How to find the best roofer for your job
Home owners really need to do some solid research prior to hiring a roofing contractor. Probably the best place for this is the Internet. There are many excellent sites on-line where you can look at reviews of local roofing professionals, and contractors in your area to see if they are accredited to install roofs. You can check their reputation before you start making calls. Its easy to search by city or by zip code.
As a homeowner you really need to take the precaution of protecting yourself from the handful of unscrupulous roofing contractors who operate illegally and are not licensed. It’s your job as a home owner to ensure that a contractors insurance is in order before you hire any type of roofer. In some states a permit is required to install a new roof. This has to be obtained from the city. In order to pull the permit the contractor will need to be licensed.
Another obvious means of finding a reliable roofing contractor is to ask your friends and neighbours if they can recommend someone. Find out what kind of experience they had with their contractor… what were their pros and cons? It is not always a good idea to hire someone who you might consider a friend to do the work unless you have a very clear understanding of their capabilities. If for any reason the contract goes wrong you can find yourself in a difficult position with that person and it can become a nightmare finding a resolution to the disagreement.
Once you have compiled a shortlist of possible candidates it is then a good idea to check to see if they are registered with the Better Business Bureau. Again check to see it the have good testimonials from previous customers. If possible, speak to those homeowners and go to some of the properties they have worked on and personally inspect their craftsmanship to see if you approve of their standards.
As soon as you have refined your list of contenders, give each company a call and get a feel for how they are on the phone… are they easy to communicate with, are they good listeners, are they respectful? Its important to follow your gut instances at this point, as it will save a bunch of time as you move towards the next step, which is to get several contractors to come to your property to inspect your roof and give a quote.
Be very clear about the work that is being quoted. Be specific about the types of materials to be used, the process that the roofer will employ as well as time frame for the job. Be very clear about contingencies for bad weather…. (you don’t want the rain to come through your ceiling whilst they are stripping your roof) Get everything written into a contract that you are satisfied with. Remember if something goes horribly wrong and you have to go to court, you will need solid documentation to back up your case.
One of the most important parts in the contract is your payment schedule, it is not unheard of to have to make a preliminary payment to get the project started. This may require an initial payment of about 30 % and a lot of roofing specialists do require a deposit, and this is why it’s so important to see to it that you dealing with a qualified roofing contractor that has finished some jobs in your area.
One more item you will need to have in the agreement is the time framework. When you make the deposit and sign the agreement you will want to know when the job will start and when it ought to be completed. Typically a re-roof will take between 2 days to 4 days to complete, depending on the size and accessibility of the roof. More challenging projects will take longer.
I hope these suggestions will certainly help you hiring a roofing contractor. One helpful tip is to ask your roofer if he would take photos throughout the duration of the job and e-mail them to you for your peace of mind and for documentation.