Finding a qualified roofer can be difficult. Determining the roofing products and services you’ll need is even tougher. Therefore, it is vital for a homeowner to know how to go about finding a roofer they can trust and one that can get the job done right.
It is always a good idea to interview two or three different roofing companies and weigh the pros and cons of each. Make sure you are comparing apples to apples and then select the roofer that you feel the most comfortable with. Remember that choosing the cheapest contractor isn’t always the best option. Price does not indicate the level of experience, reliability, skill, honesty, or stability that a quality roofing contractor will have. Price only measures the cost of the job.
One of the best ways to find your 3 prospective roofing contractors is to ask your neighbors and friends. In many cases, they can give you recommendations on competent roofers as well as roofers to avoid. The Yellow Pages, Angie’s List, and Service Magic also have great contractor resources. Here are a few of the most important 21 questions to ask a prospective roofing company. It also may be a good idea to print this page for future reference.
1. How long has your roofing company been in business?
Asking a roofing company how long they have been in business can help you gauge their experience level and stability. A company that has been in business for a long time may have a proven track record of successfully completing roofing projects and may have established relationships with suppliers and contractors. On the other hand, a newer company may be more innovative and potentially more cost-effective, but may also have less experience and potentially less established processes.
In general, it’s important to consider a company’s experience level when choosing a roofing contractor, as roofing projects can be complex and require specialized knowledge and skill. A more experienced company may be better equipped to handle unexpected issues that may arise during a project, and may also be more likely to complete the work to a high standard. It’s also worth noting that a company’s length of time in business is not the only factor to consider when choosing a roofing contractor. It’s important to also consider the company’s reputation, the quality of their work, and their overall approach to customer service.
2. Where are you located? Physical location?
Asking a roofing company about their physical location can help you determine if they are able to serve your area. In addition to considering the company’s physical location, you may also want to ask if they have a permanent office or showroom that you can visit. This can give you the opportunity to meet with the company in person, ask questions, and get a feel for their business operations. In addition, some less notable roofing companies use their home address as their physical location.
3. Do you recommend a complete re-roof or just a repair?
Asking a roofing company whether they recommend a complete re-roof or just a repair can help you understand their assessment of the condition of your roof and their recommended course of action. There are a few factors that can influence whether a complete re-roof or just a repair is the best option. These can include the age of the roof, the extent of any damage or wear, the type of roofing material, and the overall condition of the roof.
A complete re-roof may be necessary if the roof is very old or if it has sustained significant damage that cannot be repaired. A complete re-roof involves removing the old roofing material and installing a new roof. This can be a more extensive and costly project, but it can also provide a longer-lasting solution and can improve the overall appearance and value of the property. On the other hand, if the roof is relatively new or if the damage is limited to a small area, a repair may be sufficient. A repair involves fixing the specific area of damage and may be a more cost-effective solution.
4. Does your roofing company carry insurance? General liability and workman’s compensation?
Asking a roofing company about their insurance is an important step in the process of choosing a contractor. Having insurance can protect both you and the roofing company in case of any accidents or injuries that may occur during the project. There are two main types of insurance that you should ask about: general liability insurance and workers’ compensation coverage.
General liability insurance covers damages or injuries that may occur as a result of the company’s work. This can include damage to the property, injuries to third parties, or legal fees if the company is sued. Having general liability insurance can provide peace of mind and can protect you from financial responsibility in case of any accidents or incidents.
Workers’ compensation insurance covers medical expenses and lost wages for employees who are injured on the job. This is important for protecting the employees of the roofing company and can also protect you as the homeowner from any potential liability.
It’s important to make sure that the roofing company you choose has both types of insurance, as this can help ensure that everyone is protected in case of any accidents or injuries that may occur during the project.
5. Is your roofing company licensed to operate in this state?
Asking a roofing company whether they are licensed to operate in the state where you live is an important step in the process of choosing a contractor. In many states, roofing contractors are required to hold a license in order to operate legally. A license is typically issued by the state government and serves as a way to ensure that contractors meet certain standards of knowledge and professionalism.
