Marketplace: Canada's consumer watchdog, we've got your back. Watch Fridays at 8 p.m., 8:30 p.m. in Newfoundland and Labrador
Hitting the Roof  Comment Icon 53 Broadcast DATE: Friday, February 4, 2011
Download Flash Player to view this content.
Hitting the Roof

Marketplace joins forces for the fourth time with contractor Mike Holmes, this time to investigate the shady world of shoddy roofers. Co-host Erica Johnson discovers that some roofers are experts at taking your money, eluding the authorities, and re-inventing their companies — but not so great when it comes to protecting your house. We set up a "bait house" — badly in need of a new roof, and equipped with hidden cameras — and watch as a surprising number of roofers fail to meet Mike Holmes' checklist of "good roofing 101." Then Marketplace chases the stories of two roofers with a trail of unhappy customers — and tracks down the roofers themselves.

Your Comments (53)

I live in a hot climate, whats your opinion between doing clay shingles or metal roofing?

There is good roofers out there, ask for address and go see work and talk to home owners. refences can be fake and ask for some from 5 or more years ago as there may be no problems with current work that might show up down the road! As for shingles all manufactors try to get out of warranties , make sure your roof is registured with company and you need copy of orginal bill.Good luck ask lots of questions good roofers should have the experience to answer all. I have 20 years exp.in roofing and make sure my customers are happy

I recently got seven different appraisal for having my house re roofed with fibreglass shingles. The prices ranged from 10,000 to 14,000. I checked out the references ( concerning the quality of workmanship) on one and found everyone was satisfied. What happen to me was when the job was finished the original estimator came in and said he had made under estimating the amount of shingles by "seven square" (This guy has been in the roofing business for over thirty year ). Which was a difference of $1,500.00. When I sounded and obvious looked surprised. He said well that's labour and material I wouldn't expect you to pay both but if you could pay for the material it would be $750.00. I said boy thats a lot of money even at $750.00 . He said if you decide you don't want to pay anything I understand as we did sign a contract and you still have a thirty year guarantee on your roof regardless.I told him I would think it over and let him know what I decided. Since then I have spoken to my lawyer who advised a contract is a contract. Now is this legitimate or another roofing scam

In reply to a comment from Joe Palango

If I hear roofers blame the venting I have this to say: how come an inexpensive roof that was installed 30 years ago on a roof with very little venting lasted 25 years and my new expensive (upgraded) roof with improved venting is giving me grief after 10 years?????

In reply to a comment from Cory Benoit

Are you kidding me?I cannot believe you are trying to sound like the good guy. I know many people who are very upset with you and your work. I also think you should proof read your letters before you send them.

Great job CBC keep up the good work, helping out the little guy. There are a lot of bad roofer out there thinking they can do it all, but when it comes down to it can't even lay a shingle never minded doing all the flashing, chimney work needed and to know that the ply wood was going to be bad on the bottom of the roof. That takes years of on the roof know how and not all companies send out a real roofer they send a salesman thats only been on roofs he has estimated, he will not know all the ins and outs of roofing. A good roofer is someone who has been doing roofing for years and has been promoted to salesman because he know everything about roofing. Roofers perform one of the most important jobs in construction. They literally put a roof over your head.

I GET STRESS ENOUGH DO YOUR RESEARCH!!!

Hello there,
It's all true. I am leading my own little roofing company in Vancouver. Everyday I think I have seen the worse when I go up and have a lock around. Customers should have no trust. Believe me, even with choosing a bigger roofing company doesn't meen to get the best quality. For everybody out there my advice: ask a roofing supplyer for their best bet; still ask the roofer for 3 or 4 references; check out if he is easy to reach by phone; be clear what you want and show that you are self-confident; ask for options and do not choose the cheapest one. "These roofers" give me also a hard time, specially when my customers think I am one off them.

