Sunday, January 18, 2009

State Farm Presents CSI -- Roofing

In the latest roofing news, State Farm has presented me with a list of seven “independent” engineers to choose from to examine my roof for evidence of wind damage. After checking out their Web sites, I don’t think there’s an independent one in the group.

It appears to me that most, if not all, of these companies are “forensic” engineering firms. In other words, they are the CSI of roofing. Something tells me David Caruso isn’t being summoned to my house to conclude that the roof died of natural causes. Instead, he will be peering into his microscope, looking for the smoking gun of racking.

One of the companies says this on its Web site: “In the realm of asphalt shingles, habits of the installer are perhaps the single greatest asset or shortcoming to a shingle roof’s wind resistance. Therefore, we place great emphasis on how the roofing contractor performed his work from the early stages of preparation through the finished roof installation with respect to published manufacturer and code requirements.”

Does this sound like an independent company or one that is predisposed to blame installers instead of 80 mph winds?

Another company brags of its “litigation support.” Whose litigation are they supporting? Mine? I don’t think so.

By the way, forensic engineers don’t come cheap. I'm told they cost $500 to $700. I'd rather that money be applied to my roof. Unfortunately, as it turns out, my premiums cover roof autopsies, not roof repairs.

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