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Subject: Problem with directors and roofing
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DavidF22
(New York)

Posts:48


09/14/2019 9:30 AM  
We have a serious problem with a recent roofing job by your Association. I would appreciate your reading the sequence of events below. I want to thank any of you in advance, who are willing to read this nightmare and provide advice. Here's the story:

1. We are in an attached townhouse complex and own the entire unit, including roofs. Association is responsible for repairing, maintaining and replacing roofs.
2. We were skipped over for a scheduled roof replacement in 2017, due to favoritism shown to then-board president to re-roof his home not scheduled for another two years. Board president selling his home at that time and can now boast to buyers he has new roof.
3. In recent months of 2019, we have been pleading with current board to perform permanent leak repairs on our home to stop recurring interior damage (for which $$$ we are responsible). Unlike what they do with other homeowners who get immediate permanent repairs per bylaws, they have been doing temporary ones that have not worked to both save money in advance of an upcoming roof replacement, but also to demonstrate the ability of some directors to discriminate against and penalize homeowners they may not like.
4. A couple weeks before roof replacement, Association sends notice to affected homeowners that they may want to have Association roofer also replace skylights, with free installation. Prices for skylights in the notice do not reflect any actual measuring or specifications, and quoted costs turn out to be well below actual.
5. We express interest in getting skylights replaced and ask for costs, brand and specifications. We hear nothing.
6. Day of roof replacement arrives. Demolition by Association's chosen roofer is a disaster, with shrubs trampled, screen punctured and gutters damaged or with parts missing. Roofer replaces one of our two skylights without our knowledge or consent. Skylight opening is rectangular, but new skylight of unknown origin or cost, is square. We object. Association director who chose and is supervising roofer says he doesn't see a problem. Roofer agrees to make things right, finishes most of roofing job and then leaves without doing anything for us. He is unreachable for days and Association refuses to help because skylights are not their problem. Meanwhile, second original skylight in our home is scratched and jolted from its housing by demolition, so it now leaks. Rectangular roof around second skylight isn't replaced, so overall roofing job isn't complete. Association wants 20-year labor warranty, but manufacturer requires ENTIRE roof to be finished.
7. We finally link up with roofer and, contrary to his contention that custom skylights were needed, we get Velux manufacturer's rep to come on site and confirm our skylights are standard-issue from Home Depot, Lowe's, local supply houses.
8. We ask roofer for formal estimate with specific information. After days' more delay, he sends it to us and we agree. We send him 50% deposit and expect he will find and install skylights in timely fashion. In the meantime, we and three other close neighbors arrange for complete gutter replacements on our homes. Per standard industry practice, gutters installed first and then skylights and roof to avoid damage to gutters.
9. Highly professional gutter company arranges installation date, but roofer appears to be dragging feet on getting skylight, so gutters will only be partly installed on our unit until skylights and remaining roof are installed. We believe contractor is dragging his feet because we reported to our board his shoddy demolition practices and damage he caused. BTW, board has promised several times over past five weeks to have damage repaired, but nothing has been done.
10. At this stage, partial gutter work will be done on our home and we are still waiting for skylights. Gutter contractor says they can be bought immediately at supply houses. Our Board is no help and has even paid the roofer in full, although a section of our roof around one skylight still hasn't been replaced.
11. We are traveling and this will distract attention from this issue for the next five weeks or so. Once we return and our home still only has the partial gutters and no finished skylights or roofing, here is what we intend to do: a) notify the board that we are finding an alternate contractor, even though it could cost us personally an additional $1500 or so for installation labor, b) recover our deposit from the Association roofer (in court, if necessary); c) notify the board and the shingle company that we do not intend to pay extra for a certified contractor to do the work, so using an uncertified one may void entire 20-year labor warranty. After we perform the work, we would then seek to get the roofer's certification and home improvement license revoked.

