Replacement Cost Value vs Actual Cash Value

Many, many of our clients have been greatly confused by the insurance documents they get when filing a claim for storm damage on their property, so we’re responding to the many questions we get about this with an article explaining the difference between these 2 policy types.

What Happens When You File A Claim?

When you call your insurance company’s claims department and tell them you had a hail storm, they will log a claim and schedule an adjuster to come visit your property. By the way, this is exactly why you don’t ever want to call your claims department after a storm. You should either call a roofing contractor and request an inspection, or you should call your insurance agent and ask for a recommended roofing contractor. Unless we get a monster, granddaddy-of-them-all kind of storm like we had in July last year, don’t call your claims department until after a roof inspection so you know if you really have damage or not.

When your adjuster comes out, he will assign a value to the repairs that are necessary to be done. This is your claim amount. Then he will depreciate that amount based on the age (and some other factors) of the items damaged. Most of the time, it’s the roof that gets depreciation applied, but other items can have it, too. The depreciation amount gets deducted from the claim amount. After that, they subtract out your deductible, too. This is your share of the claim, and by law, it is the responsibility of the homeowner to pay this. The roofer cannot legally offer to pay all or any part of it.

After the depreciation and deductible have been subtracted from the claim amount, what’s left is called the Actual Cash Value. This is the amount that the roof is actually worth right now, and that is the amount of the check you will receive from the insurance company. At first!

The Reason This Is Confusing…

Most insurance policies will cover Replacement Cost Value. That means that they are not going to give you what your roof is actually worth right now, they are going to pay you to replace your roof at today’s costs. It kind of freaks people out, though, when they get a check from the insurance company for – say – $4000 and they have a quote from a roofer for $9000. They think, “How in the world am I going to get my roof done? I can’t come up with the extra money!”

Even though the adjuster does his best to explain this to a homeowner, oftentimes the homeowner doesn’t understand how the process works. Many times, the homeowner is not home when the adjuster comes out so all they know about the claim is the check amount they receive in the mail.

Replacement Cost Value (RCV) means that you will get all the money that it costs to replace your roof – minus your deductible. Actual Cash Value (ACV) is the amount that your current roof is actually worth, today. Here’s where it can get really confusing. Even though you may have an RCV policy, when you look at your claim amount, it may show a dollar amount for Actual Cash Value. Yikes! Does that mean that’s all the money you’ll get? It may or it may not. That’s why it’s best to ask your agent about your policy coverage or ask a roofer to look at your claim document. Either can explain if you’ll be getting more money from the claim or not.

If you have an RCV policy, like most people do, you will get another check after the repair work is complete. At that point, the insurance company will send you the depreciation money. If you have an ACV policy, it’s basically WYSIWYG (pronounced wizzy-wig). That means What You See Is What You Get. The amount of money on your check is all the money you’ll get to replace your roof.

Think of it this way:

If you have a 2003 Honda Accord and it gets totaled with hail damage, your insurance company will not give you the money to go buy a 2017 Honda Accord. They are going to pay you what your 2003 Honda Accord is actually worth on the day it was totaled, and no more. That’s Actual Cash Value. If they paid you to buy a 2017 Honda Accord, that’s like a Replacement Cost Value policy for your home.

The Reason This Matters To You And People You Know…

If there is a hailstorm in the area, I commonly see people make a couple of major mistakes.

  1. They immediately call their claims department asking the insurance company to do an “inspection” for damage. Remember, that’s not what the adjuster’s job is. He’s there to assign a value to damage for the claim you have submitted.

  2. They don’t check to see what type of policy they have before calling in the claim.

I strongly recommend that before you call in a claim, call your insurance agent and ask what type of policy you have. I would go one step further… Before there’s even a hailstorm, call your agent and ask that question. If you find out you have an ACV policy, you may ask about switching to an RCV policy so that if you do sustain storm damage, you don’t have to come up with a huge amount of money out-of-pocket for the repairs.

If you are on ACV, there may be a reason, such as having out-dated, obsolete shingles, or other reasons, however, if you have a storm in your area, you will be greatly benefited by having an RCV policy and not an ACV policy. Talk to your insurance agent and ask these questions. Hopefully I haven’t made this clear as mud.

