Roofing Scams – Educate Yourself

Every year, countless homeowners fall victim to roofing scams. The roof is one of the most fundamental aspects of your home, and you want to ensure it can properly protect you and your family. A large number of homeowners do not have experience handling roof repairs and contractors, leaving themselves vulnerable to fraud. In the state of Florida, unlicensed contractors are targeting more victims each year, resulting in shoddy roof replacements and ever-increasing insurance rates. Scammers are becoming more crafty, not only in their initial approach but their execution as well. There are varying levels of scams taking place every day, all costing homeowners wasted time and money. There are several red flags to be wary of, with the most common including contractors who request money up front, those who neglect to offer installation or manufacturer warranties, or roofers who use subcontractors to complete the work. It is important to always do your research when considering a company for something as significant as a roof repair. Always be sure to read online reviews on consumer driven websites, and make sure the company is in good standing with the BBB (Better Business Bureau).

Roofing Contractor Scams

The Free Roof Inspection: Typically, when business is slow or the economy has been on the decline, roofers will start going door to door seeking potential clients. They will offer to inspect your roof for free, and after the inspection they will claim they observed damage that warrants a new roof or major repair. Some of these roofers will intentionally cause damage to your roof during their inspection, or they might show you a picture of someone else’s roof and allege that it is yours. These roofers will seem polite, knowledgeable, and helpful. They will encourage you to submit a claim to your insurance company. Scammers are well-versed in the proper language to effectively manipulate the consumer, and they will withhold crucial details. They will give you a low estimate for repairs, and have a false sense of urgency. What they will neglect to tell you is that insurance companies will not pay to repair an older roof. You will be responsible for paying the total bill, in addition to having an unnecessary claim against your homeowners insurance.

Insurance Companies Are Getting Wise to The Scammers

Insurance companies are constantly dealing with roofing scams that victimize unsuspecting homeowners. The tricks are constantly evolving, but there are a few tried and true scams you need to watch out for. When a roofer goes door to door to drum up business on behalf of a company, that is usually a telltale sign of fraud. Accredited and insured roofers will typically have an online presence, like a website or social media pages, along with reviews from actual customers. Some out-of-towner roofers chase inclement weather, and prey on homeowners’ emotions. Always choose a local roofer with a physical business location. Many of the fraudulent out-of-towner roofers have a PO Box address, which is a huge red flag. Another scam to be careful of is when the salesman has a sense of urgency and demands immediate action for roofing repairs. Homeowners think time is of the essence and act quickly out of fear. Legitimate roofing companies won’t pressure you. They will give you adequate information to make an informed decision, and allow you the time to decide the best course of action you want to take. Roofing repairs can be expensive. Scammers will initially lowball the estimate, and give you a too-good-to-be-true quote. The costs will quickly escalate after the work begins, and you may find yourself in over your head. If a roofer requests a deposit up front, that is another huge red flag. Some roofers will take that deposit and vanish. Other roofers will request a deposit to cover the materials and then string you along, quickly demanding more money as time goes on. A legitimate roofing company will have the materials and resources to complete the repair. You should NEVER have to pay the roofer until after the job has started.

Hail Damage Claims

hail damage on shingle tiles

Hail damage on shingle tiles.

Insurance claims for hail damage have risen exponentially, yet according to The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the number of hail storms has been stagnant. The drastic inconsistencies are due to unprofessional roofers making bogus claims of hail damage. How do they trick homeowners into believing hail damage that simply doesn’t exist? The scammers create the evidence themselves in what is described as “manufactured damage.” After these fraudulent roofers charm their way up to your roof under the guise of a generous free inspection, they use dimes and ball peen hammers to replicate hail damage. Another way to manufacture the damage is to pry off shingles and claim it is evidence of wind damage. Some scammers will even show you pictures of a roof similar to yours with weather-induced damage, and allege it is from your house.

