One of the first things to look into is the company’s name and address. Since the advent of the internet, everyone gets their information online. When looking at roofing contractors, make sure they have an actual physical address. A PO box or temporary office may provide insight to the lack of financial stability the roofing contractor has. It also makes it much harder to locate the contractor should a problem arise.
Another important item to look into is how long the roofing contractor has been in the business. The longer a roofing contractor has been in business, the more stable the company. Roofing contractors in business for fewer than five years may be unstable and still learning how to do things the right way by making mistakes. A roofing company that has been around for awhile tends to have a good reputation for doing the job and getting it done right.
A professional roofing contractor will have all the necessary insurance to protect the contractor and all employees. This includes liability insurance and workers’ compensation. To verify their insurance, ask for a certificate of insurance and then call up the insurance company to guarantee the roofing contractor is current and has not lapsed on their insurance. Workers’ compensation is especially important because without it, if a worker gets injured on the job, the building owner can be held liable. This means paying for all medical bills and compensating for out of work paycheck losses.
Aside from insurance, a good roofing contractor needs to have a license to do the job. Most states declare it illegal to hire a contractor without a license. If a building owner hires an unlicensed contractor and they do a shoddy job that causes damage to the interior and/or exterior of the building, the owner will most likely not be able to recoup any costs.
Never choose a roofing contractor without first getting references and referrals. Always ask for photographs of completed work that is similar to what is being requested. Ask for a list of at least six of the most recent customers. While individuals do not have to call all of them, it provides an opportunity to pick randomly. Ask them questions such as if they were satisfied with the final job, if the contractor cleaned up afterwards and if the contractor did everything listed in the estimate. Finally, always ask if they would rehire that roofing contractor again.
One last thing to look at before choosing a roofing contractor is their record of solving any customer complaints. The Better Business Bureau offers insight of the number of complaints and how they were solved. It is always better to locate a roofing contractor that is a member of the BBB. Individuals can also call the state licensing board to see if there have been complaints against the license and/or if it has been suspended in the past.