Michigan became one of the hardest hit states during the COVID-19 pandemic, causing anxiety in thousands of residents as they shelter in place during the state's "Stay Home, Stay Safe" order. With that in mind, a roofing contractor in Ottawa County is lending a hand to homeowners.

Dan Hendricks, owner of The Roof Dr. in Allendale, Mich., said that his company launched a free emergency repairs initiative to help residents in their time of need.

"There's a lot of fear and anxiety in people today, and we just wanted to be part of spreading peace of mind and kindness and reminding our community that there's still people out there that care for them," said Hendricks.

Hendricks said calls to his business went dead two weeks prior to the shelter-in-place order. He said in lieu of shutting down, he decided to begin advertising the free emergency repair service. Since then, the phone is constantly ringing.

"The response has been overwhelming, we've got hundreds and hundreds of calls since we started doing it, and not just for emergency services, but for people who want us to do their projects because we're helping other people and they want to help us," he said. 

Much like other roofing contractors, The Roof Dr. is taking precautions when it comes to serving customers in this social distancing environment. The company is doing contact-free inspections and repairs, using everything from Zoom to phone calls and emails to communicate with clients. 

Hendricks offered the deal through April 14 when Michigan's shelter-in-place order was set to expire. Upon learning Michigan's governor extended it to the end of April, The Roof Dr. decided to continue offering free emergency repairs, and plans to do so if it's extended further. In fact, since Hendricks started promoting the offer, he said other contractors have been doing the same.

"We can only do so much, and we've seen some of our competitors start to offer free emergency roof repairs as well, and that just means more people get helped, because we can't get to them all," he said.

In addition to free emergency repairs, The Roof Dr., a recipient of GAF's 2019 President's Award, is giving away a free roof to a family in its community at the end of April. The eligible winner will be randomly chosen for a new roof makeover, up to a maximum total value of $10,000. The contractor also gave away gift cards to people who spread the message about the roof giveaway and the emergency repair service.