I have left out a lot of detail here. Our board of directors is no help, and they are the type of people that would only take advantage of any conciliatory moves on my part. We can't seek the aid of other homeowners because most of them are not outraged by this stuff and are fearful that crossing the board will cause similar things to happen to them. If someone has a better solution, I would be very grateful. Thanks!
DavidF22
(New York)

Posts:48


09/14/2019 9:31 AM  
Please excuse my typos. I meant "our" association and not "yours." Thanks.
MelissaP1
(Alabama)

Posts:8603


09/14/2019 10:02 AM  
Why are you assigning the reason for the others homeowners not to be as upset? That's just a way to play victim than advocate. Why not ask the other members are they having issues or is it just you? There is power in numbers. That is numbers with a "S". I would also consolidate your contact with the board instead of making it an everyday event. Otherwise your complaints may come across as "noise".

These are tips on how to better deal with your situation. Take a breather and a step back. Contractors are contractors. You have to deal with them. They are NOT equal by any means. You also have to take in the fact the HOA is the one that hired them. It is their responsibility to deal with them. What are their options available to do so? They can only do what they can do just like anyone else. You can't expect them to fix a contractor whom may not be up to par overnight. It takes time.

It is all about perspective. Maybe time to change yours a bit. It may change the whole game for you.

Former HOA President
MarkW18
(Florida)

Posts:121


09/14/2019 10:37 AM  
The first problem I see is your statement that you own the entire including the roofs, yet it is the responsibility of the Association to maintain, repair and/or replace the roofs. Doesn't quite work out that way. The Association should be maintaining, repairing or replacing those items that are deemed to be own in common.

There should be a project manager that you or any homeowner should be able to connect with. If the Board didn't hire one, then they're it.

Good Luck
DavidF22
(New York)

Posts:48


09/14/2019 11:18 AM  
First, many thanks for reading through my post. It sounds screwy, but we own the roofs (our insurers even insists they be on our homeowner's policies), but the bylaws assign maintenance, repair and replacement to the association. We need architectural approval to add any roof opening.

The project was originally headed up by a director who is also a contractor. However, he and three other directors have absolved themselves of any responsibility in this situation. A fifth director is extremely sympathetic and has asked in vain for the others to help. She has been marginalized by the others and is a lame duck.

My only recourse may be to threaten to void the coveted 20-year labor warranty that the association desires and pays extra for. The warranty is void if the roof is not fully completed by a manufacturer-certified contractor. So, since the association contractor (who is certified) has not finished the work, the entire roof can't yet be warranted. If I should get fed up enough to hire a non-certified contractor to finish the work, the warranty would also be voided. I don't care since the entire roof will then be new and the warranty has not proven to be a selling point in our community. However, the association touts the warranty to the community and the news of it being voided may not sit well with our neighbors. I am in discussions with the shingle manufacturer on this.
MarkW18
(Florida)

Posts:121


09/14/2019 11:41 AM  
You have issues in which an attorney may need to get involved.
DavidF22
(New York)

Posts:48


09/14/2019 12:29 PM  
Thanks for your comments, Melissa. All of them are appreciated and would make good sense if I lived in a normal community. The fact that it is so deeply dysfunctional is the reason why I felt the need to post in the first place.
CathyA3
(Ohio)

Posts:461


09/14/2019 1:09 PM  
I also think it's very odd that the association is responsible for maintaining things that are owned by individual homeowners rather than the owners in common. The most I've seen is grass mowing and the like, never anything with the structure of a home. It's practically guaranteed to cause disputes.

I often think homeowners are way too quick to jump to seeing a lawyer, but in this case you need someone who can sort out your rights and responsibilities and hopefully give the board some incentive to get on with it. I wouldn't hire my own contractor at this point, as long as you can protect the roof (a tarp?) to prevent any damage to the interior of your home. Depending on how your governing documents are worded, you'd likely be in the wrong - and you don't need to muddy the legal waters any further, or give the board a reason to dig in their heels any more than they're already dug in.
DavidF22
(New York)

Posts:48


09/14/2019 1:45 PM  
Thanks, Cathy. Also very helpful advice. The rest of our exterior is also owned by the individual homeowners. We are each responsible for maintenance of wood siding and trim, but painting is done by the Association. Yes, our arrangements cause disputes.

