For most homeowners, the roof is the costliest item they will ever have to replace, and of course, your roof is key to protecting your biggest asset – your home. However, hiring the right roofing expert to replace or repair your roof can be a challenge for many homeowners, and simply choosing the least expensive roofing contractor is not a good way to approach the problem. It’s all too common to end up with a new roof that just isn’t installed properly and will have a problem with leaks when you hire a roofer based on their low prices alone. Following a few simple rules can reassure property owners that they are hiring the best roofer for their individual needs, despite the confusion and uncertainty that is often there.
It’s important for your chosen roofing company to have had experience with the specific type of roof that you have. Always ask your chosen roofing contractor if they have experience with the specific type of roof that you’re planning to have installed. Certification in the various types of flat roofing is a requirement for a commercial roofing contractor, and some of the common names include GAF, Versico, MuleHide, and Carlisle Syntec. When it comes to familiarity with types of residential roofing, the names Atlas Roofing, IKO, Owens Corning, and Certain Tweed should all be familiar names. When it comes to something as important as a new roof, it also pays to be specific when trying to find the ideal contractor. The requirements for installing and preparing different types of roofs can vary, and if you want a shingle, tile, or slate roof you need to know the contractor is experienced in installing it and is familiar with the techniques and material. Ask the roofing company if they have experience in installing a metal shake tile roof, rather than just a metal roof; you really need to be that specific if you are planning on a metal shake tile roof.
Being Knowledgeable with Roofing Construction Guidelines and Procedures
Unfortunately, not all roofing companies are knowledgeable about installing or repairing a roof. It’s all too easy for a roofing contractor to have great marketing skills and run a profitable business, but without actually having the required expertise to do the job. Some possible questions to ask a potential roofing contractor might include these:
- Are you current with building requirements and local and national codes?
- Did they inspect and assess your ventilation system?
- If so, have they any suggestions for improvements?
- Was your roof decking inspected and were any potential rotting or unsafe areas identified?
- Did they mention any redecking that might be needed?
- Will ridge caps and starter strips be utilized by the roofing company?
- What about replacing any roof accessories and pipe jacks?
- Will they commence work with a clean deck after having replaced the current shingles?
And just as importantly, what is their rating with the local BBB (Better Business Bureau)?
An A + rating with the BBB is what you should be looking for when it comes to finding a roofer to work with. Great customer service, quality materials, and the ability to get the work done on time and within budget can be assured when a roofing contractor has a high BBB rating.
Look at a Company’s Website and Any Previous Work Carried Out
An easy way to check the experience, credentials, and type of work undertaken is to take a look at a company’s website. These days, any reputable company has to have its own website, and you should be wary of working with a company that doesn’t. Even better if the website shows examples of roof work carried out previously.
Testimonials and Referrals from Customers
Yelp! and Google are great places to look for reviews and comments from other customers who have worked with that roofing contractor. And you may also find reviews and recommendations from customers on the contractor’s website. Some contractors are more than happy to provide you with a list of previous and satisfied customers. You are more likely to have a positive experience with your chosen contractor if other customers have taken the time to write and post positive reviews. In fact, you probably should avoid any roofing contractor who doesn’t have positive referrals from customers and work with someone else.
You Should Never Have to Pay Upfront for a New Roof
Not all local roofing contractors are who they say they are and you should be careful you don’t become one of the thousands of homeowners who are conned out of their money by paying upfront. Needless to say, any reputable contractor won’t ask you for payment until the job has been completed to your satisfaction. The same applies if your roof is being replaced for insurance claim reasons; the bill should be paid after the work is finished. However, a nominal downpayment is acceptable if you were given a cash estimate for your replacement roof.
Free Estimates and Inspections
A free and no obligation is something that any professional roofing contractor is able to provide, and of course, you should also expect a clear and thorough estimate for the work. And any reliable roofing company will also let you know if your roof can be repaired rather than replaced; that will cost you less and will still provide full protection for your family and your home. You should also be expected to be given all the options and different solutions that match your budget if your roof needs replacing rather than repairing.
Extra curb appeal, better protection from the elements, and a house that’s worth more when you sell it. These are some of the benefits of having a new roof installed, although it’s obviously important to have the work carried out by a professional, experienced and licensed contractor. Although you may take the roof on your home for granted, it’s one of the most important parts of it, as well as probably the most expensive part to replace. Hiring the right company is a must!