I-Team 8

Westfield homes damaged in storm face delays amid building supply shortage

WESTFIELD, Ind. (WISH) — The Saturday storm came out of the west and just about every house in this Westfield neighborhood has damage to a west-facing wall.

Scott Zabinsky was able to get his wife’s car into the garage just as the storm hit his neighbor.  

Home surveillance cameras caught the storm coming through his neighborhood. The front of his house is brick, but his shutters, porch swing, awning and kids pool have been destroyed. For about 15 minutes, hail pummeled the north side of Indianapolis and Hamilton County. In the bright sunshine on Monday the damage is clear.

J.J. Beard of Elbert roofing said with the hail came strong winds and very heavy rain.

“So a lot of the roofs are newer so we questioned it, we got in the roofs and we have seen a substantial roof damage, siding, gutters, windows, screens pretty much anything exposed to the elements is damaged,” Beard said.  

Beard walked I-Team 8 around one of the houses his company is scheduled to repair. The west side of the house is a mess, the rear and east side are in decent shape. But getting the materials to make all the repairs could be a challenge. David Smith of Reese Building Supply said homeowners need to be patient.  

“The supply chain right now, I have been doing this for 20 years and it is probably the worst it has ever been. Typically to get a truck of shingles was about a week or so, right now it could be up to 12 weeks,” Smith said. 

Smith added that many of the manufacturers of building supplies are still trying to catch up from last year’s pandemic shutdown. The limited supply has also affected prices. Plywood has tripled in price over the last year and the price of shingles is up.  

“We have all been ordering, we placed orders back in October and November and are still waiting for some of that to come in,” Smith said. 

Homes without significant shingle and siding damage may have to wait until this fall to get the repairs done. As homeowners wait for repairs, Tim Maniscalo of the Central Indiana Better Business Bureau warns you to check out contractors before writing any checks.  

“When someone does gives you their card, don’t automatically give them money,” Maniscalo said. “You want to make certain that you are getting several estimates on it, so just make certain that you are very wary of people that are trying to give you the bum’s rush on this to do something very, very quick.”

The shortage of building material is expected to last the better part of this year. The storms in the south and supply chain issues caused by the pandemic are not going to be fixed anytime soon.