When it comes to repairing or replacing your roof, especially after a severe storm, the choice of roofing contractor can make all the difference. In the wake of recent hail storms in Milwaukee, many homeowners are faced with the urgent need for roof repairs or replacements.

Homeowners often face a crucial decision: should they hire a local roofing company or go with storm chasers who swoop in after a storm? Here, we’ll explore the key differences between these options and why choosing a local roofing company is always the best decision.

Understanding Storm Chasers

Storm chasers are contractors who travel to areas affected by severe weather events, such as hurricanes, hailstorms, or heavy windstorms. They often go door-to-door offering their services immediately after a storm, promising quick fixes and fast insurance claims. While this might seem convenient, storm chasers come with several drawbacks:

  1. Lack of Local Knowledge: Storm chasers are not familiar with the local climate, building codes, or common roofing issues specific to your area. This lack of knowledge can lead to improper repairs or installations that may not withstand future weather conditions.
  2. Questionable Quality: Many storm chasers prioritize quantity over quality. Their goal is to complete as many jobs as quickly as possible before moving on to the next storm-hit area. This often results in subpar workmanship and the use of inferior materials.
  3. Limited Accountability: Once storm chasers leave town, they are hard to track down. If problems arise after the job is completed, homeowners may find it difficult to get in touch with the contractor for warranty claims or follow-up repairs.
  4. Potential for Fraud: There have been instances where storm chasers collect insurance money or upfront payments and disappear without completing the work. This can leave homeowners with unfinished repairs and financial losses.
  5. Lack of Insurance and Licensing: Storm chasers might not be properly licensed or insured in your state, which can pose significant legal and financial risks. If an unlicensed contractor damages your property or gets injured on the job, you could be held liable.

Tactics Used by Storm Chasers

Storm chasers often employ aggressive and sometimes misleading tactics to secure business quickly. Here are a few common strategies to watch out for:

  1. High-Pressure Sales Tactics: Storm chasers may use high-pressure sales techniques, pushing homeowners to sign contracts immediately. They often create a sense of urgency, claiming that their services are limited or that insurance claims need to be filed right away.
  2. Door-to-Door Solicitation: After a storm, storm chasers frequently go door-to-door in affected neighborhoods. They might offer free inspections or claim that they can get the repair costs covered entirely by insurance, even if the damage is minor.
  3. Upfront Payments: Be wary of contractors who demand large upfront payments. While a deposit is standard practice, reputable local companies typically do not require substantial payment before the work begins.
  4. Inflated Damage Reports: Some storm chasers may exaggerate the extent of the damage to secure more work and higher payments. This can lead to unnecessary repairs or inflated insurance claims, which can affect your premiums in the long run while the storm chasers pockets get lined.

How to Spot a Storm Chaser

Knowing the signs of a storm chaser can help you avoid falling victim to their tactics:

  • Out-of-State Plates: Contractors with out-of-state license plates or unfamiliar branding are often storm chasers.
  • Lack of Local References: Ask for local references and recent work samples. Storm chasers typically cannot provide credible local references.
  • No Permanent Address: Reputable contractors will have a local office and address. Storm chasers often do not have a permanent business location in the area.
  • Pressure to Sign Immediately: Be cautious of anyone pressuring you to sign a contract on the spot. Take your time to research and compare contractors.

The Benefits of Hiring Local Roofing Companies

In contrast, local roofing companies are rooted in the community and offer numerous advantages:

  1. Reputation and Reliability: Local roofers have a reputation to uphold in their community. They rely on word-of-mouth referrals and positive reviews, which means they are more likely to provide high-quality work and excellent customer service.
  2. Knowledge of Local Conditions: Local roofing companies understand the specific challenges posed by the regional climate and weather patterns. They use materials and techniques best suited for your area, ensuring long-lasting results.
  3. Accessibility and Accountability: With a local roofer, you have the assurance of accessibility. If any issues arise, you can easily contact them for repairs or warranty claims. Their physical presence in the community means they are accountable for their work.
  4. Support for the Local Economy: Hiring a local roofing company supports the local economy by keeping money within the community. This, in turn, helps create jobs and contributes to the overall well-being of the area.

While storm chasers may offer quick fixes, the long-term benefits of hiring a local roofing company far outweigh the temporary appearance of convenience. Local roofers bring expertise, reliability, and a commitment to quality that storm chasers simply cannot match. When it comes to something as important as your roof, trust the professionals who are part of your community and invested in your satisfaction.

Choose Community Roofing and Restoration for your roofing needs. Serving our community since 1975, we provide top-notch service, quality materials, and peace of mind that your home is in good hands. Contact us today for a consultation and let us help you protect your home from the elements.

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We’ve been working the residents of Southeastern Wisconsin since 1975. Contact us today for a quick quote on your roofing project.