WRAL Investigates

Local builder helps woman get new roof

Posted October 6, 2010

— Alison Myers finally has a new roof.

“It looks great,” she said. “Of what they've done already, it looks wonderful.”

Not too long ago, though, it looked as if Myers wouldn’t be getting her roof as soon as she wanted.

In April, a salesperson with Atlanta-based American Shingle made the rounds in Myers’ neighborhood.

His pitch to Myers: Let American Shingle put the roof on if it could get her insurance company to pay for it.

Myers agreed.

In June, she gave American Shingle the nearly $3,000 down-payment check from her insurance company.

The job was supposed to start in August, but instead of a new roof, she received a letter saying the company was "forced to close its doors" because of "significant financial hardship."

“(I was) completely angry about the whole thing,” Myers said.

Myers is one of more than a dozen people who complained to 5 on Your Side about American Shingle.

Combined, they paid the company more than $71,000 but never got the roofs for which they paid.

Better Business Bureaus across the country report hundreds of complaints. So does the North Carolina Attorney General’s Office.

In August, it got a court order to stop American Shingle from doing business in the state.

But it appears it's too late.

Last month, the company filed bankruptcy, which includes a legal notation saying that "there does not appear to be any property available (to the trustee) to pay creditors."

The filing also includes information that will outrage many customers. In the months leading up to the bankruptcy, the company’s chief executive officer, Carlton Dunko, collected tens of thousands of dollars in shareholder payments.

WRAL News learned Wednesday that the Secret Service is investigating Dunko and other company officers for possible criminal charges.

“It bothers me big-time to see anybody get took,” said Robert Williams, who owns Housetop Roofing.

After seeing a report on WRAL News in August, he wanted to help Myers.

“I just wanted to come out and just do a new roof for her,” Williams said.

He offered to do the job for free, but Myers is paying him the $1,700 her insurance company still owes.

“I wish I could do a lot more to a lot of other people the same way,” Williams said. “That's just the way I was raised. I was raised to be honest and to treat a person the way that you want to be treated.”

“It's wonderful,” Myers said. “It's very generous. I cannot believe that he would offer something like that to us, but there’s good people out there.”

This is another reminder of why it's so important to thoroughly check out a company before signing to do business and to not pay anymore than 10 percent of the total cost of the job as a down-payment.

Williams says he never takes a deposit at all unless the homeowner is getting a special-order item.


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  • beachblues1 Oct 14, 2010

    Housetop Roofing will definitely get my business. In the past I have found most roofing companies to be priced close to each other on my previous house roof bids. But I will always hire someone like Mr. Williams, even if he is the higest bid.
    I would rather pay a little extra up front, than have serious issues on the back end.

  • fisunt Oct 11, 2010

    macharsam I never have nor never will pay for a job until it is finished to my satisfaction. If you do you are the type that these scam artists love. This guy will probably be back in business next week under another name with another product, so go ahead and give him your money when he knocks on your door. He won't get mine. If it sounds too good to be true it probably is a scam...

  • dixieboy Oct 8, 2010

    "How does he?" - It's called responsible management of operating capitol, and he obviously knows how to market that skill through quality wokmanship - he didn't ask for media coverage did he? Looks like a win - win to me.

  • snowl Oct 8, 2010

    How does he buy the materials and pay his employees on time if he never takes a deposit? That policy won't hold up in the long run, he is looking for publicity and I can't blame him for that! LOL

  • Whosays Oct 7, 2010

    Robert you are a man to be commended, thanks for looking out for folks!

  • 2beachy4u Oct 7, 2010

    It is great to hear there are still honest people in business like him! I will recommend him to anyone in that area!

  • ncsurromom Oct 7, 2010

    Robert Williams is the owner of Housetop Roofing. His number is 556-2480.

  • HappyGirl08 Oct 7, 2010


    I found their website.

  • HappyGirl08 Oct 7, 2010

    That is really wonderful. I hope people are writing down the name of this man's company so they can call him if they ever need help. He deserves the work.

  • sydsmom1 Oct 7, 2010

    who knows williams phone number got 4 roofs he can possibly do on some rental property