Roofing scams have been steadily increasing insurance premiums for all consumers. The Florida Roofing and Sheet Metal Contractors Association (FRSA) estimate insurance premiums may rise by as much as 10 percent! It is crucial to protect both yourself and your insurance company from potential threats. When you file a claim, it is added to your insurance record. The claims you make affect all future claims you may need to file. If your insurance company discovers you filed a fraudulent roofing claim, they can immediately cancel your coverage or choose to not renew your insurance. Additionally, consumers across the country have been charged with committing insurance fraud. You may be the victim of a roofing scam, but you are in a legally binding contract with your homeowner’s insurance company. In your contract, you agreed to trade your annual premium for protection against home damages. Your insurance company can hold you liable for submitting false documents on home repairs. Be mindful of all paperwork you are asked to sign. Never sign a contract with a roofer before your insurance company comes out to inspect the damage. Never sign an Assignment of Benefits (AOB) contract. An AOB contract gives the roofer full reign to collect all claim money directly from your insurance company. Anytime a roofer volunteers to either pay the deductible or waive it entirely, it is fraud. Contact the FRSA to find a reputable roofer in your area.

Subcontractors

Fraudulent roofers will sometimes use subcontractors to complete the job. These subcontractors may use low quality materials and work hurriedly for a small percentage. In some cases, the subcontractors do not even get paid. Subcontractors may lack the insurance, license, knowledge, and experience to successfully repair your roof. The unqualified subcontractors may leave you with a mess of debris and rusty roofing nails to clean up, and a poorly repaired roof that needs to be redone. The new roof you invested in may have an expiration date of a few years. This is why you never want to pay a roofer up front; it is a huge risk to pay for unrendered services.

Roofing repairs should never be done on a whim. Scammers prey on your emotions, pressure you to make quick decisions, and give you low estimates to trick you into thinking you’re saving money. Remember: roofers going door to door or showing up unannounced is a red flag for fraud. Roofers who claim they will pay your deductible or waive it entirely, roofers who chase inclement weather, contractors who demand money before the project starts, or salesmen who give ever-increasing quotes; these are all major red flags for roofing scams.

Roofing scams have become a lucrative business. Luckily, it is easier than ever before to properly do your research before hiring a roofing company to handle your repairs. You have a great deal of information available at your fingertips. You can investigate local roofing companies, ensure a contractor’s good standing on the BBB website, read over references and reviews on consumer-driven websites, and ensure a company is FRSA approved. It is also beneficial to scope out a company’s physical address. You should be able to request their licenses and insurance, review the manufacturer and labor warranties, and get a good look at how the business operates.

Roof Top Services of Central Florida is a family run business with over 26 years of industry experience. Our expertise and exclusive use of high quality GAF roofing materials guarantee a roof you and your family will enjoy for years. Our team is licensed and insured, and we work diligently to repair your roof within your budget and timeline. We offer direct insurance billing, in addition to no money down financing. We provide you with a complete roof installation warranty, as well as a long-term manufacturer warranty. We never use subcontractors, and all work is completed by our highly qualified staff. Our BBB rating is A+ and we are FRSA approved. If you decide to not work with us, please make sure you work with another local and accredited BBB roofer. Roofing repairs done wrong require more time and money in the end. Save yourself the headache and financial heartache, and always do your research on your contractor. Don’t fall victim to unprofessional contractors robbing you of your money and safety.

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Roof Top Services Receives 2016-2017 GAF Master Elite Contractor Status

Roof Top Services of Central Florida, Inc., of Winter Springs, Florida, has received the most prestigious award GAF has to offer: The GAF President’s Club Award. This highly coveted award recognizes Roof Top Services of Central Florida Inc. as an “elite of the elite” residential roofing contractor in the United States.

GAF logoGAF is North America’s largest roofing manufacturer, and only GAF Master Elite® Contractors can compete for its residential President’s Club Award. To qualify for this award, a residential roofing contractor must demonstrate an exceptional level of excellence in their business, especially in the areas of Installation Excellence, Consumer Protection, and Installer Training.

Roof Top Services of Central Florida has been a GAF Master Elite® Contractor since 2002. To become a Master Elite® Contractor—a status that less than 2% of roofing contractors nationwide have achieved—a candidate must demonstrate proper licensing and adequate insurance, have a proven reputation and show commitment to ongoing professional training.

In 2016, Roof Top Services of Central Florida surveyed its Orlando customers, asking their main considerations before hiring a roofing contractor. Customers were asked to visit the website and rate the company based on quality of products, overall reputation, punctuality, care for the property, and fair prices. Roof Top Services regularly meets all of these customer concerns. The company uses only the highest-quality roofing materials from GAF, professionally installed and carrying long-term warranties. Its reputation is evident from its A+ accreditation with the Better Business Bureau and the much positive feedback on Angie’s List, Yelp, and Google. The staff is flexible and works to meet customers at the times most convenient for them. For clean-up, Roof Top Services utilizes a magnetic device, which sweeps across a yard to pick up all metallic debris. Finally, the company negotiates favorable bulk pricing with its vendors, allowing it to pass on those savings to end customers.

