Roofing Contractor Scams

California Laws Protect Homeowners and Target Roofing Contractor Scams

The California Building Code applies to every roofing contractor and roofing work performed in the state, including Santa Clara and San Mateo counties. The Code is comprised of the regulations that promote safe roofing practices. Beyond spelling out best practices, roofing contractors must follow the Codes. Specifically, the Code mandates that:

  • A roof contractor hold a valid license
  • A roofing contractor must get a permit in cities that require one
  • The contractor must show proof of liability and Worker’s Compensation insurance

California Laws Protect HomeownersThe Code applies to anyone performing roofing work valued at over $300.00, including materials and labor. The Code exists to protect homeowners from unscrupulous roofing contractors who either don’t perform the work at all or do a shoddy job. However, it’s the homeowner’s job to do everything possible to ensure their roofing contractor is up to par.

Not doing so puts you at a huge financial risk since most unlicensed roofers don’t carry insurance. If you purposely or inadvertently hire an unlicensed contractor, you become his legal employer. You could be held liable for medical and legal costs if a worker is injured or an accident occurs. Roofing is a dangerous job, especially when performed by unlicensed roofers. Hiring an unlicensed roofer comes with the potential for a devastating financial loss.

Using the Code to protect yourself is easy to do if you insist on a few things from your roofing contractor.

  • A Contractors State License Number. A “C-39” license is the CA roofing classification. A general contractor license is a “B” designation. Verify that the license is valid AND in good standing with the State License Board online or by calling 800-321-2752.
  • Proof (Certificates of Insurance) of liability and Worker’s Compensation prior to beginning any work.
  • A copy of any city-required permit. Insist the roofing contractor pulls the permit. Never do it yourself. And always verify with the city that the permit has been closed to avoid problems selling the house down the road.

Though the Code offers peace of mind that you’re hiring a reputable roofing company, there are other steps you can take. Ask the roofing contractor for a list of former customers in your area. Finally, insist on making a final payment only after proof is provided for releasing material or labor liens. This stops vendors from coming after you should the roofer not pay his bills. Signature Roofing, Inc. never files a lien against your property, but it’s common for roofers to do so.

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