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Zach Brown, Project Manager for Homestead Roofing

Zach Brown, Project Manager for Homestead Roofing

That headline almost makes it sound like we have the pitter-patter of new little feet running around the Homestead Roofing office. Well, his feet aren’t that little, but we do have a relatively new employee here: Zach Brown.

Zach joined Homestead Roofing on September 27 as a project manager. Even though we’re just now getting around to introducing him online, we did to a feature on him in our hard-copy newsletter in November. His initial responsibilities were to help us manage through the aftermath of the huge hailstorm which hit the area on July 28. He did this by taking on the project tasks that need to be done after the job is sold and the contract is written with the homeowner. That means that he was interacting with the suppliers, the subcontractors, and the homeowners.

Now, however, Zach is a fully-vetted and experienced project manager. He got thrown into the fire after that huge hailstorm and now knows how to manage and coordinate storm repair projects which include roofs, gutters, HVAC systems, windows, screens, painting, stucco, and other items. Out of all of our project managers, Zach now has more experience with all the non-roof related damage repairs. You may have already met Zach, or you may get to meet him in the future.

I appreciate Zach’s zeal for jumping right in and working on projects. He has shown that he is not timid about his assignments and isn’t afraid to make decisions and get things done. This has freed me up to be able to keep our schedule running smoothly. Zach has been an asset already.

Zach has an interesting background. Right out of high school, he spent two years “roughing it” on the road across America but also overseas. He even spent time in Uganda! He really loves the outdoors and especially playing in the dirt. When I met him, he owned a business called Brown’s Greens and his forte was installing vegetable gardens for homeowners. He would build raised beds and prep the soil and, if the homeowner wanted him to, he would even plant the garden plants. This is his first love. Oops! I should qualify that statement especially since Zach engaged to Brittany, with a wedding imminently approaching on May 6th! He and Brittany are also part of a band called Smith House which plays folk music up and down the Colorado Front Range. Zach’s instrument of choice for his band is the bouzouki. How many of you know what a bouzouki is? It’s like a long-necked mandolin.

All of us here at Homestead Roofing welcome and appreciate Zach as a new team member!

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Catching up with Steve Muzzipapa is challenging enough, but keeping up with him is even tougher. He’s a guy that gets more done in one day than most people get done in a week! He has seemingly unending supplies of energy and a ton of passion about what he does. A Colorado Springs resident for the past 46 years, in 1988 Steve began transforming an empty lot, a junkyard and an alfalfa field on 19th Street into a botanical garden and nursery. In 2004 he began another transformation when he made The Secret Garden one of the area’s top wedding venues. Just recently, in the aftermath of the heavy and destructive snow in early April, I met Steve at the Garden for a blog interview for our website, and learned some really interesting things about him and his business.

The property contains the botanical garden which is full of winding paths, greenery, beautiful 13 year old geranium plants, a Parisian Garden, vine covered arbors, fountains, water features, ponds, a wedding chapel with a bell tower, and a 117 year old guest house, all of which are available for rental and use for wedding events. One of the more novel attractions at the Garden is the Wine Garden. I say it’s novel because it’s actually a vineyard! The entire patio is covered with a grape vine canopy that produces real grapes in season and has string lights for nighttime events, all with Italian music playing for background ambiance.

As soon as you meet Steve the thing that is most striking (besides his boundless energy), is his love of what he does: providing an extraordinarily beautiful venue for families to celebrate the most important event of their lives. As he told me, his vision is to just keep making the Garden “better and better.”

Another noticeable thing about Steve is his impeccable professionalism. This guy knows the wedding industry and knows how to take care of a bride and groom and their families at his full-service venue. As a landscape designer, he has put so much sweat equity into creating The Secret Garden, and it immediately shows when you see it all. Even on this spring day in April, when so many trees were damaged from the snow load, the Garden still stood out in the city as a little oasis. My favorite spot was the Parisian Garden, and here Steve even had the creative foresight to build a layered platform with an iron-columned gazebo on it so that when the bride & groom stand there for the wedding, it represents a layered cake with a bride & groom at the top.