When customers discover leaks or other roof problems, they may be concerned that a reroof is the only solution. Roof Top Services of Central Florida Inc. will inspect a roof to determine if it’s in a condition that requires replacement or whether a roof restoration is the more appropriate option. The company’s years of experience help customers to learn if they can save money with a restoration, which can dramatically lengthen a roof’s life span if done at the right time. Roof Top Services Central Florida Inc. restores and replaces asphalt, metal, tile, and slate residential roofs, as well as low-slope and commercial metal roofs for businesses in greater Orlando.

Mindful of the extreme weather that can affect the Orlando area, Roof Top Services offers a 24-hour emergency roof repair service. The company can handle emergency tarp-overs when necessary; it also performs temporary repair services. It can fix or mitigate a variety of problems, including Shingle cracking, broken flashing, leaking skylights, standing water, and water stains, and it works with customers to complete their insurance claims.

Never using subcontractors, the team at Roof Top Services prides itself on its highly-rated testimonials and continually provides roofing advice to customers. Whether the customer is residential or commercial, the company treats everyone the same and customizes roof solutions that precisely fit the customer’s needs. Standing behind its products and workmanship, Roof Top Services works hard to gain the loyalty of repeat customers, ultimately making them “customers for life.”
About Roof Top Services of Central Florida, Inc.

For more than 26 years, Roof Top Services of Central Florida has been diligently serving residential and commercial roofing customers in the Orlando area. Family-owned and operated, the company has the simple philosophy of providing the best roofing products at competitive prices. Providing the peace of mind that accompanies services that surpass customer expectations, the company completes projects on time and within budget. With free estimates and roofing warranties that are second to none, Roof Top Services strives to serve its customers with the goal of assuring complete satisfaction.

Roof Top Services of Central Florida, Inc.
1150 Belle Ave. Suite #1060
Winter Springs, FL 32708
(407) 696-7663
[email protected]

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Roofs For Troops…We’re In!

 

 

 

Military Couple Gets Roofing Benefits

Our troops are often away from home for extended periods of time. It’s difficult being away from home, especially when you come home and discover the house needs some work. You might just need some repairs and maintenance to make sure your roof weathers the next storm without needing buckets underneath all of the drips. You might need a complete roof replacement for the peace of mind that comes with knowing your family will be safe underneath the roof you’ve provided them.

To show our appreciation for everything our military personnel do – and have done – for us and our country, Roof Top Services has an offer for all of our active or retired military personnel. We know you sacrifice a lot to put a roof over your family’s head and we’re offering a $500 rebate on roofing services.

How are we doing this? We’re teaming up with GAF, North America’s largest roofing manufacturer, making roofing shingles and materials. GAF provides active and retired military a $250 rebate off their Lifetime Roofing System when it’s installed by a GAF Factory-Certified Contractor.

As a GAF-Factory Master Elite Contractor, Roof Top Services should be your first call if you need any work done on your roof. We’re also throwing our support behind our troops and will match the $250 offer from GAF to save retired and active military personnel a total of $500 on our services.

The work we do on your house will be done as if it was our own. We work with GAF because it’s important to us to provide quality materials to our clients. We work with only quality materials and find the best in the type of roofing you want for your home.

Our mechanics are highly-skilled and attend regular ongoing in-house and manufacturer training. We maintain the most up-to-date installation techniques and are always finding the most effective and efficient ways to repair and maintain a roof.

Using GAF as a supplier allows us to guarantee repairs and construction on your roof will meet your long-term needs, but also stay within your budget. That’s our favorite part. Plus, the Roofs for Troops initiative makes us even more affordable than ever.

If you’ve been thinking about making the most of the natural light in your home by installing a skylight, this is the deal you’ve been waiting for. If you’ve been delaying those repairs on your roof because you’re worried about the expense, now is the time. Roof Top Services appreciate the service of our military personnel and the sacrifices they make. This is our way of giving back and showing our appreciation.

Contact Roof Top Services on 407-696-7663 or [email protected] to request a free quote and take advantage of Roofs for Troops.

