. That’s one of the ways they can hurt you: if you need service, who are you going to call if your roofer is back home in Arkansas or Alabama? What if a shingle blows of in two years time and a simple repair would save your property. We hope you will call our Service Department.
Some of the Storm Chasers that come into town convince distressed local roofers to allow the out-of-town chasers to use their local name, reputation and business license; an example is Renoir Restoration which has allowed its name to be used by chasers in the past. If it sounds shady, it probably is.
How can you protect yourself?
- Do not use companies that sell door-to-door unless they can establish they’re truly local.
- Do not use those that offer to get around the terms of your policy? Or around State regulations..? If they begin to offer a shady conspiracy, it’s not fair to you or your Insuror.
- If you think you may have damage, call your insurance company and a local roofing company that is reputable, local and has long standing references in the community.
- Ask for their length of time in business and ask for nearby references.