The main property is intentionally designed with lots of paths that wind through the trees and shrubs and under the arbors so that it will hold his clients’ interest and encourage them to explore. This also allows for creativity in the wedding ceremony because the attendants and the bride and groom have numerous options for their entrances and for the wedding party recessional. One of the most popular spots for the bridal entrance and for the wedding photos is the grape-covered colonnade just inside the entrance to the property.

The Secret Garden in full bloom in wedding season

All of the natural, organic environment is refreshingly unique about the Garden as a wedding venue, which are typically static rooms that never change. Every day at the Garden brings a new look, so effectively no two weddings ever look the same. Each of the outdoor wedding areas – the main Garden, the wine garden, and the Parisian Garden, are all hedged with natural plants so you don’t have onlookers watching your wedding. You have a secluded, private ceremony in your very own Secret Garden.

The guest house is available for out-of-town wedding guests and has 2 bedrooms and an updated, modern bathroom. If you have friends or family coming into town, and they need a place to stay, the guest house isn’t exclusively for wedding guests. Anyone can reserve this well-maintained cottage originally built in 1900 and equipped with some vintage appliances like the antique heater (just for show) and the refrigerator from the 1940s.

Nearly every person who works in the wedding industry has a story about some crazy couple, family, or event. Steve’s most unusual wedding request was when the bride & groom told him that they wanted to have a pig be the ring-bearer. As Steve said, “When they’re scared, pigs make a horrendous screaming noise!” He had no clue who was screaming so alarmingly and ran over to find a panicked pig. He’s also been asked to officiate a wedding on a couple of occassions, but he readily admits that is not one of his career ambitions or talents so he has never accepted one of those invitations.

Steve’s Wedding Planning Tip

Steve has seen numerous flubs in wedding plans, but one major tip he has is that couples should choose the venue before choosing the date. So often a couple chooses a date, and if they happen to choose a popular date, such as July, 17th, 2017 (7/17/17), the more popular wedding venues may have been booked months in advance and the couple may not have a nice place to host the wedding ceremony.

Homestead Roofing worked for Steve in 2014, re-roofing his home, so I’ve had 3 years to get to know him. If you know of someone who has an upcoming wedding, and they haven’t yet chosen a venue I can definitely recommend you check out The Secret Garden and spend time discussing your plans with Steve Muzzipapa. To get more information about The Secret Garden, go to the website, coloradosecretgarden.com or call him at 719-964-0541.

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Remember recently we began a series entitled, 7 Questions To Ask Your Roofer? Well, really, it should more accurately be entitled, “7 Questions To Ask The Roofer You’re Considering Hiring,” or even better, “7 Questions To Ask The Roofer Who Is Knocking On Your Door.”

In 2016, there were several huge hailstorms in El Paso County. Homeowners all over the area had windows smashed and siding demolished, not to mention the damage that occurred to their roofs. Literally, within 1 hour of the storm, the door-to-door guys were out canvassing those areas. Current estimates are that only about 1/3 of the damaged roofs in El Paso County have been replaced, so be prepared for the door-to-door guys to start hitting your neighborhood again in April. 

When your friends and family and neighbors are getting bombarded by the door-knockers, tell them to remember this little saying, “Not every roofer who knocks on your door will rip you off, but every roofer that will rip you off will knock on your door.”

Here’s Question #3 You Should Ask The Roofer You’re Thinking About Hiring

Question #3: What Is Your El Paso County Roofing Contractor License Number?

Every county that requires a roofer to be licensed should issue a license with a number on it. The reason you should ask that is to make sure that the roofer who wants to be hired by you is, in fact, allowed to pull permits in your county. Last fall, one of the local news stations caught up with a local “roofing contractor” and confronted him about his license. They had gotten a tip that he was working without a license, so they set him up. As he was climbing off a roof, they came out of the house and began to ask him questions. When they asked him about his license, he said he had one in his truck, but when he presented it to them, the camera zoomed in and the expiration date could be clearly seen. It had been expired for almost 2 years.

If a roofing contractor tells you that you need to pull the permit for your re-roof, or that no permit is needed, or you see that a different contractor’s name is on your permit, these are all “red-flags” that your contractor doesn’t have a license in your county and he shouldn’t be running a roofing contractor business here. Most of all, it indicates that you should never hire one of these scammers to do your roof. Buyer beware! You can see the video from the news station on our blog at http://www.homesteadroofingcolorado.com/beware-of-recent-local-roofing-scams/

So ask for the contractor’s license number and check with Pikes Peak Regional Building Department at 719-327-2880 to see when it expires.

