As out-of-town contractors continue to descend on South Florida in an attempt to make a quick buck, it is refreshing to know there are still some local companies around who value the communities in which they work. These local companies are invested in the communities they serve, and sincerely want to help the residents most affected by Hurricane Irma. American Building Contractors (ABC) has been working with Homeowners, Property Managers and Board Members across the State of Florida since 2004. After hurricane Irma, ABC witnessed the devastation in Collier and Lee County, and adopted the Goodland community.
Paul Woodward, President, and Founder of ABC reached out, and asked how ABC could get involved and help. When Paul was told that the initial mitigation was starting to fail he donated 100,000 sq. ft. of tarps, his time and his crews to install them on the roofs. The residents were able to regain peace of mind while their community began the long and sometimes arduous insurance restoration process.
ABC went through the storm with Collier and Lee county residents, and understands the frustration when navigating the repair process. Here are a some helpful considerations ABC has for those in, or about to be process.
- Don’t let the anxiety of trying to get things back to normal cause you to make a hasty decision.
Because of the large number of properties and businesses affected by the hurricane, the volume of insurance claims and the upsurge in the number of permits and inspections that cities need to get through, getting your roof replaced may not happen quickly. Some contractors will promise a speedy replacement in order to secure a signature on the contract, but the reality is that much of the timeline is out of the contractor’s control.
- If a licensed roofing contractor has advised you that your roof has damage you will need to file a claim with your insurer, they are the ones who will assign an adjuster to inspect the property. It may take days, or even weeks for that adjuster to get to your home.
- Having a licensed contractor at the initial inspection to settle on the complete scope of work may prevent additional weeks for re-inspection and/or approval.
- Once a replacement is approved, materials are selected. If your home is part of an HOA the by-laws may require approval of that material which can add more time to the process.
- Although your city or county is working hard to approve and issue permits, delays could happen. No replacement can begin until the permit has been issued. Working with an experienced Florida Licensed Contractor will help ensure the proper paperwork is submitted accurately the first time.
- After the work begins, a licensed contractor is mandated by Florida State Code to participate in up to 3 inspections throughout the roof replacement project. The project is essentially placed ‘on hold’ while contractors wait for inspectors to assess each phase of the project.
As part of your contractual obligation to your insurer you need to mitigate damage. Once that happens take the time to make careful decisions and choose a contractor who can help you through the process and ensure your property is restored to its pre-storm condition.
2. Don’t be fooled into thinking a repair will resolve all the issues caused by the hurricane.
In an effort to save money, some Homeowners and Property Managers have decided repairs to their damaged roofs will suffice. To avoid extra expenses there are important things to consider.
- Broken or chipped tiles are only the surface of a problem. Even if your roof appears to be intact, there may be additional issues that you can’t see and could cause extensive problems in the future.
- Depending on the extent of the damage, your local building department, your association by-laws and/or your mortgage company may require you to get the roof replaced. If you don’t complete a roof replacement which was approved by your insurance company it may affect your ability to file future claims. They may also decide to drop you or not renew your policy if you don’t complete the approved replacement.
- Planning to sell someday? A brand new roof with a warranty will increase your property value.
Working with a licensed contractor who specializes in Insurance Restoration has many benefits. A free inspection, mitigation services, a scope of work is provided to the insurance company all which will help expedite the process of restoring your home.
If you have questions or concerns about the process, American Building Contractors Customer Support Center is available 7 days a week by phone at 239.334.6069, or contact us online.