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Can You “Harvest” Roof Shingles?


Powerful storms can do some serious damage to your home. That’s why you carry homeowners insurance. You may pay premiums for years without making a claim, but when the time comes, you have the peace of mind of knowing that you’ll be made whole. Unfortunately, not every insurance company holds up their end of the deal. We’ve run into plenty of situations where insurance companies give homeowners the runaround, trying every which way to cheat them out of a legitimate claim. That’s not the kind of behavior we would expect from any business, so when a homeowner tells us they’re getting that kind of treatment, we try to help. Sometimes, though, the insurance company comes up with some truly unusual ways of trying to skimp on their settlement. This is one of those stories.

It Started With Irma

Hurricane Irma hit the Southeast hard. Even here in Georgia, some of the winds were strong enough to rip shingles right off of people’s roofs. That’s what happened in Patricia and John Daniel’s neighborhood. After the storm, nearly one third of the houses in their neighborhood needed their roofs completely replaced. Although the storm may not have lifted off entire roofs, the winds were strong enough to flip up quite a few of the shingles. And when shingles are old and brittle, a little bending like that can damage the shingle to the point that it needs to be replaced.

Insurance Troubles

The first hint of the problems to come came right after the storm. The Daniels, like many of their neighbors, filed a claim with their insurance company, The Hartford, to fix their roof. But The Hartford was slow to take action. After ten days and no movement from The Hartford, the Daniels took matters into their own hands and used the same roofer as their neighbors to make emergency repairs. That was definitely the right move since allowing damaged shingles to go unrepaired exposes your roof to much more severe damage.

However, when the Daniels learned of the extent of the damage to their neighbors’ roofs, and the damage done to shingles that were flipped up by the wind, they asked The Hartford to reopen their claim. Again, The Hartford balked. After long email chains, seemingly endless phone calls, and many wasted hours, The Hartford offered a solution.

A Strange Solution

The Hartford offered the Daniels a solution to their roofing woes, but it was not what they expected. Instead of just fixing the Daniels’ roof, The Hartford wanted to harvest old shingles from the back of their roof and move them to the front of the roof where there was more visible damage. The Daniels were rightfully surprised. After all of their negotiations, the solution offered by their insurance company seemed like no solution at all.

That’s when they called TrustDALE.

We brought in Tim Varga, a public adjuster. He represents insurance policyholders in their claims against insurance companies. His job is to help the insured navigate the language of their policy as well as to ensure a fair and equitable valuation of the damage they are claiming.

Due to legal constraints, we aren’t allowed to know the details of what went on next. That’s between the Daniels and The Hartford. But what we do know is that with the help of the TrustDALE team and Tim Varga, the Daniels got a new roof and, finally, some peace of mind.

If you have a problem with a business or company that isn’t treating you right, contact us. We work to protect consumers and hold companies to the basic standard of treating their customers fairly. Of course, if you want to avoid any problems, you can use TrustDALE certified companies, who have already agreed to stand by Dale’s trademark Make-it-Right Guarantee™.