Before you start looking for a roofing contractor
, decide what kind of roof
you want. Then you can find a specialist who has the brand and premium you are seeking. Choose a local company because they will have more time to spend on the job and will be easier to contact. A good roofing contractor
takes pride in their work, and will be enthusiastic about the possibility of your business. Remember never to just go with the contractor who offers you the best price. Let them know you aren’t looking for the cheapest quote, but a company who will provide the best value.
The first thing to do is get a written estimate from the roofing contractor that specifies what work will be done, all the costs and fees, and the specific time to expect project completion. Ask them if they are licensed, bonded and insured. If the job is going to require laborers, make sure the contractor has workers compensation insurance. If they don’t have this, and a work suffers an injury while working on your roof, you could be liable for hospital bills and other expenses. Ask the roofing contractor to show you proof of insurance.
Ask to see work they have done in the past 2 years. Talk to the residents and see if they are happy with what was done. Ask them if they performed their work on time, how did the contractor react to changes, were their interests taken care of, and do they feel the roofing contractor is trustworthy? Also, ask to speak to a customer who had a complaint, and see how it was handled. Call the Better Business Bureau and find out if there have been complaints, if the roofing contractor ever had their license suspended, and if they ever lost a work-related court case.
Make sure you get a contract in writing that contains every aspect of the job from hauling away the old roof to replacing any landscape that is damaged. Make sure you read the contract very carefully. Most problems come from contractual problems, not with the work itself. Discuss how weather, such as sun, rain, snow, wind, dust, trees, and branches will affect the roof you have chosen.
Check to see if they are a member of a trade association or have taken continuing education training. Make sure you get proof of this. Ask them about a warranty as well. You want to get a warranty for 2 years for workmanship and materials prior to securing them. If there is going to be a problem with the roof it usually will happen in this 2 year window. Make sure you understand everything about the warranty and guarantees.
Request a condition waiver and materials release upon job completion. Once you have paid the roofing contractor in full it is their responsibility to pay the materials supplier in full. With this release, the suppliers cant make you responsible or put a lien on your property if the contractor doesn’t pay. They should be able to provide you with a manufacturer warranty as well. It’s important to get in writing that the roof will be installed by the manufacturer’s specifications.
Finally, discuss proper ventilation and have the roofing contractor check your current ventilation. Improper ventilation will damage your shingles, and can invalidate your manufacturer’s warranty. Ask if someone will be supervising the job, and make sure the roof is going to be inspected when the job is complete.