Five Questions to Ask Your Roofing ContractorApr 16th, 2012
If you need to have your roof fixed, you're about to make as big a repair investment as may ever be required on your home. We're talking several thousands of dollars and something that you hope will last for a few decades or longer.
- What’s the contractor’s availability? Getting a roof fixed is usually a high priority job. If you’ve got water coming into your house, it needs fixed yesterday! Make sure the contractor has room for you when you need him. Especially if there’s been a storm in the area, he may be booked solid. Be sure to ask so that you’re not stuck two months praying for that blue tarp on your roof not to blow away.
- How long has your contractor been in business? Roofing is a pretty easy career to get into. Got a ladder, a truck and a hammer? You’re good to go. That means not every roofer out there will be of good quality. It’s a word of mouth business and the ones that aren’t any good generally don’t stay in business very long. Find out how long your contractor has been around. If he’s been working at this longer than five years, chances are he’s pretty good. On that note...
- Ask for a couple of addresses so you can check out past jobs. There’s nothing like looking at the roofer’s work with your own eyes. Ask him to supply you with a couple of references, then drive out and take a look. If possible, talk to the homeowners and ask about the contractor’s professionalism and timeliness.
- Does your contractor carry liability insurance and worker’s compensation coverage? Chances are your roofer has a crew. What happens when one of his crew takes a wrong step and falls off the ladder? If the contractor carries liability and worker’s compensation, then nothing to you. If not, the accident occurred on your property and you’re wide open to litigation. And you thought the roof was expensive!
- Does your contractor offer a warranty? He should, if his work is any good. At the very least roofing contractors should offer a year’s warranty on any defective product or work. If they’re really good, they’ll give you up to three years. That could be worth its weight in gold if the roofer got a bad pallet of shingles or one of his men forgot to put enough nails down.