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CAM – 2019 Year In Review

Things are going well for CAM! We just had a very nice storm event that should have everyone finish strong for 2019 and start off 2020 in a good position.

CAM has had over 10 years of hard work by members, suppliers, manufacturers and former board members building the foundation for our organization to face the challenges and the opportunities that lie ahead.

CAM has built a good working relationship with the Department of Labor and Industry that did not exist 10 years ago. We have a full time lobbyist protecting our interests and quashing any rogue ideas the insurance federation comes up with at the Capitol. There has not been one piece of harmful legislation that has gotten through in 10 years, but Lord knows they have tried. CAM was also able to push through our first piece of legislation regarding notifying homeowners that waiving deductibles is against MN law.

In the last several years, we have met with the Department of Commerce concerning insurance carrier misbehavior, the Minnesota Department of Health in regards to Lead RRP, and the top building code officials in Minnesota to try to enforce insurance to build to MN code. Several of us have testified at the Capitol when the insurance federation was trying to play fast and loose.

We are now an affiliate of the National Roofing Contractors Association-NRCA- and look forward to offering benefits, education and discounts to all of our members.

We have a good working relationship with the Builders Association of MN and have joined forces fighting harmful bills that would have negatively impacted our businesses and our homeowners. This spring we participated in Builder’s Day at the Capitol and about 30 of us from CAM were able to sit down and meet individually with each of our senators and representatives. That was a powerful day. I would like to see 100 of us there next year.

We have an education committee that has been traveling the state to teach contractors best practices for running a business in today’s environment. Tim Johnson from RSJ and Mike Goldenstein from GAF spent their spring in Mankato, Duluth, Rochester and multiple locations in the Twin Cities educating contractors about the law and manufacturing specs-how to use them to make sure a home is properly restored. We have also teamed up with the BBB to help homeowners when their home suffers a loss and all the different services the BBB provides to contractors.

We also have a group of dedicated board and committee members who take time from their busy life to volunteer for the good of our industry as a whole, not just their own company.

So, what does the future look like? As we continue to have storm events that are more severe and expensive, this will have far reaching impact on all of our businesses. We need to proactively create our future, not just blindly react to insurance companies, regulations and legislation after the fact-when it might be too late.

What do we want for the future of CAM?

We want 100 contractors at Builders Day next Spring- we want them to know CAM is a force to be reckoned with. We want CAM to be a resource for homeowners to find a good contractor- for our seal to mean they have found someone they can trust. We want to help contractors become better business people, to be leaders in the industry. We want everyone to stop using the phrase “Code Upgrades” and start using the correct term- Minimum Code Standards. It’s not an upgrade, it’s the law and we should be paid for it!

Most of all we want us as contractors to get beyond our own competitiveness and work together against the insurance companies – because right now they are kicking our ass out there every single day. Until we get over ourselves and look at that other contractor in the truck at the stop light with the ladder hanging out–not as an enemy, but as powerful ally- they are going to continue to kick our asses.

What can you do to help?

Get the word out! If you are a sponsor, you see many more contractors on a daily basis than our contractor members ever will. Let your customers know about how we protect their businesses and our upcoming education events. Every time you can help your contractors, you make them more successful. Every successful contractor you work with makes you more successful.

If you are a contractor and not a member, you should be. We are the only ones fighting for you out there.

No other association looks out specifically for the Exterior and Remodeling Contractor like we do………

We have a great opportunity to make real progress for our organization and our industry. Let us take that opportunity and run with it.

Tracy Dahlin
Chairperson – CAM Voting Board


Homes For Our Troops (HFOT) – Groundbreaking – Marco Solt Residence

MN Association of Exterior Specialists has joined BATC and Lyman Roofing and Siding to help with donations and the contribution effort for HFOT and the Solt residence.

Homes for our troops is a privately funded non-profit organization that has completed over 180 homes for wounded veterans nationally. 90% of funds raised go directly to wounded veterans. The Solt home will be the 2nd project in MN done by HFOT. Later this year, they will start a 3rd house in Moorhead for a MN National Guard soldier who was injured on a deployment with the 34th Infantry Division Red Bulls.

In the United States, we have over 1.7 million veterans who have deployed since 2001 with 34% deploying more than one time. Roughly one of every 5 suffers from a major depression or PTSD, with only half getting treatment. The Solt home is an example of how we can help our fellow veteran-citizens with the challenges they face.

