Information on roof coating and roof repair
Consumer Protection and the Building Commission often receive inquiries and complaints from home owners about roof restoration and roof coating for tiled roofs.
The roof is a very important part of your home. It makes up about 40 per cent of the external surface and is your first line of defence against the elements. But it is important to distinguish between roof repairs and roof coating.
If they're not fixed, roof leaks can cause expensive problems and even be dangerous if water comes into contact with electrical wiring or fittings.
Roof coating (painting) can make your roof look attractive and may increase your property's value. unfortunately, the actions and claims of a relatively small number of unscrupulous operators have adversely affected the reputation of the industry.
The more common problem areas will be dealt with here.
Marketing tactics and how to deal with them
- Many problem operators specialise in door to door sales. A seller calls at your home without an invitation, or rings to make an appointment. You should be aware that the law on door to door trading states that you must be given a 10 day cooling-off period before you pay a deposit and before any work can proceed. For more information, see Unsolicited consumer agreements.
- In the past, some groups of people have been targeted by unscrupulous traders so take extra care in dealing with door to door salespeople if you are elderly or if you live alone. We suggest that you get a second opinion from trusted friends or relatives before agreeing to any work or signing any paperwork.
- Look out for fly-by-night operators who may offer a cheap job "because they are already in the area". Often these people demand instant payment in cash and are long gone before their poor or incomplete work is noticed.
- Be very cautious about claims about the poor state of your property (e.g. "your roof needs painting" or "your tiles are in bad shape"). Always seek independent advice, preferably from a reputable tradesperson, to confirm what you have been told.
- Don't fall for aggressive marketing techniques and don't be hurried or bullied into signing anything. You can ask a door to door salesperson to leave your property and the law says they must do so.
- Check credentials and take time and care before deciding who to employ.
- Before you sign anything, read and make sure you understand all the small print (sometimes it is on the back of a work agreement or order form).
- Look very closely at attractive sounding long-term "guarantees" - ask yourself how much they would be worth if the trader should sell or go out of business. Check exactly what the small print in the guarantee does actually cover - sometimes it can be almost worthless after a short period.
- Check any written agreement before you sign to make sure you are clear what the cancellation fees would be if you should have a change of mind or a change in circumstances - sometimes they are as high as 30%.
Caution: Do not sign any contract until you understand exactly what it means and you're happy with all of the terms and conditions. Never sign a blank contract or a contract with blank spaces
If you live in the Perth metropolitan area or elsewhere in the South West Land Division of the State other than the Shires of Mukinbudin, Mt. Marshall and Narembeen, plus specified townsites within the Eastern Goldfields and Esperance regions, roof coaters need to be registered with the Building Commission. You can check if they are registered on the website.
You can check that they are registered on the Building Commission website.