Roofing Scams Are On the Rise Police Warn

Homeowners in Kingston, Ontario, are being cautioned by local police about a recent roofing scam where unsuspecting individuals have been conned out of thousands of dollars. In a specific case, two men posing as professional roofers approached a resident, convincing them of the urgent need for roof and chimney repairs and persuading them to pay a large down payment. (These types of roofing scams happen all the time in Durham Region. Hire a trusted roofing company!)

As the pair initiated destruction to the property, they claimed additional work was necessary to prevent the walls from collapsing. When the homeowner attempted to back out of the agreement and obtain a refund, the alleged roofers disappeared. Kingston Police are now urging citizens to exercise caution, thoroughly check references, and conduct due diligence before hiring contractors for any work.

How to Identify & Avoid Roofing Scams

When it comes to roofing, the integrity of your home or business is at stake, so it’s crucial to avoid scams that could lead to poor workmanship, unnecessary costs, or outright fraud. CD Roofing & Construction Ltd. is a reputable Canadian roofing company based in Durham Region, Ontario, and we’ve been here since 1995. Not everyone wants premium shingle installers so if you decide to go with an unknown company, here are a few tips on how to avoid roofing scams:

sneaky roofer trying to do a roofing scam

1. Research and Verify Credentials

Do Your Homework: Before hiring a roofing contractor, conduct thorough research. Check online reviews, testimonials, and the company’s standing with the Better Business Bureau (BBB).

Verify Licensing and Insurance: Ensure the contractor is licensed to operate in your area and carries both liability insurance and worker’s compensation. This protects you in case of accidents or damage.

2. Beware of Door-to-Door Salesmen

High-Pressure Tactics: Be wary of contractors who come to your door offering a “deal” because they’re “in the neighborhood.” Reputable companies rarely need to solicit door-to-door.

Storm Chasers: After severe weather, be cautious of storm chasers who target affected areas. They may perform shoddy work and leave town, making it hard to reach them for follow-up. We offer emergency services after storms.

3. Get Multiple Quotes

Comparison Shopping: Obtain at least three quotes from different contractors to compare prices and get a sense of what your roofing project should reasonably cost.

Detailed Proposals: Ensure each quote includes detailed information on the work to be done, materials, labor, and any warranties. This clarity helps prevent unexpected costs.

roofer writing a detailed proposal

4. Avoid Large Upfront Payments

Reasonable Deposits: While a deposit may be required, it should not exceed 20-30% of the total project cost. Be wary of contractors who demand large upfront payments.

Payment Structure: Agree on a payment schedule that aligns with the progress of the work. Avoid paying the full amount until the job is completed to your satisfaction.

5. Sign a Contract

Written Agreement: Always insist on a detailed contract that outlines every aspect of the job, including costs, timelines, materials, and any promises made during sales pitches.

Read Carefully: Understand every part of the contract before signing. Don’t hesitate to ask for clarifications or adjustments if something doesn’t seem right.

6. Check References and Past Work

Proof of Quality: Ask for references and photos of previous projects. If possible, visit a site where the contractor is currently working or has completed a roof.

Local Reputation: A local contractor with a long-standing reputation in the community is often a safer choice than a company that is new to the area or operates nationally.

7. Know Your Rights

Cooling-Off Period: Familiarize yourself with your rights to cancel a contract. In Ontario, for instance, you usually have a 10-day cooling-off period to cancel a home renovation contract without penalty.

Warranty and Guarantees: Understand the warranty on both materials and workmanship. Reputable contractors like CD Roofing & Construction Ltd. stand behind their work and will address any issues post-installation.

Final thoughts…

By following these guidelines, homeowners and businesses can significantly reduce the risk of falling victim to roofing scams. We at CD Roofing & Construction Ltd. emphasize the importance of due diligence, clear agreements, and working with trusted, reputable contractors to ensure your roofing project is completed efficiently, affordably, and to the highest standard.

Frequently Asked Questions

roofing scams are rising in Canada

What are typical indicators of a roofing scam?

  • Unsolicited door-to-door sales pitches
  • High-pressure sales tactics
  • Requests for large upfront payments
  • Offer to use leftover materials from another job at a discounted price
  • Lack of proper identification and company contact information

How can I confirm a roofing contractor’s authenticity?

  • Verify their company information such as address, contact number, and website
  • Check if they are licensed and insured
  • Ask for client references and read online reviews
  • Obtain written estimates from multiple contractors

What steps should I take if I suspect I’m a victim of a roofing scam?

  • Don’t provide any additional payments
  • Document all interactions with the perpetrator
  • Contact your local police department to file a report
  • Notify your bank or credit card company if you have already issued a payment

What measures are Kingston police implementing to combat roofing fraud?

Kingston police are warning homeowners about roofing scams and advising them on how to spot and avoid falling victim to contractor fraud.

How do I report questionable roofing incidents to the authorities?

Contact your local police department or consumer protection agency to report any suspicious activity. In Kingston, you can reach the police by calling 613-549-4660.

What legal consequences do roofing scam perpetrators face?

Legal repercussions for those caught running roofing scams may include criminal charges such as fraud, theft, and operating without a license. Convictions can result in fines, probation, or imprisonment, depending on the severity of the offenses.

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