Seeking Help with Getting Money Back from Roofing Contractor

Updated on March 25, 2011
L.L. asks from Saint Louis, MO
8 answers

Hello ladies, I'm hoping that someone can help me regarding a problem that I have ran into. I hired a roofer back in June to replace my roof. I gave him a check for half of the money and the other half would be due after job was finished. Well he messed around for a while and kept putting us off. Finally he told us that because he's having a hard time "in the roofing business" right now, he's decided to get out of it, there for unable to complete our roof. By that point I said that was fine (I was aggravated with him by that point) and please refund my money. He says that the refund was not a problem but he does not have the money right now. I've been very nice and understanding through this entire thing. Well now it's been 3 months since we gave him the check and there is just one excuse after another as to why he does not have it. I've already hired another roofer and had the job finished now. Does anyone have any idea on how to procede from here? I'm afraid i'm going to get screwed in the end. I just recently (today)put in a complaint on him to Jay Nixon on the computer. Has anyone ever had any experience in the field? I don't have money to hire a lawyer, and I'm not even sure if If i need one or not. If anyone has any ideas on this, please let me know!

What can I do next?

  • Add yourAnswer own comment
  • Ask your own question Add Question
  • Join the Mamapedia community Mamapedia
  • as inappropriate
  • this with your friends

More Answers



answers from St. Louis on


I've been in a situation like this and know how frustrating it is. Unfortunately, depending on the amount - going to court may be a bigger hassle than it is worth. Is this man still running his roofing business? If he is I would contact him and let him know that if he does not refund your money in 1 weeks time you will be contacting the BBB and any other avenues you can find to put a halt to his business. I would also just be a constant thorn in his side (calling, e-mail, mail) to get your money back. Good luck, but you may just have to write this one off.




answers from St. Louis on

What about the news? Like Contact 2 or something of that sort. It is a good warning to other people and also lets him know that you are serious. How did you find this person? Did you get references? Or was it a friend of a friend?

Good luck L.!!!!!!


answers from St. Louis on

If the amount is low enough you can take him to small claims court. In small claims no lawyers are involved. Last time I looked the max claim was $5,000.



answers from St. Louis on

Hi L.,

Start by calling the local office of the Better Business Bureau. A lot of times they can help with things like this. It will also let you know if there are more people out there with the same issues.

You might also consider telling him by certified mail that if he hasn't refunded your money by a certain date that you will be filing a claim in small claims court.

Anyone should always check any contractor they are planning to use with the Better Business Bureau. They keep track of complaints and issues that are filed with them for quite a long time.

Good Luck!




answers from St. Louis on

Small claims court may be your only option, but you will likely need to produce some sort of proof that the money was exchanged based on an agreement that was not fulfilled. Verbal agreements don't tend to fair well in court. If you have some proof that he was in the roofing business, such as a brochure or business card or names of people he workd for, and have pictures and/or paperwork showing that you did have the work done by another roofer, you may be able to satisfy the judge that the check was exchanged with a reasonable verbal agreement.

If I were you, I would also contact the public defenders office or the police department and at least attempt to report the man. It seems reasonalbe to me that, if you have been defrauded, he can be charged with fraud. If the prosecutor's office is willing to file criminal charges, you won't need to hire your own lawyer and you can request that, if the defendant is found guilty, paying restoration and court costs be part of his sentence. This has been done in the past.

A problem many of us run into in this life stems from our willingness to sign a check without first having a signed contract. We recently hired a roofer and happily paid him w/o a contract, but only because I went to grade school with his brother and my husband is a union carpenter and considers him one of the most trustworthy roofers in the business. He has worked with him and referred many people to him over the years. But, we bought the materials ourselves and paid him when the job was complete, with a bonus for his extra efforts to get the job done before Ike hit. The only reason a roofer gets half up front is to purchase the materials necessary for the job. This protects the roofer from suffering losses when clients fail to pay. Know that, in the future, you can get an estimate, puchase the materials yourself, and pay for the labor as the work is completed.

I have taken losses because I had not learned yet that I can write down agreements and ask for a signature. Anyone who is not willing to sign their name under their own promises does not get my money until the job is complete. Over the years I have learned to set clear boundaries, time limits, etc., and always get a signed contract. But I lost thousands of dollars learning that lesson. I consider it tuition.



answers from Atlanta on

Make sure you report him to the BBB to take him down. He may keep on creating more victims by taking front end checks from homeowners. The chance of your getting your money back is slim to none. I know because I worked for a roofing company that ending up doing the same thing to people so I left. People don't understand the power of reporting to the BBB. Also make sure you put multiple reviews on google about this company to hope he does not create more victims. Good luck!



answers from St. Louis on

i would contact channel 2. they are very thorough about stuff like that. they would be able to help you go through the right channels if they cant help



answers from St. Louis on

Small claims court, you don't need a lawyer

For Updates and Special Promotions
Follow Us

Related Questions

Related Searches