Please, think about your neighbors, the families at your church or that individual at work that may need help. Just last week we had approximately 500 soldiers of the 34th ID combat aviation brigade from the twin Cities return from a year long deployment. The reintegration process is difficult, please do whatever you can to help out.


Bluebird House Project

The Blue Bird House is a group home operated by Homeward Bound in Plymouth that provides 24 hour care for four medically fragile men. The home has been transformed by the addition of a light filled great room, the addition of a second bathroom and bedroom, more storage and a first floor laundry room. MNAES provide all siding material and labor through Iron River Construction. On February 17th keys will be turned over to the Bluebird House at a key ceremony.




Homes For Our Troops – SPC Marco Solt Update

In 2015 The MNAES had the opportunity to make dreams come true for one family and the staff and members of a group home by providing support through our community outreach committee. Army SPC Marco Solt is a Brooklyn Center native whose vehicle encountered an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) on his first deployment in Afghanistan. Marco lost both of his legs in the explosion and now uses prosthetics and his wheelchair to get around. MNAES provided LP siding and all the installation labor through PCS Residential for the house along with roofing material and installation labor through All Star Construction. Marco’s home was equipped with over 40 special adaptations including widened doorways, lowered countertops, roll-under cook tops and sinks designed to ensure full wheelchair accessibility and provided to him mortgage free during a key ceremony in November.




New “Deductible” Law Affects Contractors Who Perform Storm Repairs

What changed?

  • State law  prohibits contractors from offering to pay homeowners’ insurance deductibles or offering anything of value as encouragement to enter into a contract to repair damage covered by an insurance claim.
  • A new law (effective since Aug. 1, 2018) requires that contractors include a written notification about the law in their “initial estimate.” The “initial estimate” also includes price agreeable contracts.
  • The new law also requires insurance companies to provide a similar written notification to homeowners in their initial correspondence about a claim.

Why the change?

  • Many contractors who have complied with the law that prohibits paying deductibles have lost business to contractors who illegally offer to pay deductibles or offer rebates or upgrades that are barred.
  • Homeowners are unclear about this law and some still expect their contractor to help with insurance deductible costs. This new law provides contractors with solid information to show that this practice is simply illegal.

What do I need to do?

  • If your company does not perform insurance repair to homes, you do not need to do anything as this law does not affect your business.
  • If you do perform insurance repair work, you will need to update your contracts to include a written notification of the law that prohibits covering deductibles.
  • The notification can be included in the contract document or provided to the customer as a separate document.

What should the notification say?

The law does not provide specific language to be included, but we suggest the following:

State law (Minn. Stat. § 325E.66) prohibits contractors from offering to pay a customer’s insurance deductible or offering anything of value as an inducement to enter into a contract for home repairs that are to be paid for as a part of an insurance claim. Contractors who make such an offer are subject to public enforcement action by the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry, including fines of up to $10,000 per violation.

 Where can I ask questions?

Contact us at 651-284-5069 or dli.contractor@state.mn.us.


Big Legislative Win For CAM And Minnesota Contractors!

The Contractors Association of Minnesota chalked upon another win at the legislature this past session! Given the divided government and the truly acrimonious session between the Legislative and the Executive Branch this year CAM was able to pass a small but significant piece of legislation.  The legislation requires insurance companies as well as contractors to clearly explain in writing that an insurance deductible can not be paid as part of a contract with a homeowner.  You may recall that some years ago, the Insurance Federation of Minnesota passed a law prohibiting this practice.  With the spate of yearly storm occurrences, there has been an increase in this practice by insurance adjusters as well as contractors that encourage or offer to have the deductible paid by the contractor.  This is illegal and can result in an enforcement action against the contractor by the Department of Labor and Industry.

All written estimates by the insurance industry and contractors must note this.  It is suggested that your written estimates have the following statement on every estimate.  It is also suggested that you point this out to all of your customers when negotiating a contract.

State law (Minn. Stat. § 325E.66) prohibits contractors from offering to pay a customer’s insurance deductible or offering anything of value as an inducement to enter into a contract for home repairs that are to be paid for as a part of an insurance claim.  Contractors who make such an offer are subject to public enforcement action by the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry including fines of up to $10,000 per violation.

Please contact Lisa Frenette at frenettela@gmail.com if you have further questions or any concerns.

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