5 Common Roofing Scams (And How To Spot Them) (2024)

If you find yourself in a spot where you need roof repair or replacement, it’s critical to know how to avoid roofing scams. Yes, it’s true; roofing scams run rampant, especially after large storms where homeowners who incurred roof damage and are left vulnerable as they need repairs done quickly. That’s when the scammers swoop in.

So we are going to help you not only avoid roofing scams but to spot them from a mile away. When it comes to your roof, you want your repairs done by a trustworthy, reputable contractor. Here’s how to make sure that happens.

5 Common Roofing Scams (And How To Spot Them) (1)

The Most Common Types of Roofing Scams

There are roofing scams that frequently happen enough to where we know how to spot them right away. These are the most common scammer tactics you might see for roof repairs.

5 Common Roofing Scams (And How To Spot Them) (2)

Storm Chasers

Storm chasers do just that: they will go to an area struck by a strong storm and start knocking on doors offering their services. This is because these contractors are there for a quick buck and are often from out of town, which has also given the name “fly-by-night” contractors. They swoop in offering deals on roof repairs, but they do it fast and get out of there, never to be seen again.

The biggest problem with these storm chasers is that they will knock homeowners while they’re already down. They will fool homeowners into thinking their roof was damaged, whether it was or not, and will take advantage of the situation to offer you a new roof or roof repairs at a steal of a deal. They may even get your insurance company involved and tell you that if you file a claim with insurance, they can actually give a better deal and will handle the rest for you. This is a BIG RED FLAG.

These contractors haven’t even inspected your roof, yet are telling you you need repairs right away, from them, at a low cost. So when this happens, make sure you don’t fall for their tactics. Call a legitimate local contractor for an inspection.

Insurance Fraud

Homeowners need to be very skeptical of any contractors offering to handle their insurance claim and especially if they offer to cover your deductible, plus offer a “free” incentive in addition. This scam means the contractor will “cover your deductible” by charging you less, paying the deductible, and charging the insurance company more than the work they did. That extra they get paid from the insurance company is profit for them and cash in their pockets. Homeowners should always have a hand in the insurance claim and keep track of how much is approved and how much the service is for. If a contractor ever offers to pay your deductible in full for you—run.

5 Common Roofing Scams (And How To Spot Them) (3)

Unlicensed Contractors

There are many reasons why a contractor without a license is a red flag. First, a handful of states do not require roofers to be licensed: Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Missouri, New Hampshire, New York, Ohio, South Dakota, Texas, Vermont, and Wyoming. So if you don’t live in one of these states, then an unlicensed roofer means they are either roofing illegally, or are a fly-by-night storm chaser contractor from out of state.

Also, licensed roofing contractors carry liability insurance and other insurance coverage to ensure a safe and protected roofing installation. Hiring a licensed contractor also means you can expect good workmanship, higher quality materials, and ethical practices. Roofers who aren’t licensed haven’t been vetted to prevent these things and should be avoided.

Asking for Full Payment Upfront

Roofing contractors should not be asking for the full payment upfront before they begin work. This should be a big red flag that they are doing something sketchy. Some contractors may ask for small down payment upfront, to cover the cost of some materials, but the full cost of labor and everything should never be charged until the job is complete. Things can come up as roofers work on your roof, and if they were already paid for the job, then they have no incentive to stop and fix that area.

It’s also key to note if any contractor gives you an incredibly low ball estimate. Getting a couple of quotes from a few different roofers can help prevent something like this from happening. Their estimates should be relatively similar depending on the materials they use.

5 Common Roofing Scams (And How To Spot Them) (4)

Mystery Damage

And last but not least, the roof scam where a roofer comes to inspect your roof, gets up on the roof before you’ve actually agreed to work with them, and claims damage that they inflicted themselves. Until you’ve signed the paperwork and actually hired a contractor, never let them get up on your roof. And if you can, take photos of your roof or storm damage before you get your inspection. This can protect you from any “mystery damage” claims after a roof inspection.

As always, you should always trust your gut in these situations. It will more often than not be the right decision. If something seems sketchy or if you don’t feel right about it, get in touch with a local contractor with an office and an address. This can help avoid any roofers who are unlicensed and looking for a quick buck. Luckily, Apple Roofing has an office, and you can come to visit us in person anytime! We would love to work with you to ensure you get the professional, trustworthy roofing work that you deserve.

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5 Common Roofing Scams (And How To Spot Them) (2024)


5 Common Roofing Scams (And How To Spot Them)? ›

Never start a roofing project without a signed contract that includes a scope of the work to be completed and the warranty. All reputable roofers will insist upon this, as it protects you and them. And professionals will not accept or ask for money until this contract is signed by all parties.

How do you not get ripped off by a roofer? ›

Never start a roofing project without a signed contract that includes a scope of the work to be completed and the warranty. All reputable roofers will insist upon this, as it protects you and them. And professionals will not accept or ask for money until this contract is signed by all parties.

