Recently a local homeowner was left with a “rainforest” in his living room, all from having his roof replaced. The homeowner needed a kiddie pool to catch the falling ceiling and rainwater. According to News 2, the company that had replaced the homeowner’s roof had false email and physical addresses and would not return phone calls.
Local roofer, Chris Harper says having that license means the contractor passed a background, a credit check, and has solid references. He also said having a physical address and website helps legitimize companies on some level.
Harper says before hiring a contractor, ask these questions:
- What materials will they use?
- What sort of insurance coverage do they offer?
- How does the company handle gutters and other components of the roof?
- What wind speed can the roof withstand?
Another local contractor recommends that homeowners secure three separate quotes and compare their quotes. Homeowners need to educate themselves on the scope of their roofing work.
According to angieslist.com, these are Six Tips For Choosing A Roofing Contractor:
- INSURANCE: Checking to see that your contractor has valid worker’s compensation and liability insurance is a must. Don’t take their word for it; ask to see their certificates or even call the insurance carrier to confirm.
- LOCAL COMPANY: Choose a company that is local, and has an established business address. A five-year warranty on a roof is worthless if the company moves or vanishes. Check the company’s references and reputation in the community.
- PRICING: Using the lowest price quoted as your sole criteria can be a mistake. In many cases, you get what you pay for, and homeowners may end up spending more money to repair problems which might have been covered under a reputable company’s workmanship guarantee. Competent roofing contractors with skilled workers and proper insurance have to maintain pricing to cover this overhead.
- STORM CHASERS: Avoid storm chasers. These “we’re in your neighborhood” canvassing and selling roofers may try to convince you that you have storm damage and want a signed letter of intent. Always wait to see the contracts and look for a referral from a satisfied client in the area. Check to see if they are operating under the proper local licensing and and permitting laws.
- DETAILS IN WRITING: In the case of having a roof replaced, the devil is in the details. You are the homeowner and should maintain control. Before paying, make sure you are satisfied with the completed work. The terms of payment should have been set prior to the start of work and agreed upon by both parties. This should include job duration, size of crew, correct materials, properly vented attic space, and clean up.
- COMMUNICATION: A reputable roofing contractor will return calls in a timely manner, will send documentation when asked, and will follow through on details. If this is not happening, contact the company representative with your concerns. Don’t be afraid to walk away if your concerns are not addressed in a satisfactory manner.
Finding the best roofing contractor can be challenging and time-consuming. However, you will save time, money, and headaches by taking the time to follow these steps. You can then feel confident in your decision.