6. Does your roofing company pull permits?
Asking a roofing company whether they pull permits can help you understand their approach to following building codes and regulations. In most cases, roofing projects will require building permits, which are issued by the local government to ensure that construction projects meet certain standards and regulations. Obtaining a permit can involve submitting plans, paying fees, and potentially undergoing inspections. In general, it’s important to choose a roofing company that follows all necessary building codes and regulations and takes the necessary steps to obtain the necessary permits. This can help ensure that the project is completed safely and to a high standard.
7. Can you provide references from satisfied customers?
Asking a roofing company for references from satisfied customers is a good way to get a sense of the company’s work quality and customer service. Talking to past customers can give you valuable insights into what it’s like to work with the company and can help you make an informed decision about whether to hire them. Getting references from satisfied customers can be a valuable way to learn more about a roofing company and can help you make an informed decision about whether to hire them.
8. What is your roofing warranty? Manufacturer’s warranty?
Asking a roofing company about their warranty is a good way to understand the level of protection you will have in case of any issues with the roofing work. There are two main types of warranties to consider: the roofing company’s own warranty and the manufacturer’s warranty.
The roofing company’s own warranty covers workmanship errors and other issues that may arise as a result of the company’s work. This type of warranty can provide protection in case of any problems with the roofing work and can give you peace of mind knowing that the company stands behind their work.
The manufacturer’s warranty covers defects in the roofing materials themselves. This type of warranty is typically provided by the manufacturer of the roofing materials and can provide protection in case of any issues with the materials.
It’s important to understand the terms of any warranties offered by the roofing company, including what is covered, how long the warranty lasts, and what the process is for making a claim. This can help you understand the level of protection you will have in case of any issues with the roofing work and can help you make an informed decision about which company to hire.
9. Is your roofing company certified by the manufacturer to install their products?
Asking a roofing company whether they are certified by the manufacturer to install their products is a good way to understand the level of expertise and knowledge the company has. Manufacturer certification typically involves training and testing by the manufacturer to ensure that contractors have the necessary skills and knowledge to install their products correctly. This can include training on proper installation techniques, product features and benefits, and any necessary safety precautions.
10. Are you listed with the BBB? And if so what is your rating?
Asking a roofing company whether they are listed with the BBB and what their rating is can be a good way to get a sense of the company’s reputation and how they handle customer complaints. If a company is listed with the BBB, they will have a rating that reflects their level of customer satisfaction. Overall, checking a company’s BBB rating can be a helpful way to get a sense of their reputation and how they handle customer complaints, but it’s important to consider other factors as well when choosing a roofing company.
11. When is payment required? Before or After the roof is installed or repaired?
Asking a roofing company about their payment policies is an important step in the process of choosing a contractor. It’s important to understand when payment is required and how the company prefers to receive payment in order to avoid any misunderstandings or issues.
Payment installments are often the most popular. The first payment when you sign the contract, the second when the materials are delivered, and the final payment upon completion. It’s important to understand the payment policies of the roofing company you are considering and to make sure that the terms are clear and agreed upon before the project begins. This can help ensure that there are no misunderstandings.
12. Will you provide a firm written contract?
Asking a roofing company whether they will provide a written contract is an important step in the process of choosing a contractor. A written contract is a legally binding document that outlines the terms of the project, including the scope of work, materials to be used, payment terms, and any other relevant details. There are a few benefits to having a written contract:
Protection: A written contract can provide protection for both the homeowner and the roofing company. It can help ensure that both parties understand their rights and responsibilities and can provide a way to resolve any disputes that may arise.
Clarity: A written contract can help clarify the terms of the project and can prevent misunderstandings about what is expected. This can help ensure that the project is completed to the homeowner’s satisfaction.
Legal recourse: In the event of a dispute, a written contract can provide a basis for legal action if necessary.
Overall, it’s important to choose a roofing company that is willing to provide a written contract and to make sure that the contract is thorough and covers all relevant details of the project. This can help ensure that the project is completed to your satisfaction and can provide protection in case of any issues that may arise.
