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The Sound of Ideas

Consumer Affairs: Storm Chasers and Contractor Conundrums

Posted Monday, July 26, 2010

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Consumer Affairs: Storm Chasers and Contractor Conundrums Storms can do a lot of damage. They bring hail that can destroy your roof, wind that can blow over trees and icicles that can bring down gutters. Then there is the storm after the storm; sometimes unscrupulous contractors come into town and inflate repair costs which can cause everyone's insurance rates to rise. Monday, join Mike McIntyre and consumer columnist for The Plain Dealer, Sheryl Harris, to talk about home repair pitfalls and how to avoid them.


Other, Community/Human Interest, Housing/Real Estate, Miscellaneous


Sheryl Harris, Consumer Columnist, The Plain Dealer
Brad Opacich, President, North Coast Home Improvement Corp. & Board Member, National Association of the Remodeling Industry of Northeast Ohio
Fran Wesley, Vice President, Personal Insurance Division, Dawson Companies
Vic Wlaszyn, President, The Better Business Bureau of Akron

Additional Information

Everyone has a role to play in cleaning up the remodeling and storm chasing business in Ohio, by Sheryl Harris, The Plain Dealer

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Please follow our community discussion rules when composing your comments.

Rich 8:21 AM 7/26/10

The other side of this discussion is the higher costs that contractors are charging. Because there is so much work, they can charge higher prices. This is especially true for the more reputable companies. They don’t have to negotiate fees because they have many other customers in line.

Sam 8:23 AM 7/26/10

Recently, my neighbors on my street recently replaced their roofs using the same roofing contractor. Last year, a number of houses in my subdevelopment had their roofs replaced by another company. As a result, I asked my insurance company to recommend a contractor to inspect my roof. They sent out one of their recommended contractors, who spent about 1.5 hours and he found damage on the south side of roof. He said the roof life would have decreased by about 5 years but he did not expect any leaks. The insurance company adjuster inspected my roof last week. How confident should I be that my roof would not leak given the fact that my neighbors’ insurance companies have paid for replacing their roofs presumably on the advice of their adjusters? My roof is 15 years and is a 30 year roof. The adjuster did mention that it is wearing out at a faster rate than normal.

Richard 10:30 AM 7/26/10

Remember, even the “reputable” contractors still have some issues. Because there is so much business to be had, they are not negotiating fees or charging higher amounts.

Rich, Garrettsville 10:31 AM 7/26/10

We are considering about $5000 worth of gutter and siding work on our home.  We are in the process of getting four bids for the work.  Only one of the contractors so far is bonded.  All are local and experienced contractors.  Do we need to require that the contractor is bonded for the work done on our house?

Fran Wesley 11:28 AM 7/26/10

To Rich:  I agree with you due to the hail storms and so many roofs needing to be replaced, the contractors have plenty of work.  However, if you obtain more then one quote, from local the contractors, there is still plenty of competition in the construction industry to keep the cost of replacing your roof at a competetive cost.

As I mentioned earlier, in the program, do not only shop cost, but compare quality of materials as well.  Also shop the warranty provided by the manufacturer.  Labor is a big cost of replacing your roof, so you want the best possible material.


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