Roofing Scam: The Storm Chaser

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John smith

Subject:

I did this work for a few years! I have went to a storm with a group of 5 or so guys, and each one cleared over 100k. If they are not ripping off the insurance companies and homeowners, how is this possible? Like I said, I did this work for a few years so I know how! I'm not going to get into all the details, but I figure that alone is something for a homeowner to think about! The thing I didn't like was as some people have stated, once the storm is wrapped up, we were out of there! And I made the mistake of using my personal cell number at my first storm, and for months after we left I would get messages from homeowners about leaks, loose shingles etc... And there was nothing I could do for them! And the way they do it is they will usually use the name of a local roofing company, usually a smaller one, and give the owner a kickback for letting us use his companies name. That way we looked local but the thing is, we would set up our own temp office with our own phone number etc... Not linked to the actual company at all. So when you try to call you will not get through. When the storm is over and we leave, if someone actually calls the real company, I'm not exactly sure how they handle it, but I do know they are told if any problems arise we will come back and take care of it, which is not true! So I assume u get the run around until u give up? We would bring our own roofing crews with us, most of which were illegals, and as far as u asking for insurance papers etc... We always had copies of the local companies so that is not a way to find out! I would say to look at the guy who comes to your door, check out his license plate or ask to see his drivers license if it not from your state or nearby town, I would stay away! I got out because I was tired of being away from my family for months at a time, and I kinda started to feel bad after I started to figure out how it worked. If you have a storm in your area, I would just call an adjuster and have them come check it out for you. They will do you honest, and believe it or not, they actually get paid a commission on what they pay for, so they wNt to pay for your roof, but at the same time they know that if there isn't sufficiant damage and they pay, they will lose there job! So you don't need these guys that come knocking or leave fliers in your door.....trust me!!! Hope this helps

Justin

Subject:

Yeah you must know every "storm chaser" there ever was. First off, you think a local company has never left a costumer unsatisfied? The average roofing company doesn't last 5 years anyways. Don't be mad at the storm teams out there trying to get it instead of waiting around for $400 -$50 gutter cleaning jobs.
Second you say " chasers know how the insurance companies work, and based on the square footage of the roof, they can figure out how much it will cost..." YEAH, YOU SHOULD BE TO IF YOUR DOING INSURANCE CLAIM JOBS. As far as "cheap roofs" goes, when I did that kind of work I bring extra decking just in case, tear off old shingles down to the deck, new underlinement, all new hardware, and nailed on shingles, and if I could I would upgrade 3 tab to a premium shingle for no cost, and personally check on the job 3 times while it was being done, then come out and inspect it and magnetic rake the yard and driveway myself before collecting a check.
Third, if your telling people they need a new roof in 5-7 years you are ripping people off, a builders grade stapled on reroof will last longer then that.
Now when it comes to people getting scammed, that's stupid, If the company says they need money to buy supplies or pay labor then there is obviously no backbone to this company

Bryan Howard

Subject:

I find it Funny that any roofer says that its a scam when Storm Chasers come to an area and "EXPLOIT" the homeowners when hail & wind damage occur in the area.... Maybe we should audit their books and see how many Insurance contracts they have closed.
Lets be clear about this. IT IS the Insurance Companies responsibility to pay for damage caused by storms.
When a heavy storm hits. Crews of Adjusters Called STORM TEAMS or CAT TEAM encompass the area and write checks 24-7 for months on end for full replacement of roof, siding , gutters etc...
I've been a local contractor here in Ohio for quite a few years and have seen a large influx in roofing contractors as a result of the laws that protect the homeowner's here and require full replacement. just recently I have branched out and opened 3 new offices across the country.
In my experience\... its the local contractors mostly complaining because such a mass amount of roofers are coming into the area. And half the time they are too lazy to get out and compete. In billings Montana Last year . 40,000 homes were effected by massive 4" hail. approximately 10,000 homes were repaired. that leaves 30,000 homes incomplete. All the while, you couldn't get a room for 6 months without being parked on top of an adjuster.
Is there roofers out there stealing people's money and completing the full scope of work for the price paid by insurance. Or just getting the checks and running. Sure. I've heard lots of stories over the years. There's also a lot Homeowners just taking the money and not getting all the work done too. that's Fraud as well. But to identify all Storm Chasers as scam artists because they chase storms is bologna. Chasing a storm as a legal contractor in the area is not a scam nor is it illegal. What happens after the contract is signed and agreed on, well that's what seperates the men from the boys.

