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Question DetailsAsked on 11/13/2017

HOW DO I KNOW IF BEING SCAM FROM MY ROOFER?

He came in with paperwork for me to sign. asked him what's this he said to show we talked and made the claim with the insurance. when the I called the insurance company to see what was the delay. they had already has switch the adjuster and had another man. Made the appt. the roofer said he would be here called the night before to make sure he was coming. he said yes waiting for him to show up the appt. was at 9a.m. called him no response. left him a message, and texted him. Called the office to get hold of the secretary. of no answer. Here comes this man don't know he is. say tat my roofer send him. no company shirt or company cards on him. why didn't my roofer let me know he wasn't company that night I called. as soon as the agent left I get a text from my roofer saying you got the money let me know in a week. the secretary call me saying as soon as you have the check call me. nobody would answer my calls but now they want the money.

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2 Answers

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Since you are asking if you are being scammed, the first yellow warning flag has been thrown - so appraoch everything from here on with extreme caution (assuming you do not decide to back out because the whole deal stinks).


I would immediately read all the documents carefully - bearing in mind if you find something hinky you may have a three-day "cooling off" period (under Federal and/or state law) to cancel the contract without any obligation, if you feel you need to. Longer in a few states. (If documents were a contract or assignment of claim rights, they are required by law to provide you, AT THE TIME of signing the documents, with a statement sheet describing the three-day cooling off period rights and how to exercise them, if you wish to back out.


Being past the three-day period does not necessarily mean you are trapped into the contract, but to get out after that time would take a lot of negotiating, paying a cancellation fee, or getting a lawyer involved to pick his contract apart or prusue a fraud defense, for example. hence - more bucks out of your pocket and delays in getting your roof fixed.


I STRONGLY suspect the documents you signed were not just showing you had talked - there would be no need for written proof of that, so that is a major red flag for me - and since it sounds like the roofer dealt with the insurance company he almost certainly would not do that on your behalf without a committment that he was getting the job.


I suspect you signed a contract whether you realized it or not, and it is likely that it also assigns your insurance benefits (plus any depreciation/amortization not allowed and your deductible amount out of your pocket) to the contractor and guarantees him the job. NOT necessarily bad if that is your intent, but sounds like a storm-chaser case where you unknowlingly signed away your insurance claim to him and signed a contract - which would be fraud on his part. Especially if he came to you about your damage, rather than him being a Roofer which you searched out and made initial contact with.


IF in doubt or you feel some slime sticking to you, you could talk to your insurance agent (not the adjuster - sometimes they are in cahoots with the shady roofers, getting kickbacks from the roofers) about whether he thinks this is legit. Though they may just tell you to talk to a lawyer, which would be the safest thing to do if you think you got conned into signing a contract which has the effect of assigning your insurance claim and rights.


Take a close look in the contract about any cancellation fee too (which would NOT be due if cancelled within the 3-day cooling off period) - I suspect you will find a very hefty cancellation fee in the documents.


One other thing - oh, what was it - oh - him asking for the money up-front, as opposed to maybe a partial deposit or initial payment, is also a red flag. Paying him largely or completely before he starts work is typical of scammers.


LOTS of previous questions with answers and advice about storm-chaser and insurance claim roofing contracts can be found in the Home > Roofing link, under Browse Projects, at lower left.

Answered 1 year ago by LCD

0
Votes

Reread my response after it posted on the site (sometimes gets messed up in the process) - a lot of what I said dealt with scammers or unscrupulous roofers - primarily because you started off asking if you were being scammed.


Note that I was not saying I think he necessarily is (though a few flags were thrown, in my opinion) - he might have legitimately dealt whith the insurance company on your behalf and be waiting for you confirming call to schedule the job, without having tricked you into signing a contract - though that would be unusual effort for a contractor without a contract in hand.


Assuming there is no contract and that you have not/do not cancel it, you could certainly contact a couple of other roofers for quotes (not letting tyhem know the adjusted amount) to be sure you are getting a fair deal, if he is asking for more than the adjusted amount of the loss. But generally, roofers take the asjusted claim amount including any depreciation/amortization and your deductible, which amounts come out of your pocket. [More on replacement value versus amortized or depreciated value claim adjustment and the effect of that and your deductible on how much you pay out of pocket can be found in the Home > Roofing link previously mentioned - under Browse Projects, at lower left.


But if he is accepting their repair cost estimate, and you feel he is reputable and you have or are willing to sign a contract with him, might do you no good to get another bid, because most contractors would wantto see the adjustement before signing a contract - because they have no reason to walk away from money the insurance company is ready and willing to pay, so the amount they would be willing to contract for would likely be the same as the existing contractor if that is the (normal) case.

Answered 1 year ago by LCD




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