Choosing a roofing contractor can be daunting with all the options and decisions to make. Do you go with a general contractor or a specialist? What about materials, styles, and colours? Or do you just hire someone based on word-of-mouth referrals from friends and family? The breadth of choices is mind-boggling! If you’re not sure where to start or what questions to ask as you shop around for your perfect roofer, here are 10 important factors to consider before making an appointment:
1. Roof type
There are three main types of roofs: asphalt shingle, tile roofs, and metal roofs. Each has its pros/cons so it’s best that you know which one is right for your home before picking a contractor. If you’re not sure which type is suitable for your home, do some research or ask an expert to help you narrow down the options.
2. Color and style of roof
You may want a certain colour and style for your roof but make sure that it blends well with the building itself and neighbouring buildings if they are visible from the street (such as apartment buildings or other homes). You wouldn’t want to paint your house green and install red tile roofing on it if the whole neighbourhood has orange roofs! There should be some sort of harmony throughout the area so you don’t stick out like a sore thumb. Can someone say “ugly duckling”?!? By choosing wisely, you can avoid that embarrassing situation.
3. Roofing materials
There are a few factors to consider when choosing roofing materials: durability, the ability of the material to weather different types of weather conditions, and cost. Since roofers have been in the business for a long time, you can trust that they know what’s best for your area. Research if you need to then get 3-5 quotes from various roofing contractors so you know competitor pricing before making a final decision.
4. Type of warranty
As with any product, you should opt for warranties because they will protect your home and also guard against shoddy workmanship. But make sure that the warranty is transferable to a new owner if ever you decide to sell your home later on (homes with roofs that are near the end of their lifespan usually sell for less than those who don’t). Also, check if there is a deductible associated with it and what is covered under the warranty plans (usually only materials and labour or possibly damaged due to bad weather as well).
5. Employer reputation
It’s important to check out their previous jobs and testimonials to see if the contractor is reputable and would provide good service. You should also check out their license and insurance (liability and workers’ compensation) as this will ensure that your money will be used properly and not go down the drain. But don’t forget to consider word-of-mouth referrals from family members/friends who may have already worked with them because those are usually the best references!
6. Company reliability
It’s always good to check if they’re just a one-man show or if they have a big team of experts ready to help you solve your roofing woes. The bigger companies may cost more but it’s worth it because they can handle problems more efficiently than, less professional ones. It’s also nice to see that they have offices in your area so if you need help with something, there will be someone nearby to assist you.
7. Warranties for materials/parts used
Always check the warranty on the parts and materials (the company should provide it) because these can be costly. If there are no warranties, find out why not or else get quotes from other contractors who do offer them. This is especially important if anything goes wrong—you wouldn’t want to suffer any losses due to faulty workmanship!
8. Insurance policies
Some companies offer insurance packages for their customers while others do not unless you ask them about it during your initial discussions or when making a bid proposal. You may want to ask your contractor about the insurance that they have and if there is a deductible for each policy. You can also check out the company’s reputation in terms of insurance…are they reliable? Some companies may not carry any at all but maybe you don’t really care one way or another, which is fine. It would just be nice to know in case of problems occur in the future so you can contact them and get it sorted out easily.
9. Ability to complete the job on time
You wouldn’t want to wait for months before your roof is fixed so make sure that they are able to finish your project within the projected timeframe given by the contractor. This will depend on how many other projects they have at hand so find out what you need to do in order to make sure that they prioritize your project. If you get along well with them, it’d be easy for you to sort out the specifics so they can get started ASAP if needed!
10. Contact information
Make sure that you have all of their contact details, especially their business address and phone numbers so you can get in touch whenever issues arise or just to ask questions/clarify things that haven’t been covered yet. A good contractor should always be open about everything that’s involved in the process even before signing any agreements, so don’t feel shy to ask anything at all—just do it politely though!
11. Local presence
It’s nice to check if there are offices located nearby because this would mean that if any problems come up, the issue can be resolved quickly and easily. For example, it would be better to have a nearby office than having to contact them all the way from the US just because something went wrong with your roof!
A good contractor should always provide you with references so ask for them and check out what previous customers have to say about their services. You can also use this as leverage during negotiations if the bid is quite steep…just try to negotiate until you reach an agreement that’s both reasonable and affordable since these two things work hand in hand! Always go through the contract carefully before signing anything, especially if there are lots of details involved. Just make sure that everything is clearly stated on paper so you can feel safe and secure throughout the whole process. If you need help, ask your friends/family members to give their input as well because your contractor might not be open about certain details if they’re considered ‘unpleasant’ or negative.
13. Home warranties
Some contractors may offer home warranty plans for new roofs but always check first before making any decisions on whether you should avail of this service. Make sure that you understand what’s covered by the warranty, how long it lasts for, etc…so check everything beforehand!