Several teams descended on Calgary from elsewhere after the violent June 13 hailstorm, hoping to get rich quickly. Those in the know in our industry call them ‘storm chasers’ because that’s exactly what they do. They follow the trail of storm devastation wherever it goes. Only later do their customers discover the job’s not always over when you pay.
How We Pick Up the Pieces When the Storm Chasers are Gone
The storm chasers arrive in a city with everything they need to get started right away. Meanwhile, the local industry is trying to recover. The newcomers take advantage of the urgency of the situation to pick the cherries at exorbitant prices.
This does not only happen in the roofing, siding, and eavestroughing industry. Auto and home glazers also arrive in large numbers while the pickings are rich. Prices fall when the local industry kicks in. The storm chasers pack their bags and vans and leave town.
Some storm chasers do an excellent job, despite not understanding our weather conditions and their work may last for years. The less scrupulous ones simply ‘paper over the cracks’. The ‘quality’ of their work shows after the next storm. That’s why we say the job’s not always over when you pay.
What Options Do These Aggrieved Homeowners Have
Alberta’s Consumer Protection Act provides relief for what it considers ‘unfair consumer practices’. The Act includes coverage for ‘a service offered or provided that involves the addition to or maintenance, repair or alteration of goods or any residential dwelling’.
It says the following are unfair practices ‘if they are directed at one or more consumers or potential consumer (and) a supplier’s representation that goods or services are of a particular standard, quality, grade, style or model if they are not’.
It’s great to know Calgary homeowners enjoy this consumer protection. However, it’s unfortunately not that easy with the provider being from another town. In our experience, legal expenses can easily exceed repair costs. The storm chasers know this. For all we know this may be part of their business model.
Let’s Keep the Storm Repair Business in Our Calgary
The job’s not always over when you pay a provider from another town. Valiant Exteriors is a licenced roof, eavestrough, soffit and siding repairer. We are local, we live in Calgary and we are not preparing to move any time soon.
You can contact us at Valiant Exteriors on (403)829-1661 at any reasonable time, or leave a message right now if it suits. We are in the business for the long haul and we believe it shows in our reviews.
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