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Remember recently we began a series entitled, 7 Questions To Ask Your Roofer? Well, really, it should more accurately be entitled, “7 Questions To Ask The Roofer You’re Considering Hiring,” or even better, “7 Questions To Ask The Roofer Who Is Knocking On Your Door.”

In 2016, there were several huge hailstorms in El Paso County. Homeowners all over the area had windows smashed and siding demolished, not to mention the damage that occurred to their roofs. Literally, within 1 hour of the storm, the door-to-door guys were out canvassing those areas. Current estimates are that only about 1/3 of the damaged roofs in El Paso County have been replaced, so be prepared for the door-to-door guys to start hitting your neighborhood again in April. 

When your friends and family and neighbors are getting bombarded by the door-knockers, tell them to remember this little saying, “Not every roofer who knocks on your door will rip you off, but every roofer that will rip you off will knock on your door.”

Here’s Question #2 You Should Ask The Roofer You’re Thinking About Hiring

Question #2: Do I have to sign anything?

This relates to what I call the Dirty Little Secrets of the Roofing Industry. Many of the door-knockers will ask you if you would like to have a “free” roof inspection. If you suspect you have damage, you might tell him to do the inspection. After all, it’s “free” right? Then what he does is whips out a form and asks you to sign it. Many homeowners think, at this point, that they are signing a consent form, or a liability waiver. They never suspect that they are actually signing a contract with the roofer. This contract says that IF he finds damage on your roof, or IF you file a claim, or IF the claim is accepted, you HAVE to use his roofing company to complete the work. Remember, this is all even before he has inspected the roof. One lady I know who had this happen to her tried later to back out of the contract because she realized what kind of a scan she had gotten into. Then the roofer began to threaten her with lawsuits and fines.

If you have to sign anything even before the roofer gets on the roof, tell him, “No thank you,” then grab your phone and text all your neighbors to be on the watch for this guy and others like him.

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Why Homestead Roofing Is Relentless About Hiring A Mechanical Contractor

First, what is HVAC? That’s the system in your house or business for your Heating, Ventilation, & Air Conditioning. Most people don’t think about their HVAC system when it comes to a roof repair or replacement due to a hail storm, however, HVAC systems are included in almost every hail claim we work on.

This vent cap was significantly damaged by the hail on 7/28/16.

How Is Hail Damaging My HVAC System?

Nearly every home has a furnace and/or water heater that vents through the roof. At the top of that pipe is a rain cap that prevents rain and snow from going down that 5” wide pipe (or 4”, 6” or 8”, depending on the system). That cap gets pretty beat up during some hail storms and that’s why the adjuster puts that in your claim for a hail damaged roof. Since this cap is damaged by hail, that is covered by your insurance policy (in most cases), so he is adding it to the claim to be replaced.

Why Hire A Mechanical Contractor?

In 2011 or 2012, a roofing laborer was asked by the roofing contractor to replace the vent cap as part of the roofing work. The laborer put the cap on incorrectly by pushing the cap all the way down onto the top of the pipe. There is supposed to be a gap between the top of the pipe and the underside of the cap so that your gas exhaust can vent out of your house. If it can’t vent, the pilot light can extinguish. When that happens there is a potential for carbon monoxide to accumulate in your home. This error by the roofing laborer had a tragic result for the family that lived in the house.

Due to this very high-profile accident, our local governing body, Pike Peak Regional Building, stated that roofers were not allowed to do this work. If it was to be done as part of the roof replacement, a mechanical contractor was to do the work. Very recently, that restriction has been lifted and roofers are now again allowed to replace these caps in El Paso County, however, Homestead Roofing has made an intentional decision to not have our laborers do this replacement and to continue hiring a mechanical contractor for this work.

