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Question DetailsAsked on 7/18/2016

are there any roof contractors willing to help an eldery man fix his roof

He does not have a lot of money and the roof is leaking really bad. He is a man who is very I'll and need help. He cannot buy much of the material that is needed. He has rally several times and a contractor took advantage of him.

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2 Answers


This Questions forum is nationwide, so without identifying the city you are not at all likely to get any responses - you might repost this same question as a new question but with the town / state names (or zip code, though less useful) to see if you get any responses, but not likely - this is not the sort of forum many contractors peruse - just a few who come here to answer questions from people like you who come here looking for help or advice with a project or home problem.

Obviously starting with highly rated and reviewed Roofing contractors on Angies List, who have been in business a long time around town with the same ownership and have a good reputation, is the first criteria.

But the funding issue - someone advocating on his behalf (especially if able to prove he is officially "poor") might be able to talk a contractor into donating labor for instance, but would take a lot of calling around.

First place I would start - some calling around to well-established, highly-rated roofing contractors might yield one immediate result though - should be able (in 10-15 calls or so or hopefully less) to find a contractor (you should be talking to the manager or owner about this) who will come out for free and assess the problem, identify specifically what repairs are NECESSARY over say the next 5 years or so versus nice-to-have, and provide an estimate of what they would cost - as well as a total roof-over bid for comparison. I would make clear (if you are acting on this man's behalf) the general situation and money shortage issue and that you are trying to scarff up a suitable fix for him without breaking him, or to find someone to pay for the job for him. That might lead to the contractor suggesting possible sources like in the list of possible resources below, and his written assessment and estimate (even better if it has photos by him or you of the damage) would identify how much of a financial effort this is likely to take, and whether this is a major project or a fairly simple spot repair situation. It might yield an offer from the contractor to kick in a discount or free labor or such too, or if a spot repair he might offer to fix it for free or quite cheap - maybe even on the spot if a really quite simple thing like a rusted holein flashing or a few missing shingles. Or he might offer (or be willing to if asked) to tarp over the bad spot with tarp or ice and water shield if only one or a couple of spots until it can be properly fixed.


Other thoughts - depending on your local resources and amount of time you are prepared to spend calling:

1) United Way headquarters for your area should be able to help identify agencies in your area who help elderly and poor with this sort of need - depending on local resources, agencies like Salvation Army, Catholic Social Services, Habitat for Humanity, major corporations with their "Cimmunity Giving Back" programs etc might be able to help out.

2) Also, local Mayor's Office or County Executive's Office should be able to help put you in touch with public agencies (both government departments and local official and quasi-official housing agencies) who sometimes help with this sort of thing.

3) Local Elder Action group or Senior Center might know of local groups that do this sort of thing on a volunteer basis. Ditto to his church preacher or social welfare organization if a regular attending member, or was before he became ill.

4) Sometimes, though they get a lot of requests like this, local lumberyards, box stores, etc will donate building materials for this sort of thing - but pretty much exclusively only through established non-profit agencies, not direct to individuals, and donation request processing times can be long

5) local building associations - local Homebuilder's Association, the union that handles Roofers (varies by area - sometimes Carpenters Union or Laborer's Union covers roofers, sometimes there is a Roofers union either local or the United Union of Roofers, Waterproofers, and Allied Workers [or name something close to that]), or AGC [Association of General Contractors] who will sometimes take on charity cases like this, but likely to take a BUNCH of calling and connection with someone in the trade who will carry the case forward on his behalf. Matter of finding the right person with connections AND the inclination to carry it forward.

6) If one of the local unions or contractor's groups has an apprentice trade school, they might take it on as a class project. Ditto if local university or community college has a Vo-Tech school that teaches roofing or includes it in a general construction program. Again, chances of rapid action for a currently leaking roof poor as with most of the non-profit options except from the "emergency aid" type organizations.

7) and of course, are there family members who could help out with the calling around, organizing, or financing - up to and including possibly providing the money for the repair in exchange for a note or mortgage that would be paid off when he has sufficient funds or after he passes - though obviously his physical condition and luck plays into the number of years down the road that would happen and those funds would be at risk of depletion if not committed in the form of a mortgage or deed of trust backed by equity in the house, which is presumably decreasing as it deteriorates if he cannot afford repairs like this.

8) some large companies have a "volunteer day" or "giving back day" where their employees volunteer (or are paid by the company) to take one day a year (either individually or as a corporate project) to work on poor or invalid person's houses. Coordinated with Habitat in some areas. Normally this is yard care and pickup, painting, replacing rotten decking, etc - roofing might be a stretch because of the extreme liability in getting non-professional people up on a roof doing roofing, so that factor is likely to be a hindrance in most non-profit programs unless they actually pay for a professional roofer to do the work. Even Habitat for Humanity hires out the most professionally difficult and dangerous work in some (or maybe all now) locales.

Not knowing his financial situation, but if he has good equity in the house could possibly take out a home equity loan for the work - though if quite ill then not too likely to be up to doing the paperwork and such needed.

Also, not to be depressing, but if quite ill and elderly (you did not say HOW elderly or ill and if short-term or long-term / chronic illness) maybe a perfect replacement is not really needed or economically viable at this time - just a decent repair or if in generally real bad shape a shingle-over or hot-mop repair or such (depending on type of roofing of course) might solve the issue for a few needed years.

You also did not say whether we are talking likely one leak which might only take a Handyman or Roofer an hour or two to repair (like a few missing shingles or rusted-through flashing or such) and only need $100 or less in materials, or are we talking basically a whole roof of leaks calling for a total reroof for several thousand to maybe ten thousand $ (assuming asphalt shingles) depending on size and type of construction and roofing type.


You did not say how long ago it was that a contractor took advantage of him - presumably by taking money and not doing the work or doing it very poorly. If moderately recent (in last year or less) going after the contractor's bonding company (if he was bonded) to refund the money or redo the work might be a financing source. Might be able to get an attorney pro-bono through the local bar association to help with that, especially if it was significant amount of money that might go a long ways to covering the current needed repairs. Local Legal Aid Society might also be able to help, again especially if officially "poor" - on public aid, etc. IF your area has an Elder Fraud unit in local police or DA's office, another possible source of help.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD



This is James in Member Care. Thanks for your interest in Angie's List!

We'll be happy to help find top rated roofing services who you can reach out to about this, but it doesn't look like you have a subscription to the List yet. You can join by or by giving us a call. Our call center is available 8:00 am-9:00 pm weekdays and 8:00-5:00 pm ET on Saturdays. Make sure you ask our Member Care Team about our new membership options! We are open from 8am to 9pm on Mondays through Fridays and until 5pm on Saturdays. Our phone number is 888-944-5478.

Thanks for your question and we look forward to assisting you!

Answered 3 years ago by Member Services

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