Tim victory

Subject:

Some so called storm chasers mostly find find local contractors to do the work. What do you think they are going to do Manuel labor.? Therefore would that make them storm chasers or contract agents helping file claims in many cases for people that wouldn't file a claim on their own valistion. They simply charge a fee absorbed by the insurance company's check book via the local contractors agreement they arranged on the side. This type or transaction is useded by the craftest of storm chasers know as lone wolfs. I am not saying they wouldn't steal you blind if you let them I am just saying they can come dressed as a sheep in wolfs clothing. A lone wolf just usely takes a few lambs. Bhaaa

Tony

Subject:

Gypsies indeed. I haven't run across a GAF Master Elite roofing company that chases storms yet. That is THE Gold standard that separates the best roofers from the amateurs. Crawl back into the woodwork where you came from and leave the quality work to real roofing companies.

Steve Allison

Subject:

I am a storm chaser and my company is a licensed general contractor in the 2 states we work in. We repair the roofs with better products that what insurance pays for and they get lifetime warranties bc we are certified through our manufacturers. It a good idea to do your homework on any claims a contractor makes so you as the homeowner can make an informed decision. There are bad companies everywhere that do make it hard for the ones that do the right thing.

ben quire

Subject:

So roofers show up to an area where people need new roofs. Hmm what a scam. Any business targets markets with the most demand. So if joe is from out of town and bill is from town that must mean bill does good work and joe does shoddy work? What happens when bill works in joes town? Does he do shoddy work then? These generalizations are ludicrous. Also, a roof isnt all that complicated and what exactly would randomly go wrong in 5 years? Stop spreading lies. There are good roofers and bad roofers both types are local and out of town.

Nan Friel

Subject:

Storm Chasers are exactly that, they watch for bad weather and storms and then blanket
the area. They can come in much less dollar wise than local contractors. Why? Because they
do not carry proper licenses, insurance and workman's compensation. If they get hurt on the job
with no workman's comp, who pays? YOU DO!
If they skip town without paying the supplier, the supplier puts a lien on your house. Water running out of your microwave the next time there is a hard rain, try finding them. You'll be calling the local contract to fix their shoddy work.
Roofing can be complicated, is a truss fractured, does wood need replaced? what quality of shingle
did you buy and is that what is being put on your roof? Are they certified installers by Certainteed, Norandex or Owens Corning? You might save some money to start out but you will be spending it and more later on down the road.

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I second the original question (still unanswered). Speaking as someone who logged in today to try to find an attorney, I see this category as one that's exactly what I have my Angie's List membership for:

1. It's important that I find a good one
2. I'm not an expert enough to know myself who is a good one
3. The industry is full of advertisements and misinformation
4. I wish I knew what experiences other people have had


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I don't care about lawns--I planted mine in clover and don't have to mow it. When I do need to mow I use a rotary Fiskars mower, which is great--or a scythe. That's right--a scythe (the European type, which is smaller, and it's very good exercise). Gas-powered mowers, chemical fertilizers and weed killers--all nasty stuff that gets into everyone's air, soil, and water. I'm sure my neighbor doesn't like my wildflowers, semi-wild pockets of fruit bushes, and unmown areas and yes, dandelions (I have 10 acres) but that's too bad. It's better habitat for wildlife, especially the pollinators on which our food supply depends. I think this obsession with the Great American Lawn is a waste of time and resources. Plant some food instead.


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I'm not sure Angie et. al. want you to have a complete answer to this question. By re-subscribing at the Indiana State Fair in 2012, I think I paid $20.00 per year for a multi- year subscription. Maybe even less. At the other extreme--and I hope my memory isn't faulty about this--I think the price, for my area, for ONE year was an outrageous $70.00. And they debited me automatically without warning. I had to opt out of that automatic charge. I like Angie's List, but if some of the companies they monitor behaved the way they do in this respect, they'd be on some sort of Pages of Unhappiness. I'll be interested to see if this comment gets published or censored out of existence.
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That's very difficult to answer without seeing the house. As one poster said, the prep is the most important part. On newer homes that don't have a lot of peeling paint, the prep can be very minimal even as low as a couple or a few hundred dollars for the prep labor.

On a 100 year old home with 12 coats of peeling paint on it, then the prep costs can be very high and can easily exceed 50% of the job's labor cost.

A 2100 sq ft two story home could easily cost $1000 just for the labor to prep for the paint job. That number could climb too. Throw in lots of caullking  or window glazing, and you could be talking a couple or a few hundred dollars more for labor.

Painting that home with one coat of paint and a different color on the trim could run roughly $1000 or more just for labor. Add a second coat  and that could cost close to another $1000 for labor.

For paint, you may need 20 gallons of paint. You can pay from $30-$70 for a gallon of good quality exterior paint. The manufacturer of the paint should be specified in any painting contract. Otherwise, the contractor could bid at a Sherwin-Williams $60 per gallon paint and then paint the house with $35 Valspar and pocket the difference. $25 dollars per gallon times 20 gallons? That's a pretty penny too.

That was the long answer to your question. The short answer is $2000 to $4000 and up, depending upon the amount of prep, the number of coats, the amount of trim, and the paint used.