13. Will you use subcontractors for any part of the roofing process?
Asking a roofing company whether they will use subcontractors for any part of the roofing process can help you understand who will be working on your project and how the work will be divided. Subcontractors are independent contractors who are hired by a main contractor (in this case, the roofing company) to perform specific tasks or services. Subcontractors can be used for a variety of purposes, such as the tearing away of the old roof.
Quality of work is usually the most important to ensure that any subcontractors used by the roofing company are qualified and capable of completing the work to a high standard. You may want to ask the roofing company how they select and manage their subcontractors to get a sense of their processes.
14. Are you members of the NRCA (National Roofing Contractors Association)?
Asking a roofing company whether they are members of the National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA) can be a good way to get a sense of the company’s commitment to quality and professionalism.
The NRCA is a professional trade association for the roofing industry. It is dedicated to advancing the roofing industry and promoting best practices among roofing contractors. In order to be a member of the NRCA, a company must meet certain standards of professionalism and experience.
15. What is your policy for waste removal and cleanup?
Asking a roofing company about their policy for waste removal and cleanup is an important step in the process of choosing a contractor. It’s important to understand how the company will handle the removal of any debris and materials generated during the roofing project and how they will ensure that the job site is left clean and tidy. Overall, it’s important to choose a roofing company that has a clear and thorough policy for waste removal and cleanup and that takes steps to ensure that the job site is left clean and safe.
16. Will the owner or foreman of the roofing company be present during working hours?
Asking a roofing company whether the owner or foreman will be present during working hours can be a good way to understand the level of oversight and supervision on the job site. The owner or foreman of a company is often an experienced and knowledgeable member of the team. Having them present on the job site can provide a level of oversight and expertise that can help ensure that the project is completed to a high standard. Overall, it can be beneficial to choose a roofing company that has the owner or foreman present on the job site during working hours, as this can provide a level of oversight and expertise that can help ensure the project is completed to a high standard.
17. How much does your company charge for replacement boards?
The cost of replacing boards on a roof can vary depending on a number of factors, including the type of wood being used, the size of the boards, and the location of the job. It’s important to ask a roofing company about their specific rates for replacing boards in order to get an accurate estimate for the cost of the project. When asking about the cost of replacing boards, you may want to consider the type of wood, size of the boards, quantity of boards, and location of the boards. Overall, it’s important to get a detailed estimate from the roofing company and to understand the factors that are influencing the cost of replacing boards in order to get an accurate picture of the total cost of the project.
18. Is the new roof Energy Star compliant. if so, am I eligible for a tax rebate?
Energy Star is a voluntary program run by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that aims to promote energy efficiency and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Many roofing products, including roofing shingles and roof coatings, can be Energy Star certified if they meet certain energy efficiency criteria. If a roofing company installs an Energy Star certified roof on your home, you may be eligible for a tax rebate or other incentives. These incentives can vary depending on the specific product being installed and the location of the job.
19. When can you get started and how long will it take?
Asking a roofing company about their availability and the estimated timeline for the project is an important step in the process of choosing a contractor. It’s important to understand when the company can get started and how long they expect the project to take in order to plan your schedule and ensure that the project fits within your timeframe. You should consider the start date, duration, and weather. Overall, it’s important to choose a roofing company that can meet your timeline and to make sure that the timeline for the project is clear and agreed upon before work begins. This can help ensure that the project is completed on schedule and without any unexpected delays.
20. How should the roof be maintained when you have finished the job?
Asking a roofing company about their recommendations for maintaining the roof after the job is completed is an important step in the process of choosing a contractor. It’s important to understand how to care for your roof in order to extend its lifespan and prevent any potential issues. It’s important to choose a roofing company that provides clear guidance on how to maintain the roof and that is available to provide ongoing maintenance or repairs if needed. This can help ensure that your roof stays in good condition and lasts as long as possible.
21. Is there any pending legal action against your roofing company?
If a company is facing legal action, it’s important to understand the details of the case and the potential implications for your project. You may want to ask the roofing company about the nature of the legal action and how they are responding to it. It’s also a good idea to do your own research and to check with relevant regulatory agencies or organizations to see if there are any additional concerns about the company’s business practices or reputation.
Most quality roofers, with experience, won’t have any problems answering any of these questions and many will even have the information and documentation ready for you during their visit.