Recently, I met our mechanical contractor at a job site to help him with the ladder work to get on the roof. Jim Kolar works for Furnace World in sales and project management, and has been exceptionally helpful by doing these cap replacements for us for the last 3 years. As we sat on the roof that warm, February day, Jim told me a story that re-solidified my decision to always have him do these cap replacements for us. Their technicians had gone to a house to do a furnace replacement. After getting the brand new furnace installed, they had troubles keeping it running. They investigated all the possible problems and then finally went on the roof to check the vent. They found a wrong cap installed on the furnace vent pipe. The roofing laborer had a 5” cap to put on a 4” pipe. Instead of getting a new, different cap, he just put that cap on the pipe, let it fall as far down as it would go, and then screwed it on. With no ventilation, the pilot light kept going out and preventing the new furnace from working correctly. This was a tragedy that was prevented by the timing – if the owners hadn’t bought a new furnace around the time the roof had been done, they may not have discovered this problem in time and had a house full of carbon monoxide.

But Why Replace It At All?

That’s a good question. Many of these caps aren’t dented enough to cause a problem, but every now and then we see some that are

This cap was squashed like a hamburger

completely demolished. We had one come in recently that had been smashed by hail so bad that ventilation was almost at 0% and was causing carbon monoxide to back up into the residence. This cap looked like a hamburger. The top half of it just squashed straight down onto the bottom half. Although it doesn’t seem like this is a critical component of your insurance claim, it can, if not replaced or not replaced correctly, become a danger to the occupants of the home.

We would like to see PPRBD renew the restriction on roofers being allowed to do this work. To replace one of these caps literally takes about 60 seconds, but I prefer having the peace of mind knowing that it has been done correctly when we ask Jim to do this for us and not trusting our laborers to try to do it. Sometimes, though, there’s a lot more involved in the replacements. Sometimes the pipe itself is corroded and needs repair or replacement, and we certainly don’t want an untrained person doing that. Most insurance companies recognize this need, too, and either include an HVAC labor minimum cost in their claims, or they allow us to supplement that cost and they pay it after the job is complete.

So if we’re doing your roof or we’ve already done it, and you have questions about the HVAC line items in your claim and want more information, just let us know by calling the office at 719-433-6991 or shoot me an Email at tracy@homesteadroofingcolorado.com.

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Residents of the El Paso County region are crying, “ENOUGH!” On Monday, January 9, 2017, hurricane force winds began pummeling Colorado Springs and the whole surrounding area and lasted for 3 days! Winds at Cheyenne Mountain Resort Center were recorded at 110mph. Zach and I had inspections to do that day and tried not to get blown off roofs, and as we drove around in the traffic as we saw 2 trucks which had been blown over on I-25 and followed several others which were rocking back and forth and weaving along the roads, looking like they were about to tip over. It was the most exciting drive through town I’ve ever had.

Downtown we saw several trees uprooted and laying down. We saw one laying on top of a car in the driveway of the house.

News sites and social media were blowing up with photos and videos of trees falling over, trucks over-turned, and roofs blowing off houses, but the news sites and social media weren’t the only things that began blowing up. Our phones did too! We immediately began getting dozens of phone calls from panicked, or nervous homeowners telling us that they were missing shingles or that they just wanted us to check their roofs for any potential damage.

All of this is directly on the heels of the massive hail storm that hit the region on July 28, 2016. We still have over 4 dozen roofs damaged from the hail storm that are in our queue for replacement and now we are responding as best as we can to the devastation caused by the “Colorado Hurricane” of 2017.

A Tree Downtown Smashes A Car In The Driveway

A Tree Downtown Smashes A Car In The Driveway

Even though you will be reading this a few weeks after this storm has come and gone, we would like to let you know what to do if something like this happens again.

Homestead Roofing has a 7 year workmanship warranty. If you have shingles that are damaged in a wind storm, in most cases our warranty will cover that, though there may be special circumstances that have to be considered on a case-by-case situation. If your shingles have been damaged by blowing debris, tree limbs, or trees, this is not covered under the labor warranty. If you ever think that you may have damage from wind or hail, please call our office at 719-433-6991 and ask for an inspection. Our goal is to treat you as we would want to be treated if it were our own homes affected by such a devastating storm. In the event of a major weather catastrophe, we will respond as fast as we can. In the case of an event that affects huge parts of the metro area and hundreds or thousands of people, we do try to prioritize the calls based on urgency.

