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He hired them to cut down a tree. They dropped it on his home: 'This is probably going to financially ruin me'

Posted at 4:39 PM, Oct 10, 2023

PETERSBURG, Va. -- When Ryan Miller decided on a tree-cutting service to take care of a large tree in his Petersburg yard, he said he was not anticipating the headache it would cause.

"I just mainly wanted to make sure they had insurance because of the proximity to my neighbor's house," Miller said.

While at work, he said he received a call from his neighbor that the tree service arrived a day early and while removing the tree it fell on his roof.

"Shock, I’m still in shock now," Miller said describing the moments he saw what happened to his home. "The gutter tore down, the soffit, the fascia tore off, you can look at the angle of the door going down, it pushed it down so hard it cracked the siding."

Tree on Petersburg home

The tree caused extensive damage to the roof and structure of his home.

"If you look at these little duct tape parts, that's where I had to release the water," Miller said describing the hole in the plastic covering he taped to his ceiling. "I put the plastic up because there's so many cracks. I’m just afraid of bugs, pests, rain, so I was trying do what I could to seal it up."

Tree on Petersburg home

Miller said he hoped to resolve things quickly with the tree service's insurance company but reached out to CBS 6 frustrated after he received an offer from the insurance adjuster he said did not feel adequate for the damage done.

"The insurance company wants to give me $21,000 and I got [repair] estimates for like $30,000 up to $65,000," Miller said. "I know he didn't go in that crawl space up under the house and look at that stuff so that’s why I question how accurate it is."

Miller said he never thought the cleanup would cost him more than the job itself and said he hoped the insurance company would do its due diligence in fixing his home.

"All I know is this is probably going to financially ruin me unless one of these insurance companies helps me out," Miller said.

Tree on Petersburg home

CBS 6 spoke with the insurance company and was told they could not comment on an open claim.

Miller said he just wanted other people to make sure they do extensive research on a company and their insurance before deciding to hire.

This is a developing story, so anyone with more information can email newstips@wtvr.com to send a tip.

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