There are many questions to ask yourself if you are facing the decision to re-roof. So, go ahead, ask yourself the questions and then research the answers. Am I going to go with the cheapest or look for the best? Can I get it repaired or do I need a complete re-roof? Need some help?
First, assess the roof. If you have a shake roof, look and see if there are signs of aging. Are you finding blown-off shakes all over your yard? Are the shakes lifting or curling? Do you find mysterious water spots on your ceilings? Don’t forget to check the attic for leaks too. If you have a composition shingle roof, does the roof look like it is crumbling or granuelly? Can you still see the outline of your shingles? With a tile roof, the problems are not always so evident. Here you look for water stains inside the house or attic then look for broken tiles. By the way, this can be tricky for the inexperienced leak investigator, since you can do more damage walking on this type of roof trying to locate your broken tiles. Yes, there is a method to traversing a tile roof, and usually a roofing contractor is the one you want up there walking around.
Once the decision to re-roof has been made it is essential that you do some research before jumping at the first offer. Consider what kind of options you have: What new products are on the market? What kind of roof compliments the style of my home best? A good way to get a feel of the newer products out there is to visit a tradeshow or talk to an expert at the local hardware supplies store.
Next, call a licensed contractor out to look over the roof and see if you really need a new one or can the existing roof be repaired. If he says you need a new roof, be sure to check his qualifications. You should request the following: Business name, address, and phone number. Experience, training and age of the company (How long have they been in business). Business license and contractor’s license are required. He should have the appropriate insurances; worker’s compensation and general liability. Ask for references; this is a great way to see the contractor’s work and ask others if they are satisfied with the end product and way in which the work was conducted. Discuss warranties, building permits, and length of time to do your work.
Then, when choosing your new roof be sure to take into consideration the local regulations on what kind of materials you can choose from. Many areas of California no longer allow wood shingle or shakes due to fire hazards. Also, many homeowners’ associations only allow certain types of roofing to be installed. I know of a situation where a homeowner purchased his shingles, and when they were delivered, the local CC&R people showed up and put a stop to his having the roof installed because it was not up to the code their development required. It was unfortunate as he had already purchased the material and now had to go through the process of sending it back and getting something else that would be allowed.
Tackling a re-roof project can be just that, a project. the right approach and some good planning and research can help you a lot along the way. Hopefully this article has helped you determine if you truly need to re-roof, and how to go about putting on a new roof that you will truly enjoy.