Canadian Laws are not consistent. To be an Engineer, you must go through years of education and then certification process - this is the way Government of Canada and Province makes sure you are qualified to do engineering design and construction review. On the other hand, the drawings prepared by licensed engineers ends up in the hands of contractors for whom there is no requirement of certification. Some of them even do not know how to read the drawings or make simple hand sketch to communicate to the Engineer of the project site conditions.
When an engineer makes error he/she risks his/her license. The contractors are not licensed and do not face any risks similar to one of engineers. This is consistency break, or the “weakest link” in a public safety. Unfortunately, the general public might think about it only when they see collapsed building somewhere in Haiti, Chili or New Zeeland. But one day, the judgment day, the Earthquake will hit us in Canada. Many of you will have time to think about the inconsistency of our laws being trapped in the cavities of your collapsed house, if you survive…

i think it is horrible that they dont mention that roofing is a red seal trade like any other...im an apprentice in bc where RCABC, the governing body, has immensely high standards and an unrelenting school load and unmatched training...one can look at any trade and find shady work and workers. To me it seems like lazy one-sided journalism. the company i work for has done quality work for many years and has hundreds of satisfied customers....and for the ones that arent satisfied, RCABC, gaurantees and warranties any roof...PERIOD!...i hope CBC will have the integrety to show the good side of the roofing trade in the same bright light as they showed the shady side

In reply to a comment from Brian

It sounds like you have more than a roof leak - likely thermal issues as well. When there are combined sloped and flat roof areas and "filterglass" insulation is used within the flat roof ceiling cavity, it usually becomes a condensation issue - not a direct roof leak. (The transition point from flat-to-sloped roof sections, and the insulation become the critical factors. The best roof specification will not stop condensation within a ceiling cavity and often, increases the moisture damage. The common denominator is fiberglass used as insulation in these situations.) I have been involved where up to 3 roofs have been replaced in a 15 year time frame - and the water continued each time - because it is not outside water penetration, but internal water from condensation.

A roof leak in our house led to several visits from various contractors with no success. After not getting any luck, we decided to trust one of the companies that Mike Holmes recommends via his site. Their salesman came to our house, looked me in the eye and told me that if they replaced a flat roof section of our house that the leak would be fixed and guaranteed for 10 years.

They replaced the roof so we assumed the problem was solved and paid a labourer to fix the internal paint and drywall issues. Soon after the leak returned and is still there now as the roofing company tells us they guarantee their work and not to fix the leak. Naturally, I have a hard time watching Mike Holmes now since I had hoped we could trust the firms he recommends.

In reply to a comment from Rick

Sometimes you don't always get what you pay for. We went with a well known roofer in the Vancouver area (Lotsa rain)and his price was not cheap. My husband is an architect and went up on a ladder to see what they were doing and they were making a hash of it but they told him that was how it was done. He came down off the ladder and called the owner of the company who came right out and told the crew to start over and he replaced a couple of the workmen. The owner of the company did this because my architect husband works for a national engineering company and the roofer-owner did not want his reputation sullied. But how many people would have the knowledge or the professional clout to remedy this as we did. What's the answer??

It does'nt surprise me. I know this guy and i did one job for him. Me and my crew did a beautiful roof for him, I'm only a sub-contractor, he was the contractor and i took more pride in the job than he did. I went out of my way to make sure the roof was done properly. The home owner signed a contract with hm but he doesnt go on the roof he does'nt even see the finished roof, he just collects his money.
The home owner was displeased with him and said he wished he met us instead of him.

In reply to a comment from concerned roofer

To concerned roofer I have to say I don't think Mike is 200% perfect he is human. But without any kind of pictures or video or anything how is a person to know that all of the negative reviews on that site you linked to aren't crappy roofers or people who just think Mike gives them a bad name and are there for just using that site to discredit him. I'm not saying your bad at your job but you sound like someone who was offended by the story and went searching for anything bad you could find.

To Registered Roof Observer: I googled and binged that title seems meaningless all it means is you paid an organization to join and take a test. Doesn't tell me you have any special qualifications. As for roofing assocations and inspectors you are correct the what you can do besides going to court or in conjunction part was left out.

To Richard: Does your advice about ladders mean that if the roof is already in need of repair which aren't they all if the person is looking to have it replaced? Then you only go up to inspect if it's insisted or there is a specific problem you need to see in order to bid? I'm not involved in construction but I have watched Holmes on Homes and my brother is in construction and my parents have had their shingles replaced and I am almost certain they went and looked at it up close. I don't see how you could know exactly what needs doing otherwise.