I’m not keen on paying an attorney a non-recoverable $500 or so for a consultation just because most of the directors are acting like jerks. But I may need to do so. Things are so toxic in our community that it’s entirely possible that one or more of them has even suggested to the contractor that he leave us hanging on the skylights as long as possible . . . as punishment for us complaining about the shoddy demolition and to show the rest of the homeowners what they are in for if they question anything. It would not be the first time a Board here has sided with an incompetent contractor against a resident. The harassment they gave to another homeowner last year over the normal expansion of her deck was despicable. Some of our directors seem to get pleasure from this.

The shingle company is a major firm that won’t wait forever for our roof to be finished and the warranty to be certified. I am trying to get an end date from the company as to when the work must be completed to prevent cancellation of the warranty. I will then share that information with the board and roofer to see if we can get things moving. If I can’t get something from the customer service reps, I’ll elevate all the way to the CEO. I’ve done this very successfully on consumer issues before. This is one point of leverage, but I am always open to other suggestions.
GenoS
(Florida)

Posts:3234


09/14/2019 7:36 PM  
Posted By MarkW18 on 09/14/2019 10:37 AM
The first problem I see is your statement that you own the entire including the roofs, yet it is the responsibility of the Association to maintain, repair and/or replace the roofs. Doesn't quite work out that way. The Association should be maintaining, repairing or replacing those items that are deemed to be own in common.

That's the same arrangement my HOA has with the homeowners. The homeowners own the entire home in fee simple. The HOA has the obligation to repair and replace roofs as needed. It's a screwy setup but it's right in the CC&Rs.

To the OP, 20-year shingles have a 20-year warranty from the shingle manufacturer in theory. In reality they will do anything and everything to avoid paying anything on that warranty. There are many factors that can void that warranty ranging from installation by a non-certified roofer to weathering a bad storm to having inappropriate repairs done.

A materials warranty on the shingles does NOT extend to workamship or labor. That warranty has to come from the roofer, not the shingle manufacturer, and 20 years is unheard of. A few years, 5 or 10 at most, is all you're likely to be get on that. That might be different up north than it is in Florida.
DavidF22
(New York)

Posts:48


09/14/2019 8:29 PM  
Hi, Geno. I’m talking about a 20-year warranty on the labor, not the materials. The shingle manufacturer warranties the contractor’s workmanship for 20 years as long as the contractor is “certified.” I’m not judging whether it’s necessary since our association makes that decision and not me. For this longer warranty (normal labor warranty in my area is 2 years), the association pays about 15% more, or about $9,000. Under normal circumstances, the contractor finishes the entire roof at once and then applies with the manufacturer to make the warranty effective. The shingle company says the warranty must be filed within 45 days after the roof’s completion or else it is voided. In our case, about 95% of the roof has been completed as of August 6. If the contractor has tried to file the warranty before he finishes our home, which is possible, he is in trouble with the shingle company and could lose his certification, as well as substantial business. If he keeps dragging his feet on our skylights and remaining roof, at some point, the shingle company may become fed up with the delay and decide to void the warranty. I am exploring this with the shingle company to see if I can use the info as leverage to get our work finished. Losing the warranty after paying an extra $9K would be an embarrassment for our association. Most of our directors are incompetent enough to let it happen. Based on some of their communications to homeowners, it is clear that neither they nor our property manager have even read the warranty.

PestY


Posts:0


09/15/2019 10:25 AM  
have a (any) contractor do a nice looking 'patch job'

sell and move on down the road

you will NEVER be happy with 'others' in charge of you and/or yours




(no charge)
MelissaP1
(Alabama)

Posts:8603


09/15/2019 1:38 PM  
20 years on the labor? Not sure if roofing companies even stay in business that long. They are like the furniture companies always having a "Going out of business" sale. So would be surprised if anyone agrees to 20 years labor. Now the materials that could see a warranty on.

It's hard to tell what the arrangement is with the HOA and hiring the contractor is. We are hearing your side of the story. Having worked with and having been a contractor myself, it can be quite complex a situation. Not sure you have the authority to contact the shingle company. You don't hold the actual contract.

Former HOA President
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