Do’s and don’ts when hiring a contractor

DENVER -- After all the hail this week, many homeowners are assessing the damage, meeting with insurance adjusters and contractors. So how do you protect yourself from scams and liability issues?

John Crawmer, a safety services supervisor with Pinnacol Assurance, has a few tips. “Be wary of somebody who just knocks on the door,” he said.

He points out it’s important to hire a reputable company that is licensed, bonded and has a certificate of insurance.

He says, if the worker falls off the roof, and the company they are working for does not have the requisite insurance programs in place, you as the homeowner could be liable for that injury, and covering the cost associated with medical, lost wages and other liabilities.

Those costs can really add up. In 2017, Pinnacol processed claims for 722 workers injured in roofing accidents. The average cost was about $20,000, but two claims were for more than $1 million. “We`ve had folks that have fallen off two-story buildings and had fatal consequences,” Crawmer said.

To protect yourself:

  • Be wary of contractors who contact you through social media
  • Make sure contractors wear proper safety gear
  • Don’t pay in full up front
  • Get more than one estimate
  • Partner with your insurance or the Colorado Roofing Association to find reputable companies
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