To everyone who just thinks this is very one sided: Have you watched Marketplace before? It is never a yes there is a scam here but look all these people are good. The prupose of the show is to expose the scam they are NOT in any way saying everyone is bad.

dont want to get burnt-do your homework 1- check with the BBB,
2- read reviews on homestars.ca , 3- check with renomark.ca , 4- ask for a metro license or builders license , 5- ask for proof of liability insurance, 6- ask for a clearance certificate from wsib ,7- never give more than 10% deposit, 8- pay balance only when job is complete, 9- do a google search ,10- get a detailed written contract,

In reply to a comment from WALTER THOMPSON

Check out Krueger enterprises in Winnipeg. I saw them in Mike Holmes' magazine.

This being CBC Marketplace, an advertising free zone. Please CBC cover the logo that was zoomed in on a number of times with the tablet computer.

Interestingly enough, BC Workers Compensation Penalties 2010 in the field of construction
were primarily levelled against roofing companies. Is this an indicator that some form of regulation needs to be taking place in this industry when consumers and workers are being hurt by companies and contractors?

http://www2.worksafebc.com/Topics/AccidentInvestigations/Penalties-Construction.asp

Having viewed the program and read the input from other viewers I want to point out an important issue not addressed. The attic is part of the roofing system. Improper or no ventilation in the attic will not ensure a dry deck (plywood the shingles are nailed to). Moisture is the enemy of shingles and condensation in the attic is common. If your roof salesperson does not inspect or question you about your attic insulation/ventilation - look for someone else.

Please, do your due diligence and make sure you speak to a true professional before making any decisions. Find out what the proper way to install a roof is. Make sure the manufacturer's specifications are followed, research proper attic ventilation and find out why it is so important. Throwing away $3000 seems much more painful for a botched job than spending $7000 for a properly installed, warranted roof that will withstand the elements for years to come. Do it right, and put the issue to bed.

In reply to a comment from Lise Costello

Take a good look what people have to say about Mike Holmes "roofing expert". Don't just read the first few...read on and on.
http://homestars.com/companies/197644-better-contracting-services

Well let me say this first I am not that good at putting my thoughts on paper or online ok here goes my partner and I bought a house in Sept of 09 and two weeks after we closed the insurance company sent us a letter saying they were going to drop our insurance if we didn't strip and shingle the roof the previous home owners put asphalt over wood shakes the home inspection did mention we should consider re roofing the house as soon as possible we planned on doing it the following summer and also planned on redoing the rafters above the master bedroom do to the roof being flat well now its been over a yr trying to get the roofing contractors to come back and fix the roof it snows and rains in the house we had to gut the kitchen living room master bedroom and do to water getting in the house I will say this we found other major issue the previous owner did but I want my roof to stop leaking so I can start having the house put back together I think its just a flashing issue or I should say a lack of flashing u think spending over 15000. They would do it right I have even sat out side the contractor house won't even face me ok I have now vented my roofing issues

What I don't understand in this industry is how some trades do not have to be certified. I am a certified designer under the Ministry of Housing for Ontario and must design any structure according the the O.B.C. (Ontario Building Code), and the person building that structure is not (in most cases) certified. Yes, the building inspector should catch any structural issues at the framing stage, but what if this doesn't happen. You have your designers, plumbers, electrians, & building inspectors all have to have certifications. I feel that framers and roofers should be as well.

My roofer installed shingles at the wrong time of year (Too cold for the glue), and spend the new 3 winters replacing shingles due to high winds (Maybe third of the roof) We proceeded under their guidance to claim defective shingles which the manufacturer agreed to after visits photos, emails galore and eventually the company just came and completley reglued the shingles . Why it took them so long an after 3 winters Is beyond conprehension, but thats the reality. I feel I did not get screwed, but i tihnk unless you persist they will anything to avoid buying new materials. Mind you I cannot fault their service
and these guys were accredited to the building associations for quality workmanship. I would recommend them only since I am a very understanding person... and maybe they operate on razor thin margins,...

Couple of things I like add here.

Most roofers may not pay attention to masonry work on chimneys or other such work. It is a good idea to hire a small roofing consultant who can draft a scope of work, type of material and how to apply it.. All roofers have to price based on that and also have the consultant inspect the installation and the finished work. That will ensure quality work and not taking chances.

Another point about roofers (In Toronto); you can ask them about having a Metro license and a proof of that above and beyond references. In order to obtain a Metro License, a contractor is interviewed by City official who actually conduct a discussion and examination on the spot of their knowledge on the subject (discipline) they are applying for ...