What are common scammer phrases? ›

The Dirty Dozen: "Classic" Scams and Pitches
1.It's your lucky day! You won the foreign lottery!
2.Burn fat while you sleep!!!
3.Free cash grants! Never repay!
4.This free seminar can change your life!
5.Make BIG money working from home!
7 more rows

Why do roofers keep coming to my house? ›

The first red flag that should pop up is a “roofer” showing up to your house unannounced, saying they can repair your roof or replace it for less money than is possible. Don't even entertain their offer, as these are door-to-door roofing scams that should be avoided.

What are the apps used for scamming? ›

9 screen sharing apps scammers might use for financial fraud
  • 9 screen sharing apps scammers might use for financial fraud. Nov 28, 2023. ...
  • AnyDesk. ...
  • TeamViewer. ...
  • TeamViewer QuickSupport. ...
  • RemoteDroid. ...
  • TeamViewer Host. ...
  • AirMirror: Remote Control. ...
  • AirDroid: File & Remote Access.
Nov 28, 2023

How do you tell if a roofer is scamming you? ›

12 Most Common Roofing Scams and How to Avoid Them
  1. Storm Chasers. ...
  2. Extremely Low Bid. ...
  3. Mysterious or Exaggerated Damage. ...
  4. They Ask the Homeowner to Get the Permits. ...
  5. Discounted Materials. ...
  6. No Contract. ...
  7. No Insurance or License. ...
  8. High-Pressure or Time-Sensitive Sales.

How do roofers rip you off near me? ›

Some roofers will try to bait you with a ridiculously low starting bid, only to increase the price the minute it's time to sign the contract. Don't fall for it. Ask questions and get multiple quotes to see if your being led on by a dishonest contractor. Never make handshake or word-of-mouth agreements.

What is a red flag for a scammer? ›

Unsolicited offers: Don't respond to unsolicited cold calls, emails, junk mail, late-night commercials or infomercials, or social media posts that are either overly attractive or fear-inducing. These are all common tactics scammers use to entice you to engage.

How do you outwit a scammer? ›

That's why it's important to know how to outsmart a romance scammer and how to act fast if you think you've been scammed.
  1. Be aware of the warning signs. ...
  2. Evaluate your online presence. ...
  3. Approach online relationships slowly. ...
  4. Set up a phone or video chat early. ...
  5. Don't send compromising pictures.
Feb 13, 2024

What are three excuses a scammer uses? ›

Vague profiles and excuses: Scammers frequently fabricate stories about financial trouble, illness, or other misfortunes, manipulating their victims' sympathy to solicit money. They urge their victims to send gift cards, wire transfers, or cryptocurrency.

What is the biggest problem roofers face? ›

5 of the most common problems that roofing contractors face
  • Not taking note of the competition.
  • You're not prioritizing customer service.
  • You've underestimating (or overestimating) a job.
  • You're not marketing your business.
  • Not embracing new technologies.
Apr 23, 2024

How do you tell if a house has a bad roof? ›

10 Warning Signs You Need a New Roof
  1. Your Roof Is More Than 20 Years Old. ...
  2. Your Shingles Are Curling or Buckling. ...
  3. 3 You Have Leaks In Your Home. ...
  4. You See Dark Streaks On the Roof. ...
  5. Your Roof Is Sagging. ...
  6. You See Signs Of Sun Damage. ...
  7. You Notice Missing Or Broken Shingles. ...
  8. You See Rotting Wood On The Roof.
Jan 19, 2023

Should a roofer leave extra shingles? ›

Save Them for Future Repairs

Finding an exact match for your existing roof can be a problem if your supplier no longer has the same shingles you used. By having extra shingles at home, replacing damaged shingles can be hassle-free.

Is there an app to identify scammer? ›

Truecaller will also identify and warn you about robocallers, scammers, fraudsters, telemarketers and other unwanted or unknown phone numbers. The Advanced Spam Detector will automatically block and protect you from unwanted calls and SMS.

Can you track down a scammer? ›

Tracing a scammer demands persistence, leveraging online resources, and often legal assistance. Initiating with digital footprints like email addresses or phone numbers, employing reverse search tools, and reporting to authorities can unearth valuable leads.

What is the best payment method to not get scammed? ›

By and large, credit cards are easily the most secure and safe payment method to use when you shop online. Credit cards use online security features like encryption and fraud monitoring to keep your accounts and personal information safe.

How do I not get ripped off by a contractor? ›

Take these simple steps to avoid contractor scams:
  1. Thoroughly vet contractors – check credentials, experience, reputation.
  2. Require a detailed contract with payment terms, total cost, and timeline.
  3. Get multiple bids to help identify inflated pricing.
  4. Inspect work regularly and document with photos.
May 9, 2024

How do roofers secure themselves? ›

Some of the ways roofers can prevent falls include: Fall protection training. Using personal fall arrest systems, such as harnesses. Plans for how to rescue someone who does fall.

How do roofers keep from falling? ›

Personal Fall Arrest systems, or PFAs, are body harnesses roofers wear and attach to a roof anchor by a lanyard. All components must be able to hold a certain weight, fit in a certain way (and not be a belt, for example) and be tested regularly.

Why do roofers have a bad reputation? ›

Some unscrupulous roofers have been known to inflate damage claims, manipulate insurance companies, or even fabricate issues to profit from unnecessary repairs. They sometimes even offer to pay for a customer's insurance deductible, which is insurance fraud and punishable with fines and even jail time.


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