1. They Offer To Pay Your Deductible
As of September 1st, 2019, Texas passed a new law (House Bill 2102) that requires policyholders to pay their insurance deductible. In the past, contractors have offered “free roofs” by waiving their customer’s deductible, thus duping them into committing insurance fraud. This new law not only affects the contractors, but the customers as well.
“Texas law requires a person insured under a property insurance policy to pay any deductible applicable to a claim made under the policy. It is a violation of this Texas law for a person or business paid wholly or partly from proceeds of a property insurance claim to knowingly allow the insured person to fail to pay. Or assist the insured person’s failure to pay, the applicable insurance deductible.”
Failure to pay your deductible can result in obtaining a Class B Misdemeanor offense of 180 days in jail and a fine up to $2,000 for both the contractor and the customer. To read more about this, click here.
2. Check if They’re Licensed & Insured
A lot of roofing companies (particularly in Texas) will apply for insurance and then immediately cancel just so they can get the form. It’s important to check if their insurance is current and active. If anything happens to the contractor, subcontractor, delivery driver, etc., you’ll be held personally responsible.
In the state of Texas, roofing contractors do not need to be licensed to operate their business. It is important to check if the contractor is licensed with RCAT (Roofing Contractors Association of Texas).
“Anyone can call themselves a roofer in Texas and they are not required to be knowledgeable, insured, licensed, or even registered with the state. Roofing is a highly skilled trade and the roof is structurally the most important component protecting the contents and integrity of the home or business! Texas residents deserve a higher standard so the RCAT Licensed Roofing Contractor program was developed to increase consumer protection and secure public confidence in the roofing industry by elevating the roofing contractor’s knowledge and professionalism through voluntary self-regulation.”
Roofing Contractor’s Association of Texas
3. Read Reviews
Check contractors’ quality of work by their Google and Facebook reviews. It’s one thing to have good reviews, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re seasoned experts. Look for a contractor that has 50+ reviews that are at least 4.5 stars. This means that they have good experience and a proven track record of quality work.
Going down to the decking
On your roof, there is 3 layers to pay attention to: the decking, felt layers, and shingles.
The decking is the bottom, wood section of your roof. In most states, it is required by law for roofing contractors to go down to the decking when replacing a roof. This is because a problematic deck can cause significant damage to your home. In fact, your manufacturer’s warranty & insurance may not cover damage to your home because of a bad roofing crew, and you may be paying out of pocket for the damage. In Texas, it is not required by law for roofing contractors to go down to the decking. So, make sure the roofing contractor you choose does this to ensure a quality roof and peace of mind.
In some cases, some roofing contractors will choose to cut corners when replacing your roof. They could even use discontinued shingles, which no longer carry a manufacturer’s warranty. And the roofing contractor, knowing this, will not honor their warranty if something should happen to your roof.
Hopefully, these tips will save you from choosing a bad roofing contractor this hail season. Do your research and choose a contractor that is reputable and doesn’t cut corners. If you ever have any questions or concerns about your roof, reach out to us and we’ll be more than happy to assist you.
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