Contractors ask for patience on derecho repairs as they await materials

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) -The derecho last August created a large demand for home repairs in Cedar Rapids. Many homeowners are still waiting for new siding, roofs and windows. Contractors are asking homeowners to be patient as they wait for materials to be available to complete those jobs.

“We’re going to be here until we get everything done, we’re not going to leave anybody hanging,” said .

Anson’s company is based out of Lincoln, Nebraska but he’s been coming to Cedar Rapids every week since the derecho to help put his hometown back together.

”This is the community that I grew up in. I was, you know I was raised here. It means a lot for me to be here you know,” Anson explained.

He and his team have worked on more than 200 homes since the storm and expect to fix up around 300 in all, but there is a shortage of materials like siding.

“If it was ordered Monday of this week, we are looking at 6 months before we will get our siding in,” Anson said.

The shortage is leading to delays that Anson says are out of the contractor’s hands.

“COVID shut down the plants, you know a lot of people aren’t wanting to go back to work. They’re struggling to keep up with you know making the material,” he said.

is on Anson’s list of around 50 to 60 homes awaiting siding.

”I think we’re down to the last 2 or 3 weeks, pending the final arrival of supplies,” Wilson said.

But not all homeowners have been as understanding. Anson told us contractors like himself have been heckled throughout this experience. He wants people in the community to know they’re doing the best they can.

“We are working until our hands are blistered and raw. Our minds are mush. Our bodies feel like we’ve been shot through a fence. You know some days we don’t eat until you know 6 or 7-o-clock at night because we are hurrying to get these jobs done. I just want the homeowners that are so quick to jump and judge and throw all the contractors in one pool that we’re all bad, we’re not. Without us, this town would be the way it was the day the storm hit,” Anson explained.

Wilson says homeowners should do their homework when finding a contractor, but then they need to understand, it may be a waiting game after that.

“Just practice patience, because it’s going to get here but maybe not as soon as you think, so just be patient and it will all come about,” she said.

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