Friday, September 02, 2011

The saga of our roof or Why you should never hire Ideal Development Concepts.

I was reading Megan's blog today and could totally commiserate with her about her recent customer service woes. I then realized that I never really posted anything about it here, and now that the whole thing is settled, I thought I'd fill everyone in about how the whole thing went down.

Back in June, a strong thunderstorm knocked down a tree in our yard such that it side-swiped our roof and knocked off our gutter. Since we were all home at the time, we were thankful it wasn't a more direct hit and that there wasn't more damage.
This is what the damage looked like. Not too bad, but just bad enough that we were told that essentially the entire front half of our roof would need to be replaced. Mostly because there would be almost no way that they would be able to match the exact shade of green in our current shingles. Our insurance company quickly sent out an adjuster and approved the repair. They suggested a company called Ideal Development Concepts that they said they had worked with before, and told us we should use them. It was not a local company, but that was fine with us.
At first, things seemed like things were going ok. The guy we initially talked to seemed to be a good guy and understood what we needed. Then it quickly went down hill. He never returned phone calls until Jeff had called several times. It took him several weeks to finally send someone out to take a look at what needed to be done, in spite of him promising that he'd be out "right away". It took several more weeks for them to actually come out and do the work, again after telling us that they'd be out tomorrow, or the next day, or whatever. It took lots of harassing to actually get them to do it. The first day they showed up was to do some carpentry to fix the front of our roof where some wood had been torn off. They showed up, then left 20 minutes later, saying they'd be "right back," but that they needed to go get some nails. Who shows up to a carpentry job without nails??  They never even came back that day. Eventually they fixed the carpentry stuff, but it took another long while before they came back to fix the shingles. When they finally did come, (we were on vacation), our neighbor actually felt compelled to photograph them because they were so frequently not working.

They also left a large pallet of shingles on our lawn. In July. In South Carolina. For over a week. You can imagine how that ended - with a big patch of brown grass. We returned home from vacation to this:
Yes, in fact that is a different color shingle. That they stopped installing about 2/3 the way up our roof. The lighting of this photograph makes the two colors look more similar than they are, I think, but especially in the late afternoon it looked horrible. That was how they left it. There was no plan to finish, in spite of what we'd talked about with the contractor. Another neighbor also happened to be getting a new roof right around this time, so Jeff asked the boss man over there to come and take a look. Besides the obvious problem of having two totally different colors of shingle on our roof, he also told us that they had done a really, really bad job. The shingles weren't installed correctly, and the ones that were installed in the right way had been poorly installed. They were super crooked, and the siding they'd had to replace was also all wrinkled. On top of everything, they'd used a crappy shingle and left TONS of nails all over our driveway and in our yard. When we finally got back in touch with our initial contact, it became clear that he had hired some sort of sub-contractor to do the job, and acted like it wasn't his fault that they did such shoddy work. He tried to tell us they could fix the work, but by then we'd had enough of that company. (Jeff was so mad about it that he signed up for Angie's list just so he could leave a bad review.)

Thankfully, our insurance company sent out another adjuster who looked at everything and agreed that it all had to be done again. This time we hired a local guy who managed to get it all done a few weeks after we'd hired him. He also promptly returned calls and made sure that our lawn wasn't messed up. The workmen showed up promptly and cleaned up after themselves.  And finally, two months after this all started, we have our nice roof back: (Which in this picture doesn't even look green, but it is. But now the whole thing is the same green.)


So much nicer. We are thankful for USAA, our insurance company, who did a pretty good job (except in their first recommendation) of getting this taken care of, and our new roofing company who finally did a good job! The adventures of home ownership....

5 comments:

Fred said...

Aubrey, You should give credit to the workman that did the good job:) Looks like a really nice home.

Megan said...

I *almost* signed up for Angie's List so I could leave a bad review there as well. As it is, I'm pretty much resigned to not getting the $75 back. If it were more than that, though, watch out!

Your story made my heart rate increase, but the roof looks awesome now. Sorry it was such a hassle!

Santo Caridine said...

Alas, we can't tell good repairmen from bad ones at the onset. But why didn't you drop those guys after they didn't answer your initial calls? The local guy who fixed that ugly patch on your roof is for keeps!

Max Boughner said...

Who chose the color of the roof? Was it the roofer? That color is one of the favorite colors of my girlfriend! It's blue green, right? I'll share this to her sometime. She'll definitely take this as an inspiration for our future house.

Joann Winton said...

I must say, that was not a very good service. You must’ve been very frustrated and mad to see your roof that way. Good thing the insurance company approved to have it redone again. It is really important to be careful when choosing a roofing company. You must check their background experience to ensure their credibility. Anyway,your new roof looks great now!