A month after being hit hard by a devastating hailstorm on June 13, now some people in northeast Calgary are being slammed again, this time by unscrupulous contractors.
Some of the fly-by-night roofers and other repair companies have rushed to the city from outside Alberta.
“These are storm chasers,” Shawna-Kay Thomas of the Better Business Bureau said.
“They come in after the storm and they try to get victims of the storm to do business with them. They often take a portion of your money and start to do the work and maybe they do not return, or they take your money and they don’t show up to do the work.”
Officials with the City of Calgary say they’ve been investigating the problem since the storm.
“We did see a rise in the number of door-to-door sales reps in the hardest hit communities,” the city’s Abdul Rafih said. “Thirty-four were unlicensed, which is a serious concern for us.”
Well-established contractors are also concerned about the high-pressure sales techniques and low-quality work.
“And once the work is done, they will be gone. So if there is an issue with your roof, your siding, even the entire exterior of your house, you will be on your own.”
City officials have some advice for people to follow to avoid being cheated.
The BBB cautions people needing repairs not to sign any “limited time offer” deals offered on the doorstep.
City officials say they’ll continue trying to protect people from the so-called storm chasers.
“On a daily basis, our officers are monitoring the areas hardest hit,” Rafih said.
“I am sure many folks are eager to get the work completed and done, but we want them to take their time and do their due diligence before making any payment or going through any unnecessary agony.”