Another way is to call large distributor of roofing material and say I want 3 or 4 reputable roofers...

Good Luck

Excellent video!

Finally the truth is coming out about roofing companies. As shown in the video, too many roofing companies just want the money and they really do not care about the home owners.

It was also interesting that these shoddy companies always gave a very low price (less than half of what the work should cost) and the home owner gets royally screwed in the end. I beleive that home owners can sometimes be responsible for this because many home owners often only care about getting the lowest price even after they were warned about it. Have we all heard the phrase, "You get what you pay for"?

It is high time that the ENTIRE residential roofing industry in Ontario gets a serious enema.

How this will happen is anyone's guess.

It would have been helpful to your viewers if you had pointed out that there are provincial associations for roofing contractors, and, at least in the case of British Columbia, they have extremely high standards for anyone wanting to be an RCABC member.

In reply to a comment from Get a metal roof

That's a very smart choice. My sister did the same thing and everything you've stated is exactly true.

I forgot to mention that I live in Winnipeg!

Hi my girlfriend and i bought a house in May of 2009. It rained during the summer and we noticed our spare room window had a leak above it. I pulled the evestroughing off and tried many different things to stop the leak but nothing has worked. When I pulled everything apart I noticed the edge of the roof had water damaged wood. I put on drip edge thinking it would help. I later found it helped a bit but still leaked. Later that year we decided to have our roof insulated, the company came by to do the work found that the roof vents had no holes into the attic. They were just placed on the roof with no real purpose except cosmetic. The whole thing makes me think the whole roof wasn't done right. We just recently had to replace our furnace and also have a leaky basement that is going to cost $10000 to fix! We are not sure where to start to see about fixing our roof first for as little money as possible! We are not sure where to turn!

I was disappointed with the way your episode made roofers look like their all trying to rip off customers. There is no doubt some companies are but there is actually good Roofing Companies out there. The show should'of consentrated more on the positive side of the roofing industry, and educated the public on how to spot a real professional roofing company instead of the one who is trying to rip off the customer.

what do we do about shingle manufactures that wont stand behind their products. more than one of the builders that i work for installing shingles has had problems with crc and or iko shingles with not sealing problems and cracking spliting problems and after talking to the management have received no help or compensation .one customer has a new house 2 years old that i have been back to at least six or more times to repair at my and patenes expense . i was lat ther thanksgiving day installing a special caulking to seal down the shingles together.i personally have over 40000 hours of experience and have only seen the companies stand behind their products 4 times .it makes me angry that i have never charged anyone for any repairs over the years ie wind damage brickers mortor on the shingles, siding guys cutting the leeding edge of the bottom of the valley to accomadate the siding when the big guys wont come good for their own responsibilities..Not all roofers are bad but they should need something to say they know what they are doing.iwould suggest to people to ask how much per bundle on their house and then count how many they installed to keep it fair for both.separate it how much for waste ,material, labour/bundle.my motto is if you ever have a problem with your house please call and i will come and help dont pay until the job is complete to your satisfaction please

This issue is just a fraction of the problem plaguing the entire construction industry in Canada. There is virtually no protection against bad contractors. Some of them just make their living buy exploiting the system where it is almost impossible tho get them accountable for their wrongs.
Taking your deposit and disappearing, falling behind schedule,taking shortcuts, claiming bogus expenses, play tricks with materials and subcontractors, simply making bad job - this list can go on and on. At any time they can take off and leave for another project. They can continue staying in business until their name gets publicity, then switch to a different company. It is a very long and expensive process to go after them legally. Having the best attorney on your side will drain you substantially after a few no-shows in court. And even if you win the case, the chances of collecting the money are slim, as the structure of their business and property is set up this way.
These days you can only go by a proven reference from a close friend and must have a really good understanding about the project insights. But most importantly, give no deposits.

We had our roof done after a hail storm. It really is buyer beware. Most people get into trouble trying to "cheap" out.

We chose our contractor very carefully. The contractor was listed in the Yellow Pages and listed with the BBB as well as several trade associations. An inspector/estimator came over to inspect the roof and give us a quote. We asked for about 12 references (which will not be a problem if the roofer has been around for a few years). We checked the references and actually went around to see the work as well as several jobs that were "in progress".Everyone we spoke to was very pleased, one person had trouble but said the company fixed the problem immediately.