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What Makes Orlando A Great City

Orlando, FL – Tourism, Business, and Culture

Orlando, “The City Beautiful” as it’s called, is known throughout the world because of the names that call this city home. However Orlando, and Central Florida as a whole, is filled with so much more than Disney World, Universal, or SeaWorld, regardless of how much impact they have.

From Small Beginnings

While tourism has become the major economic driver in the region, Orlando actually started in an entirely different industry; Citrus. Even before becoming incorporated, the surrounding area was ripe for citrus farms, more specifically oranges (hence the name Orange County). However, after a long stint of cold seasons called the Great Freeze, the crops dwindled and only a few families remained in power. These families would help to develop the city over the next few decades, and usher in a new era of prosperity.

In spite of the development, the Central Florida region was still predominantly swampland; unattractive to new businesses and residents. What was attractive was the central location between both the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean. For this reason, slowly but surely, the land continued to be bought up and people moved in, roads were developed, and eventually the Orlando International Airport (what would become one of the most trafficked airports in the United States).

Orlando had become a destination, but it wasn’t until Walt Disney purchased the land that would become Disney property that it truly skyrocketed. One of the most lucrative land purchases in our history, the area we call “Tourist Town” has grown quickly since the late 60’s, now home to multiple theme parks, large resorts, and other tourism generating destinations.

Sights to See

In spite of the relative rapidity of industrial growth, certain areas of nature have been preserved. While Orlando’s orange groves have all but gone away, there are still natural springs, beaches, and many trails to travel. Just in the Central Florida region alone, we have Blue Springs, Rock Springs, and perhaps the largest in the state, Wekiwa Springs. Each of these is home to the most beautiful clear waters that run on average 70 degrees Fahrenheit all year round!

If you take the opportunity to visit any of these nature preserves, you will have a good chance of seeing some of the animals that visit Orlando or call it home. Perhaps the most notable of these is the Manatee, which occupy the rivers and springs throughout Central Florida as they migrate. These are a protected species and we must do our part to ensure their safety for years to come.

Due to the infrastructure in the region, Orlando is also perfectly placed for beach access. If you are looking for a beach getaway, you’re only an hour and a half from either the East Coast or the West Coast of the state. Both sides have drastically different beaches, but both are incredibly beautiful.

We make it a point in Orlando to keep nature thriving, and specifically block off construction in certain areas. So while the old swampland that is now Disney property has gone away, there is still much beauty to enjoy.

Business in Orlando

Due in large part to the previous two points, Orlando has become a destination for new residents. Every year more and more people come to our humble city to call it home. As with new population comes the potential for new business. We are one of the fastest growing business cities in the nation, and have thousands of small businesses and startups who have started here.

There’s a large pool of people to pull from for a workforce, and there’s never a shortage of new ideas to develop. While the city proper is relatively small, the entire region is considered “Greater Orlando”, and that encompasses miles and miles of developed land and businesses. If you are looking to relocate or find a new place to build a business, there is no limit to your ability to do so in Orlando.

Transportation and Infrastructure

One of the most important aspects to any city is your ability to get around and see everything there is to see. Orlando is steadily improving upon this concept, and has begun constructing a transit system to help get around more easily. The SunRail is a train system that runs throughout the Central Florida region, and has multiple stops in many of the surrounding towns. If you don’t want to ride the train, there’s Interstate 4 (which is currently being expanded into more lanes). I4 calls Orlando it’s heart, as the road connects Tampa Bay on the West Coast, to Daytona Beach on the East Coast. There’s no faster way to travel throughout the area than by I4.

If you’re out of state, or even country, or you’re just looking to travel a lot, Orlando is also home to MCO or Orlando International Airport. Already one of the largest airports in the country, it’s soon going to be undergoing an expansion to add more terminals. The reason for this is that Orlando is one of the premiere destinations, and sees more people come in and out than majority of other airports in the nation. In other words, if you’re going to travel to or from the city, you’ll always have a flight out.

Multiculturalism

Development and industry are important aspects of any city, but the people who make up the citizens are what truly make it great. Due in large part to tourism, Orlando is one of the most diverse cities in the country. People from all around the world relocate here and plant their roots, young and old. You can drive down a stretch of Orange Blossom Trail and see restaurants from thirty different cultures.

