Your roof protects your home, your family and all your belongings. Deferred roofing maintenance can cost you more in the long run. When you need roof repairs or a new roof entirely, how do you go about selecting the right roofer for the job?
First, do your research. Check online for reviews and ratings. The local Better Business Bureau and Chamber of Commerce are good places to start. You can also ask friends and family if they can refer someone.
Second, contact one or more roofing contractors to request a free estimate. A legitimate company should be willing to invest the time to get your business. Have a list of questions to ask the contractor when you meet with them.
Third, always make sure the contractor is properly licensed, bonded and insured. You can ask to see copies of licenses and certificates of insurance. These should include a state contractor’s license, General Liability Insurance and Worker’s Compensation Insurance. If a roofing contractor does not carry Worker’s Compensation, you may notice that the estimate is considerably less in price. But this means that his/her workers are not covered for injuries sustained on the job.
Ask to see a list of references. If the contractor is reputable, he/she should have them on file and be able to provide them immediately.
Make sure the roofing contractor is highly qualified in installing your product. Whether it’s tile, shingles or skylights, they should be knowledgeable about the materials and how to install them. Some contractors are actually certified by the manufacturer and should be willing to show their certifications.
Upon receiving a proposal and contract, make sure the contracts are legal and state your rights and the contractor’s rights. The contracts should also specify materials, length of warranty, and what it covers. The contractor may reserve the right to revise a job cost for unforeseen circumstances, such as wood rot or termite damage revealed when surface materials are removed. They should provide a written addendum or change order for any additional labor or materials.
You will mostly be asked to pay a percentage up front (a deposit), a percentage when materials are delivered, and the balance upon completion.
Make sure all proper permits are pulled before the work is started. Permits are not always required – this may vary by job type and city/county laws.
To ensure timely installation, make sure your job is properly scheduled. To ensure the highest quality of work, ask who will be supervising the job daily.
In order to be free of any liens, make sure your roofer offers you a material and labor lien release before final payment. Upon final payment, you should receive a manufacturer’s warranty signed, dated and authorized from the roofing contractor.
Finally, relax and enjoy your new roof!
Article courtesy of Shawn Preman, owner of Christian Roofing. For more information about Christian roofing, visit their website.