We asked about completion dates, performance and workmanship/material guarantees etc etc. We agreed to the estimate (9800.00 for a torch-on flat roof) and before work commenced were given copies of business licenses, confirmation of workers compensation and well as their insurance policies. All of these were verified. The contract was signed and work commenced.

The job was done with a 25 year guarantee and we couldn't be happier. When the workers left they left no trace of having been there except for a perfect roof. In the end you get what you pay for. Somethings shouldn't be shopped for in the bargain basement.

Regards, Don Laird

My bad. There is a Red seal Trade called "Roofer" the rest of my comments stand! Ask for their trade "license"
Ivan the Carpenter

Although the show was interesting, it missed some important facts. First, there is no trade called "roofers" in Canada, the certified trade that roof finishes falls under is General Carpenter. The National Red Seal program governs the responsibilities of who is qualified to do what (read the nation occupational analysis for Carpenter). So if homeowners want to hire a qualified "roofer" they should be hiring a licensed Carpenter that understands the house as a system. I'm surprised Mr. Holmes did not point this out.
On another point the College of Trades in Ontario is in its infancy to say the least.
May 21 2010
"This Appointments Council will help to build a strong College of Trades that will modernize our apprenticeship training system and ensure our apprentices and skilled workers are among the world's best. Strengthening apprenticeship training is part of our government's Open Ontario plan to create jobs and opportunity for all Ontarians."
– John Milloy
Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities
This statement would inticate there is no real "College of Trades" yet, but only an Appointment Council to get it off the ground. I found the interview with the gentleman from the "College of Trades" to be a little misleading given the College is still in the creation stage.
So maybe the question to the College of Trades gentleman shouldn't have been about qualified roofers, but why the government isn't insisting on regulating the Carpentry Trade?
There is shoddy workmanship in any occupation. The first question shouldn't be asking to see references, the first question should be to see the "trade license". This does not guarantee quality, but it does guarantee the tradesperson has passed a very rigorous trade exam and probably completed a 4 to 5 year apprenticeship that includes 24 weeks at a training facility (College or Union Training Centre).
Also chimney repair should be done by a mason, another Red Seal trade, not a "roofer", you wouldn't expect a dentist to diagnose your high blood pressure, so why would you hire a "roofer" to fix a chimney?

Regards
Ivan the Carpenter
(and a very proud Tradesperson)

In reply to a comment from Get a metal roof

Sounds like your in the metal roofing bussiness

As someone who has worked on the re-shingling of a roof I can appreciate the real work and skill that it takes to be a roofer.
Get referals from those who have gone before is wise.
I want to talk about pricing. The roof in this piece should have been a $7000 job, properly done.
Because so many "roofers" out there are not skilled and hire help at low hourly rates they undercut the skilled tradesman. Those prices are the reality faced by skilled roofers. You always get what you pay for.In the case of this house a full $3000 or more dollers less than what it should have been. Do ask why it is so much less.

The real shame is that the skilled ethical tradesman looses and so does the homeowner.
Get referances and ask questions, new metals, vents? Climb a ladder and look at the plywood,at your jobs progress. You would not buy a car sight unseen, a home without inspection. Part of the problem is us.
Good roofers are out there with years of house saving experience. They may cost more than the walmart type roofers.
Buyer be wise.

I am so said Roofing depot just did not roof and it leaking i call a nothere roofer and they said and did a bad job i have a flat roof he can stick his fingers in cracks the roofs $5,100 i pay him never again

In reply to a comment from WALTER THOMPSON

Hi,
I have had extensive roofing experience and have passed on my expertise to my sons and their sons .
Sorry Mike I have to be critical .
I have bid on many roofs from the ground especially one storey buildings ! It is not appropriate to walk on a roof that is being considered for replacement , especially in the winter , as you are creating more problems to an already weakened system with your weight & feet ! If roof top inspection is required ladders should be hooked onto the roof and used to disperse your weight over a greater area !
I would never recommend to anyone putting asphalt shingles - Read the warnings on every bundle ! This is a disposable roof ten years if your lucky , one good hail storm or wind and theyre usually toast ! Our landfills are plugged with this Sh.t , which eventually ends up in the aquifers as it breaks down !
Also Mike you should use ladder stand-offs to prevent eaves trough damage. Never use air guns for installation on any roofing product ! Hand nailing is essential for proper fastening!
Cold roof systems are the only answer to all roofing deficiencies , especially in cold climates !

