ROOFING SCAM : Better Business Bureau Warns Consumers

Usually when there’s a scam involving roofers it’s the customer that gets left holding the bag. There are a lot of people who claim to be roofers but aren’t licensed or insured and only get involved in the roofing business after a storm and go door to door offering a quick roof fix. Then weeks or months later when your supposedly new roof leaks they’re nowhere to be found.

Here’s a case of the reverse. This is something that has plagues other markets, particularly technology sales to overseas buyers. The idea is simple. Customer A wants a bid, then offers to pay if the roofer will send the difference back via prepaid card or wire transfer. If the roofing contractor agrees, money is exchanged and the roofer gets an address to a foreclosed or abandoned home while the scammer walks away with the cash. These people target smaller roofing companies who might be hungry and a bit desperate for business.

The biggest telltale signs of this scam include customers who only want to be contacted by email or text and require electronic funds rather than a check.