Because of the variety of people in the city, Orlando is also one of the most tolerant and progressive cities. It’s hard to walk down the street and not see people going out of their way to help others. It’s truly a community of people that live here. All walks of life, and religious beliefs, intermingle and cohabitate to make Orlando not just a destination but a home.

What makes this place “The City Beautiful” is that it’s more than meets the eye. No matter where you look, there’s something for everyone. So whether you’re looking to indulge in the attractions or tourist scene, take in a lovely stroll in nature, engage in new business, or experience new cultures, Orlando is the location for you to visit or call home.

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Roofing Terms

Roof Terms

Are you needing roofing services but having a hard time understanding roof service lingo? The following are some basic roof terms any prospective client can benefit from learning:

  • Roof Repairing and Restoring: the process of repairing or fixing parts of a roof that have broken
    o Roof damage: can result from weather such as hail, rain, and wind
    o Re-roofing: the process of laying new roofing
  •  Roof Replacement: the process of installing an entirely new roof. This can be done for residential or commercial properties.
  • Residential Roofing: roofing designed specifically for homes
  • Commercial Roofing: roofing specifically for business and companies—due to the nature of commercial roofing, this is a larger project than home roofing
  •  Important parts of a roof that you need to know:
    o Cornice: wood or metal finishing on the roof
    o Counter flashing: flashings on the top of a vertical structure
    o Eaves: the edge of the roof that overhangs
    o Snow guard: this roof part is usually around three feet long; the purpose of snow guards is to attempt to keep water out of your home in order to prevent leaks and water damage
    o EPDM: rubber used on flatter or lightly sloping roofs
    o Rafter: structural and made of wood; sheathing is attached under
    o Sheathing: boards or sheet material nailed to the rafters; roofing materials are secured to sheathing
    o Pitch/slope: the number of vertical inches in regards to horizontal distance
    o Shingles: a type of roofing material that is most associated with typical home roofs
    o Sheet metal: a type of durable roofing material made from aluminum or steel that can be used instead of typical shingles. It is durable against weather and lasts for a longer time. It can be made to look like actual sheets of metal or like shingles.
    o Square: term for the amount needed to cover 100 square feet of roofing
    o Valley: the place where the two roof slopes come together to form a “v” shape

A lot goes into roofing. These are just some of the basic terms that might help you understand roof jargon a little more. If you would like more information on roofing, feel free to contact us. You can call us at (407)696-7663 or use the contact form on our website to get in touch with us. We hope to help you with your roofing needs!

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Leaky Roofs

Leaky Roofs: Minimizing the Damage Before a Roofer Arrives

From the appearance of a water stain on your ceiling to water dripping right on top of your computer, a leaky roof can be an extremely unsettling event. Our roofs are supposed to keep the weather out after all, right?

While water dripping from your ceiling will likely send you running for the phone to call a roofer—and that is exactly what you should do—you might just shrug off the appearance of a bulge or a dark water mark on your ceiling. DO NOT WAIT! It may not seem like a problem now, but that doesn’t mean that water isn’t pooling on your ceiling waiting to make a nasty and expensive mess when it comes crashing down.

Whether it’s 2:00 in the morning or a two hour wait for a roofer to come, you should not wait for a professional to arrive to take preventative measures. Remember, you never know when pooling water or a small leak is going to become much worst.

—First, you want to grab a screwdriver—a Phillips-head or standard, it doesn’t matter—and a container such as a trashcan or a bucket.

—Next, place your container under the leak, water stain, or bulge.

—Finally, puncture a hole through your ceiling where the water is dripping or from the center of the stain or bulge.

Now, I know you must think that sounds crazy, but it’s a lot easier to fix a small hole than the large one a pool of water crashing through your ceiling will create. The small puncture hole will allow the water to adequately drain from your ceiling instead of pooling.

Call a Roofer! Seriously.

It might be tempting, once you’ve averted catastrophe to make a fun DIY project out of fixing the leak in your roof, but let’s face it, you’re no Bob Villa. Unless you really know what you are doing (i.e. you’re a roofer) do not attempt to fix the leak. A damaged roof presents serious threats to your house and your safety, and there’s no telling what the problem could be, so leave it up to the roof repair professionals.

But, just because they’re the professionals, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be a discerning consumer. You want to make sure your roofer heads up into your attic to check the inside of your roof as well as climbs up a ladder to check the outside of your roof. You can never be sure where the issue lies.

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