In reply to a comment from James

Hi James

Do you work in Vancouver? If so what company do you work for?
I am a realtor but am always in need of a good company.

Matt

In reply to a comment from Get a metal roof

Hi,
As someone who has been involved with roofing for almost forty years , I would like to point out the weaknesses of your metal roof : Condensation is one of the biggest factors and cannot be stopped no matter what you do . It runs down the underside of the metal sheets hits the screws and spirals down through the membrane and into the wood eventually rotting the wood and subsequently loosening the screws. Expansion & contraction is also a huge factor eventually elongating the screw holes & allowing water to pass .What is the first roofing material you see flying around in a hurricane ?
All roofing materials have weaknesses , but can be accomodated by the sub-roof being constructed as a cold roof system , ie , sealed before the final roof covering goes on !

I find this piece to be tremendously misleading. As a registered roof observer and red seal journeyman roofer, I find that fact that you did not mention any of the roofing associations or inspection organizations that are readily available to anyone who knows how to leaf through a phone book to be very one sided, and as misleading as the roofers you spotlighted. Why didn't Mr. Holmes mention roof inspectors? Each province has roofing associations and independent inspection firms that vet out bad roofers and try to help owners make informed decisions in regards to roofing. Sure, there are lots of crappy roofers out there, but there are also many legitimate companies who do great work. The problem is that the good roofers will charge more than the poor roofers, so homeowners tend to go for the low price and end up paying the cost in other ways. These same home owners are also typically to thrifty to pay a Registered Roof Observer to inspect their roof while its being installed. I would be more than willing to accompany Mr. Holmes in a future show on good quality roofing projects to show the other side of the industry. I think it would be only fair, given the very bad image you have just portrayed of our industry. Its a shame that some have been taken for a ride, and I have to admit that as a roof inspector, I have seen some horror shows, but its not always as you portrayed it.

In reply to a comment from Tom Santeri

Totally agree with you Tom,I was missing the positiv output as well.To me,as a roofer as well,i felt a little a shamed to call my self a roofer.
There are lots of professionals in the roofing industry delivering outstanding workmanship.

In reply to a comment from Tim

I love watching Mike Holmes on tv. I wish Mike would have done my roof, the contractor did a good job but there is one shingle that needs to be tarred down and we attemted to call him many times to no avail. He will not return our calls, so much for 25 year warrantee on our roof. Come to find out someone else sued him and won.

Asphalt is made from oil, which is a non-renewable resource that's getting more and more expensive. I replaced my roof last summer and the quote for asphalt shingles was $5,000. I know they only last about 12 years (despite the so-called warranty which isn't worth the paper it's written on), and by that time I figure with inflation it would cost at least $10,000 to replace my roof again. That means I'd pay $15,000 over 12 years, and who knows how much another 12 years after that. So, instead of wasting money on asphalt shingles I did the job properly and spent $18,000 to buy a steel roof. It looks fantastic (imitates wood shingles), adds thousands to the value of my home, lowers my air conditioning bills, offers better protection for my home and family, is much more environmentally friendly, and in the long run it's going to save me a fortune. Watching the show on CBC tonight put a big smile on my face as I'm so glad I'll never have to deal with asphalt roofing cowboys ever again.

In reply to a comment from Tim

I am in need of NEW shingles and would love to have a PRO like MIKE HOLMES to do the job.Is MIKE avaible to do roofing in WINNIPEG. Has Mike ever heard of GEM INC. out of Calgary whom market EROSHIELD shingles which are made out of used auto tires and what his thoughts are. Thanks Mike

I saw your show this evening, hoping that it could help me out in some way. In 2009 I had my roof done by a company called Orangeville renovation and roofing. They not only did my roof but some of the interior work in my home. The work was so bad I am now taking them to court. My shingles are lifting and put on crooked. I have tried to contact Mike Holmes but never gotten a reply of any kind. If your looking for another story on shady business practices feel free to call me as I can give you a ton of pictures and examples on how this happens not only in Toronto, but north of the city. We are left with no recourse when it comes to our homes, inside and out. Thanks for listening. Also i am hoping that if anyone local is reading this they will stay away from this renovation company.

