12 Steps to Choosing a Quality Roofing Company
There are lots of roofing companies out there vying for your business, and with the arrival of spring storms, roofing company sales reps will be knocking on your door every chance they get. But with new roofs costing thousands, and even tens of thousands of dollars, it’s important to do a little homework before you hire just anyone eager to do the job.
You want to know that your money (whether it’s coming directly from your wallet or from your insurance policy) is being spent wisely, and that the all-important job of putting a roof over your head is being handled by true professionals who are dedicated to producing quality work that will perform for you reliably for many years to come. A new roof is a real investment, and if you don’t make a wise decision in choosing a roofing company initially, you could be spending a lot more in money and aggravation down the road when that investment begins to fail you.
So how do you find a quality roofing company you can depend on to do the job right the first time? Follow this checklist, based on recommendations from the National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA), and you’ll be well on your way.
- Get a detailed estimate, complete with specifications of the work to be done, dates for the start and completion of the job, and payment procedures from any roofing contractor you’re considering hiring.
- Ask about, read and compare roofing warranties from all contractors being considered. Study all the fine print and make sure you clearly understand all provisions that would make each warranty null and void.
- Ask to see the contractor’s financial records to ensure stability. Remember that a roof is an investment, and you don’t want to risk hiring a company that looks like it could be out of business long before your warranty expires.
- Ensure that every roofing contractor you speak with has a permanent business address and telephone number, along with a business license and tax ID number.
- Verify the roofing contractor’s liability and workers’ compensation insurance. Get copies of the contractor’s insurance certificates and call the insurance company or companies to confirm the coverage amounts. Make sure that premiums are up to date so that coverage is effective while the work is being done on your home.
- Check with the Better Business Bureau to see if any complaints have been filed against any roofing contractor you’re considering hiring.
- Ask if your prospective contractor is a member of any national or regional industry associations like the NRCA, and verify that the contractor’s membership is current with the association. Association memberships indicate a commitment to professionalism and often, ongoing education, on the part of the contractor.
- Since specific application expertise is required to attain maximum performance from roofing applications, roofing manufacturers often train, license or otherwise approve contractors to install their products. Find out which manufacturers have named your prospective contractor a licensed, preferred or approved installer.
- Because roofing contractors are only as good as the crews they hire, ensure that all crew members of every roofing company you’re considering hiring are educated on manufacturer installation methods, as well. Inquire about any industry education and safety training programs workers have attended, too, for further proof of a contractor’s commitment to professionalism.
- Get the name of the person who will be the on-site supervisor for the duration of your roof installation and find out how many crew members will be working on the job. Ask about quality control measures that will be taken during each phase of the project.
- Check your local resources for reviews and recommendations from previous customers of any roofing contractor you’re considering. Ask for client references and call the references to verify that they were happy with the work done by the contractor.
- Don’t let price be your primary deciding factor. Remember that your roof is a long-term investment, and cutting corners can cost you down the road. Follow the checklist above and consider all of your findings carefully before you put your home in someone else’s hands.