LEE COUNTY, Fla. - The high demand for roofs has led to a new hurdle contractors have to clear. Thieves and other unscrupulous characters steal stacked up shingles right from unfinished roofs.
"People don't want to pay the price of the shingles and the materials," Larry Ploski told 4 In Your Corner. "So, they end up stealing it instead," he added.
Ploski said he's seen it happen twice to one of the companies he partners with. The contractors left for the day and then saw them disappear the next morning. It leaves builders in a real bind.
"There's only so many times you can take a hit like this and it starts to hurt after a while," he said.
Sometimes the crooks try their best to blend in and pose as workers or contractors.
"Thieves are opportunists. They'll case out a job and see who is and isn't securing their supplies," Ploski said.
Cape Coral Police told 4 In Your Corner they've checked on calls about stolen building materials before.
"If you see somebody near a building site and they don't look right to you, call us and we'll go and check them out," Corporal Phil Mullen told 4 In Your Corner.
The thieves strike when it is dark out. Ploski suggests you also pay attention to the direction the supplies are going.
"If you see shingles coming off of a roof, that's usually a problem," Ploski said. "They should be coming on it, not coming off of it," he added.
Police recommend you to try and store building materials in a garage if possible to help lower the risk of them being stolen.