This was a very good piece on the problems in the roofing industry, however, I was a little disappointed on the one sided approach. I think there should have been an additional part that actually had some positive input on some of the good work being done out there. Mike Holmes definately brought up some good points about how the owners chose their contractors the wrong way, and, relied on false information. It should also be pointed out that bringing in a reference list is not sufficient if the owner does not call the names on the list, anyone can print a list.

As a roofing contractor myself, mainly in commercial roofing, we find our firm doing some residential shingle work from time to time. That being said, all shingle work we have done has been done through word of mouth references from existing clients. So far so good.

I would recommend any potential homeowner with a roofing issue to contact friends and family, co-workers etc. prior to turning the blind eye to the yellow pages. This may save money and headaches.

Just finished watching your program on roofer and Wow!! I worked for one of the larger roofing companies in the Lower Mainland area as a labourer for two yrs. They insisted all their employees be registered for aprenticeship for their Red Seal Certification within 1 yr. My foreman had 30 yrs in the industry, my lead hand 20 yrs and on a crew of six, I was the only one with less than 10 yrs exp and with no nationally recognised certification. Although I agree that there are conmen and shysters in the trade, to suggest that it is a completely unregulated trade filled with nothing but rip-off artists is incredibly offensive and an insult to the hardworking dedicated guys I worked with and call my friends. Roofers, like mechanics, carpenters plumbers etc, can be incredibly well trained or just shysters who hung up a shingle. Anytime you are going to engage a contractor, due diligence is a must.

I found your episode a frustrating reminder of my very expensive and unfortunate experience with a bad roofer last year. I appreciate you shedding light and tips on the subject, but would have appreciated potential recourse against this injustice even more. The interview with the trades certification guy was laughable in that it appeared the government simply does not care about the consumers who rely on such certification bodies to protect us. Very disheartening...

You have to appreciate Mike Holmes and his attempt to educate homeowners!

I wish that this would have been done 5and a half years as I was miss lead when i had my shingles redone, I don't go on my roof that much except to clean some leaves out of the trough but now have notice the roof will most likely have the same issues as before because they did not repair the roof the way they said on the contract "replacing approx 388sq ft of rotten wood" the total was $7800 by a large company in my city but also found out that they sub contracted out the work. when the person from the company came to pick up my check at the end of the job, he smelt like booze because he was coming home from a baseball game. I never noticed that the roof wasn't fixed they way that they said because it was covered up with new shingles, now over the 5years they have settled down and rippled up now looking like they are 20 years old. I tried contacting them but they have not responded and also my warranty is over. I'm screwed, I started my own business recently and can not afford to redo my roof again, it stresses me out thinking that it will leak again.

 
We're turning the tables on our viewers. as Marketplace runs the scams instead of exposing them. For the first time ever, instead of grilling the bad guys, we will be confronting the "victims" with one simple question: "Why do you fall for it?"
The labels say 'organic' and 'natural' -- but are they really? Erica Johnson separates the truly green products from the 'greenwashed' -- products that look green, but really aren't -- in our top ten countdown of lousy labels.
We're looking for Canada's Worst Cellphone Bill... again!
Their business can be ferocious, but when debt collectors cross the line, can you count on the rules to protect you?
Are there special rules for gift cards sold by the banks? Erica Johnson puts Visa Gift Card to the test.
We follow up on some of our favourite stories. See what's changed, and who's been busted since we "Busted" them.
Tom Harrington investigates what some call the best kept secret in the car insurance industry: claims for diminished value.
We test 100 samples of chicken from across the country for superbugs, and Erica Johnson reveals what the results mean for you, your family, and your health.
Erica Johnson joins forces with contractor Mike Holmes to investigate the shady world of shoddy roofers.
Are you being fooled into buying expensive water purification systems? Marketplace goes undercover.
Erica Johnson investigates possible health side effects of Canada's number one birth control pill.
Notice that many of your favourite products are getting smaller and smaller, but the price is not?
Erica Johnson investigates one of the fastest growing alternative health treatments in the country: homeopathy.
Tom Harrington investigates the sneaky charges and over-billing that have been plaguing the gym industry for years.