As always, everyone here at Homestead Roofing is honored to serve you and thank you for trusting us with your home and roofing needs.

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TJ Klassen, with Insurance Centers of America, works closely with our project manager, Steve Moon and she recently sat down with us to talk about her perception of the roofing industry in Colorado Springs and she shared a couple of her own nightmare experiences with roofing contractors and roofing scams.

A Little Background On TJ

TJ has been an insurance agent with Insurance Centers of America (ICA) for 10 years, but has been in the insurance industry for over 30 years. She currently works in personal lines of insurance and sells policies for auto, home, umbrella, and rental properties. ICA is a local insurance agency that’s been in business for 38 years and are located only in Colorado. As all of our insurance agent referral partners do, TJ works hard to give assistance to her clients when a hailstorm happens in Colorado Springs. When a client calls TJ and tells her that they think they have hail damage, TJ says, “Before we turn in an insurance claim, let’s call a roofer. I’d be happy to refer you to someone if you’d like.”

There’s a reason that TJ, and other insurance agents do this. TJ is trying to protect her clients from having a claim on their record with no pay-out on the claim. If there is no damage on the roof, a qualified roofer will be able to determine this and inform the homeowner and advise him not to file a claim. Often, a homeowner calls the claims department of his insurance company first, assuming that he should have his insurance company inspect for damage, however, what happens when you call the claims department, you have just filed a claim, whether there is damage or not. That’s why it’s always best to have a roofer check it before you decide to file a claim.

Roof Scams

When we asked her if she had ever had one of her clients get scammed by a roofer, she surprised us by admitting that she had been victimized by 2 different roofers. One of them was canvassing through her neighborhood after a storm, at a time when she was younger and a brand new homeowner and didn’t know about door-to-door roofers. The roofer collected her deposit money and disappeared. On her second re-roof a few years ago, TJ thought she would use someone she thought she could trust and hired one of the agency’s clients who was a roofer. This roofer didn’t pull a permit for the project and TJ went through a lengthy battle to get them to pull the permit, only to then discover that the roofer bounced the check sent to Pikes Peak Regional Building Department. As TJ said, “When you experience bad roofers, it really opens your eyes, and when you find a good company that’s ethical and follows through, you will refer them over and over and over again. It makes a big difference.”

That’s when TJ began to tell us how thankful she is to have begun working with Steve Moon. Steve has been a project manager for Homestead Roofing since July, 2014, and he’s been working with TJ for almost 2 years now. Steve and TJ were introduced by a mutual acquaintance, Matt Surma, with Edward Jones Investments. One of the things that has been most important to TJ is the personal contact that Steve maintains with her clients and herself. Steve consistently lets everyone know what’s going on, what the extent of the damage is, what the status of the project and claim process is. She said that her customers report that they always understand what the process is and are not confused about how everything works. Her biggest frustration about other roofers is that she constantly gets calls from her clients complaining about the lack of communication they receive from their roofing contractors. As TJ stated, “I don’t have that with Homestead. Steve gets with the client and the client knows what’s going on. They’re always happy!”

Not only was it humbling to sit there with TJ as she described how big of a help it is to her in her business that Steve and Homestead Roofing takes such care with her clients, but it was incredibly instructive, too. None of us could have asked for a more impacting customer service training session than to just listen to TJ explain what a relief it is for her to know that she’s not going to have to handle confused or frustrated customers who have had to deal with a roofing company. We’re exceedingly thankful to have been able to provide this level of service to TJ and ICA and consistently strive (although imperfectly at times) to provide that same service to all of our referral partners who are insurance agents, realtors, and property managers, as well as each individual homeowner.

Thanks, TJ, and great job, Steve!

-Tracy

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Have you ever flown in an airplane with an 18 year old pilot? The photo is of me as passenger and Josiah, our office administrator/manager, as the pilot.

Homestead Roofing office administrator, Josiah Bookman, at the controls of the airplane

Homestead Roofing office administrator, Josiah Bookman, at the controls of the airplane with Tracy as the passenger

Josiah has been with us since January of 2016, but he has also been a licensed pilot since he was 18 (he’s now 20). He became interested in aviation at about 8 years old through a program called Young Eagles in which volunteers give free flights to kids and actually let them fly the plane! He began learning to fly gliders when he was 14 and he earned his pilot’s license at 16. After that, he moved on to learning to fly powered airplanes and earned his certificate for that last year.

