Last year on March 3rd, 2020 a powerful tornado devastated downtown Nashville. The Nashville Tornado was a tough reminder of the sheer power of Mother Nature. The resulting property damage was unimaginable. Roofs were torn from buildings and debris left scattered across Music City.
Why is the Nashville tornado relevant to this blog?
Whenever a large storm hits an area, a certain type of roofing company, known as “Storm Chasers” will appear. The damage from the tornados on March 2-3 2020 caused a total damage of $1.606 billion. With the desperate need for recovery from such a disaster, a large business opportunity is created for Storm Chasers.
Who Are Storm Chasers
Storm Chasers are Roofing contractors who use special equipment and technology to locate large storms that have recently affected an area. Any severe storm that can damage a home is ideal. This can range from Hail storms to Tornados. Once an area is located, the Storm Chasers move in.
Why They’re Bad
Since their business is to find an area hit by a storm, they quickly move in and do very fast work, taking advantage of insurance policies to cut costs. Consequently, doing very fast work with cheap materials leads to undesirable results. They use the cheapest materials and practices to quickly get a job done, leaving an unreliable, short term roof. A properly built roof can easily last a quarter century or longer, whereas a cheap roof thrown up by a Storm Chaser cannot guarantee a lifespan of even one decade.
Furthermore, since a Storm Chaser moves in, slaps on a roof and leaves, a homeowner will be unable to contact the roofing contractor should there be any issues with their cheaply replaced roof. The Storm Chaser will be long gone.
Storm Chasers also know the ins and outs of home insurance. They boast doing the job at almost no cost to the homeowner, advising them to take advantage of their home insurance policies, as well as offering to cover the deductible. Since insurance will cover the roof, (theoretically) Storm Chasers can entice a homeowner with the offer of replacing their entire roof, for FREE.
How to Spot a Storm Chaser
In order to avoid the easy trap of a too-good-to-be-true deal from a Storm Chaser, it’s always imperative to do your research. Conduct your own company audit using Google, Angie’s List, BBB, Yelp, and other company review websites. Browsing the reviews can give you a good idea of how this company carries themselves. It is worth looking into where they’re located, as well as their service areas. (Since a Storm Chasers service area is essentially anywhere.) You can also check your local and state agencies to find out if your prospected contractor is licensed and qualified.
Stick to a local, trusted roofing contractor in your area. Reputable companies will provide any documentation and identification if requested.