Questions To Ask When Finding A Reputable Roofing Company
Re-roofing is a process that most homeowners might not be familiar with until there is need to have their old roof replaced. And even with that, there is still a lot to learn from the right roofing products to use to the best procedures for achieving your roofing needs. For this reason, it is essential to know that you can count on the reputable roofing company you choose to advise on the products and procedures that might be new to you. The key is finding a reputable roofing company for the roofing job.
But what criteria will you use to decide whether a roofing contractor is a professional who will stand behind his work? It is always advisable that you evaluate your roofing contractor as carefully as would with a lawyer or doctor. That is why we have prepared this guide to finding a reputable roofing company.
1. Is The Company Insured?
Any roofing contractor should have workers’ compensation insurance and comprehensive liability insurance to protect the homeowner in case an accident occurs during the reroofing process. You can verify this by asking to view the contractor’s certificates of insurance. Concerning this, it is important to let the roofing contractor know that you will need to see the certificates before they can get started with their roofing job. Some contractors will also have other types of insurance, such as auto, life, and health insurance.
Worker accidents. You must always be aware that if one of the roofing workers is injured on your property, you will most likely be held liable for all costs involved unless the roofing company is insured. Hospital bills for a serious fall could be extraordinarily expensive.
Uninsured Contractors. Roofers who have no insurance coverage for their employees will probably be cheaper to hire since they don’t have hefty insurance premiums to pay. Comprehensive liability premiums could increase the wage costs from as low as 20% to 80% depending on the state.
2. Is The Company a Credentialed or Licensed Contractor?
When asking this question, you are basically inquiring whether the roofing company is licensed by your city or state. Not all states require roofing contractors to have a form of accreditation. If your state requires that roofing contractors be licensed, the chances are that they had to pass a written examination in their specialty, although very few licenses make this a mandatory requirement. Several cities will need professional licensing so be sure to inquire with the local licensing authority.
A roofing contractor could choose to answer this question by showing you his business license. However, this kind of permit might not be directly relevant to the company’s competence since it is often a tax requirement.
3. How Long Has The Contractor Been Operational?
Needless to say, the longer, the better. Under two years could indicate an unstable company or one that is still low on the learning curve.
On the flip side, we all have to start from somewhere. References are always useful if you want to double check any roofing company, and are particularly vital when you are dealing with a new contractor. While a newer company might have a bright future, it is just reasonable to be more cautious when considering its referrals. The failure rate of most roofing contractors in the first two years is often very high.
4. Will The Contractor Provide Referrals?
When it comes to finding a reputable roofing company, you should not take any chances with their previous roofing jobs. It is therefore crucial that you ask a roofing company for any referrals they can provide. You could ask for photos of their completed work. However, you should always bear in mind that not many roofers will have any pictures and when that is the case, you can ask for a list of 8 to 10 names and contacts of their most recent customers, preferably the last 12 months. While it is not necessary that you check all the contacts they provide, you can randomly pick a few and call for inquiries.
5. What’s the Contractor’s Workmanship Warranty?
Usually, roofing company workmanship warranties are for 12 months or more. Warranties longer than 12 months are not particularly more valuable than their shorter counterparts. This is because the warranty length is not as important as the contractor’s ability and intent to stand behind their warranty. The workmanship warranty is easily gauged using client referrals. When contacting previous customers for referrals, ask details about these four aspects:
• Did the company do the roofing job on a timely basis?
• Did the contractor act as if he cared about his customer’s interests?
• Was the company responsive when asked for changes or information?
• Would you call the contractor trustworthy?
While a roofer will probably warrant his workmanship, it is important to note that roofing product manufacturers will also provide warranties for the roofing material. This means that two warranties are going to cover a single roof system so be sure to understand them both.
6. What is the Company’s Track Record?
For quality assurance purposes when finding a reputable roofing company, it is vital that you look into the contractor’s track record for solving their client’s complaints. You could try to find out how the company deals with problems when they arise. Concerning this, you could ask for a referral from a job that involved a complaint.
• Ask your contractor whether they have ever lost any job-related court case.
• Inquire if the contractor’s license has even been suspended and for what reason.
You could also talk to appropriate authorities to inquire whether there have been any complaints filed against the contractors you are interviewing. Most contractors who have been in business for long will probably have been involved in a dispute so inquire how it was resolved.
7. What’s the Company’s Full Name and Address?
When looking for a reputable roofing contractor, it is vital that you seek to verify the company’s complete address. This is particularly important if you want to determine the company’s operating hours. And if a post office box is given, it is advisable that you ask for the full street address as well.