His interest in aviation doesn’t just include flying the planes. He is also a volunteer and an instructor for a non-profit organization called Aviation Education Foundation of Colorado (AEFCO). As it states on their website, “The mission of (AEFCO) is to provide aviation education programs for local young people that promote an awareness of careers in professional aviation and aerospace fields.” The aviation industry is beginning to see a sharp decline in the number of professional pilots, so AEFCO, and other organizations, are working diligently to prepare and qualify young people, ages 15 – 19, for careers in those areas.

AEFCO accomplishes their goal with a FREE10-day intensive program in the summer and also a FREE 6-month long program in the fall and winter. You read that right… what they offer to these young people is FREE! In the summer “camp” the students spend their time learning the materials to prepare for the written exam for pilots. To become a pilot, a person must pass a written exam, an oral exam, and a “checkride” with an instructor. Attending the summer camp enables the students to work toward completing the first step toward becoming a pilot. Some of them even get flight time with an instructor during the camp. Josiah has been an instructor for AEFCO for the last 2 years, but he’s no sophmore, having been involved with AEFCO in some capacity since 2011. This fall he becomes the Chair of the Pilot Prep Course.

Currently, in addition to being the office administrator/manager for Homestead Roofing, Josiah also is a full-time student at Pikes Peak Community College and plans to transfer to UCCS in pursuit of a BS in Mathematics. After college his aspiration is to enter the field of aviation education in some capacity, but he still plans to continue with his role at AEFCO as well.

Josiah started working for Homestead Roofing because of timing. He was ready to start college, but needed a flexible work schedule. He had been working at Freeflights Composites, a company that designs, repairs, and builds composite aircraft at Meadowlake Airport, but his expected work-load at college meant that he wouldn’t be able to put in the time necessary at Freeflights.

As soon as he joined us he began tackling the responsibilities that go with managing a fast-growing and fast-paced contracting business. At any given time, we could be handling up to 100 different projects in some

Josiah gets strapped in for a Young Eagles flight when he was 13

Josiah gets strapped in for a Young Eagles flight when he was 13

stage of progress and Josiah has the task of freeing up the rest of us so we can concentrate on making sure our clients’ experience is the best possible and that our jobs are done with excellent quality. Josiah quickly outgrew being just the office administrator and developed that position into the office manager position. Basically, he runs the place. He even gets to tell me (his dad) how things need to be done (some times! :-). Without his initiative and ability to put things into processes and systems, considering how busy we have been this year, I don’t see how we could be successfully running our projects for our clients. Josiah is also the one you may reach if you call our main phone number, so he will gather your information and pass it on to the project manager you have worked with in the past. Josiah is a huge asset to our company. He moves behind the scenes, but moves the scenes that he’s behind.

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In a recent meeting with prospective clients, the wife asked me, “What questions should we be asking you?”

Wow! What a great question! And it provides an excellent opportunity to inform our readers of what to ask any potential roofer you’re considering hiring.

Question #1: Do you have general liability insurance AND workmen’s comp insurance?

By far, this is the most important question you should ask. If the contractor doesn’t have GL insurance, he can’t get a license in El Paso County. Additionally, if anything on your property gets damaged, and he doesn’t have insurance, you will probably have to pay to repair it yourself.

If the contractor doesn’t have workmen’s comp insurance and someone on the crew gets injured, you, as the storm-chasing roofer in Colorado Springshomeowner, may be liable for any medical costs incurred, especially if a personal injury lawyer gets involved and you get sued for damages.


Don’t be fooled by any contractor who tells you he isn’t required to have workmen’s comp insurance. While it’s currently true that a company with no employees doesn’t need workman’s comp insurance in El Paso County, do you want to take the risk of being potentially liable for thousands or hundreds of thousands of dollars of medical costs for an injured worker?

Lastly, get a current copy of the contractor’s insurance certificates. When asking for a copy of the insurance certificate, ask the contractor to have his insurance carrier Email, fax, or mail you a copy of the certificate. Don’t accept a printed copy that he hands you because it is too easy to falsify an this document.

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