How Fraudulent Roofing Companies Target the Seniors in Repair Scams

How Fraudulent Roofing Companies Target the Seniors in Repair Scams

How Fraudulent Roofing Companies Target the Seniors in Repair Scams

picture of an elder couple being targeted by a fraudulent roofing company

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It’s good to remember that most roofing companies are honest and trustworthy. They do a great job of taking care of roofs and helping homeowners. But, just like in any area, there are a few tricky folks out there.

Sometimes, not-so-nice companies try to take advantage of seniors. They might promise things they can’t deliver or make repairs that aren’t really needed.

So, let’s chat about how to keep the fraudulent companies away and make sure your loved ones are safe and sound. Remember, we’re in this together, and with a little know-how, we can help protect those we care about!

Here is a common roofing scam that was used on a senior couple in the Far Horizons East neighborhood:

Unexpected Phone Call: Picture this: a roofing company, all friendly and cheerful, saying they are replacing many of your neighbors’ roofs because of a recent monsoon. They might even say, “We will come out and look for free! If your roof needs repair, your insurance will take care of it for you.”

But here’s the scoop: these folks did not have the best intentions. Typically, a reputable roofing company does not cold call during monsoon season because they are already working hard on real roof repairs.

False Claims: Scammers might exaggerate or make-up issues with the roof that don’t actually exist. In the case of our senior couple, the company sent out an inspector. He told them their roof was just fine and did not need repairs, but 2 days later the “senior inspector” called. He told them the young inspector did not know what he was doing and scheduled another free inspection. The senior inspector confirmed their roof needed replacing. This should send up all sorts of red flags.

Unnecessary Repairs: The scammer recommended roof replacement and volunteered to work with the insurance company to get this approved. The roofing company had also taken pictures of the “damaged”roof but did not show it to the couple because the pictures were for the insurance company.

Seniors are targeted in carpet cleaning scams
  1. High-Pressure Sales Tactics: He used aggressive sales tactics to pressure the senior couple into signing a roof repair contract before the insurance adjuster had looked at the roof. Scammers might perform unnecessary work without insurance consent and then demand payment. Or others convince seniors to file insurance claims for damage that doesn’t exist or exaggerate the extent of damage, leading to higher insurance premiums.

But here’s the good news: Our senior couple’s daughter did research on the company and was able to get her parents out of the contract before the disreputable roofing company started work. She then called Commercial Cleaning and Restoration. We did an inspection and found no damage at all!

So, if a roofing company calls with a super urgent repair tale, take a deep breath and remember, it’s okay to take your time and think things through and get a second opinion. No need to rush into anything!

Other roofing scams include:

  1. Bait and Switch: Some scammers might offer a low initial estimate, but once the work starts, they claim to have found more extensive damage and charge much more than originally quoted.
  2. Advance Payment: Fraudulent companies might demand a large upfront payment before any work begins and then disappear without completing the job.
  3. Unlicensed or Uninsured Contractors: Scammers often lack proper licenses, insurance, and permits, which can lead to subpar work or even accidents on the property.
  4. Phony References: They might provide fake references or online reviews to appear legitimate. It’s important to do thorough research and verify the company’s reputation.
  5. Payment Methods: Scammers might prefer cash payments or ask for payment through unconventional methods, making it difficult to trace the transaction or request refunds.

So, if a roofing company calls with a super urgent repair tale, take a deep breath and remember, it’s okay to take your time and think things through and get a second opinion. No need to rush into anything!

As a Senior, How Can You Protect Yourself?

Roofing scams targeting the elderly often exploiting their trust, lack of experience with home repairs, and sometimes limited mobility. Here is what you do to protect yourself or elderly loved ones from falling victim to roofing scams:

  • Do Your Research: Look up the company online, check their website, Google reviews, and ratings from trusted sources.
  • Get Multiple Quotes: Obtain estimates from multiple reputable roofing companies to compare pricing and recommendations.
  • Ask for Credentials: Verify the company’s licenses, insurance, and any other necessary certifications.
  • Take Your Time: Don’t be rushed into making quick decisions. Legitimate companies will give you time to consider your options.
  • Never Pay Upfront: Avoid making large upfront payments before any work has been completed. Reputable contractors usually request payment after the job is finished.
  • Avoid Cold Call Solicitation: Be cautious when dealing with companies that call unsolicited.
  • Consult a Family Member or Friend: If you’re unsure about a company, seek advice from someone you trust before making a decision especially if you find online searches difficult.

If you suspect you’ve encountered a roofing scam or any other fraudulent activity, you should report it to your local authorities and consumer protection agencies.

Some Helpful Hints for Seniors When It Comes to Roof Repairs

Taking care of your home, especially the roof, is super important. Here are some friendly hints to guide you through roof repairs and keep your living space cozy and secure.

  1. Regular Inspections: Get regular visual inspections of your roof. Have the roofer look for missing or damaged shingles, signs of leaks or water damage, and any other visible issues. Do not get on the roof yourself; too many people fall.
  2. Address Water Issues Promptly: If you notice any water leaks, call our emergency number (520) 391-4615. Small issues can escalate quickly, leading to more extensive and costly repairs.
  3. Ask to See Photos: When discussing the inspection, ask for pictures and a clear explanation of the recommended solution. A reputable contractor will be happy to show you photos of your roof.
  4. Verify Credentials: Before hiring a contractor, verify their licenses, insurance, and any other necessary credentials. Legitimate contractors won’t hesitate to provide this information.
  5. Understand Contracts: If you decide to proceed with repairs, read and understand the contract thoroughly before signing. Don’t hesitate to ask for clarification if something is unclear.
  6. Avoid Upfront Payments: Be cautious of contractors who demand a large upfront payment before any work has started. This is often a red flag for potential scams.
  7. Consult Trusted Individuals: If you’re unsure about a particular repair or contractor, seek advice from family members, friends, or neighbors who have experience with roofing or home repairs.

Remember, you’ve got this! Taking care of your home sweet home doesn’t have to be a hassle. Just follow these friendly tips, and you’ll be on the path to a happy and healthy roof.

Educating Elderly Parents About Roofing Scams

Educating elderly parents about roofing scams is an important way to protect them from potential fraud. Here’s a gentle and effective approach for adult children to take when discussing this topic:

  1. Use Real Stories: Share real-life stories of people who fell victim to such scams, emphasizing the emotional and financial toll it took on them. This can make the information more relatable.
  2. Empower Them: Let your parents know that they have the power to protect themselves by being informed and cautious. Explain that it’s okay to ask questions, take time to make decisions, and seek a second opinion.
  3. Involve Them in Research: Offer to research local roofing companies together. Show them how to read online reviews, check company websites, and verify credentials. Make it a joint effort.
  4. Encourage Consultation: Suggest that they consult you or other trusted individuals before making any decisions about roof repairs. Let them know that you’re there to support them and offer guidance.

Remember, your goal is to empower your parents with knowledge and tools, not to overwhelm them. Approach the conversation with empathy and understanding, and emphasize that you’re looking out for their best interests.

Water Damage Restoration • Roof Repair
Water Cleanup • Emergency Tarping

At Commercial Cleaning & Restoration, we want the best for you and your home and we will work to prove it to you.

We also clean carpets, area rugs, and upholstery.


(520) 214-4376 or Contact us by Email

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