In almost any state there are an overwhelming number of roofing companies to choose from. Roofing services are more profitable than other types of construction, so it does not require a large market share for a company to stay in business. This means that homeowners will have to do their due diligence when researching roofers to make sure they hire the best one for their project. For example, in south-central PA’s Hanover roofing contractors number in the hundreds, and some are much better than others. Also, different roofers have different specialties, experience and expertise. This article will provide you with a list of things to keep in mind when interviewing contractors so you can make the best hire possible for your project.
Verify Licensing, Insurance and Check Reviews and References
The bare minimum to expect from your contractor is for them to properly licensed and insured to offer roofing services in their state. The type of license required varies from state to state, so check with your local government. Most states have website directories with easy-to-use license checks. A contract from an improperly licensed or unlicensed roofer is null and void, so check carefully.
After you’ve narrowed down your list to only properly licensed and insured companies, make sure you check online reviews on platforms like Google Maps, Yelp, the BBB and even social media like Facebook. If a company has a bad record of poor service, you will be able to find it and steer clear of hiring them.
Inquire about Specialty Services and Expertise: Roof Replacement vs Repair, Metal Roofing, Insurance Claim Specialists, etc.
Roofing may seem pretty straight forward, but there are actually quite a few various specialties within the roofing category. For example, some roofers specialize in storm damage roofing restorations and can help you get your roof approved and paid for by insurance. Others might specialize in metal roofing, or might only offer full roof replacements rather than roof repair services. You can ask your contractor during the free estimate and roof inspection (most offer this) about what type of roofing project makes up the majority of their work. A specialized roofer will be more effective and efficient at providing that service, and it will therefore be more affordable for you to hire them. You can also find out by viewing photos of their roofing services on their website and on social media.
Compare the Details in the Estimates You Receive for Your Roofing Installation or Roof Replacement
A lot more goes into a roof replacement than just a layer of shingles or metal panels or tiles. A roof is a system of barriers that work together to protect your home from water, weather, ice, snow, etc. Unfortunately, some lower quality roofers will cut corners in order to increase profits: they’ll re-use the old underlayment, install new products over old, leave old flashings and gaskets untouched, and/or use lower quality materials. Make sure your contractor specifies a detailed scope of work and names the types and brands of materials that are to be used. Then, compare the scope of work and see which roofer is dedicated to higher quality work. That’s the one you probably want to go with.
Ask for and Compare Warranties: How long is your roof replacement guaranteed to last?
Most architectural asphalt shingle manufacturers provide decades-long limited “lifetime” warranties on their products, but these vary from manufacturer to manufacturer so do your research. There isn’t a huge difference in quality among the top four or five manufacturers like GAF, CertainTeed, Owens Corning and IKO but there are some differences in how warranties are applied. For example, IKO’s warrant is out-of-the-wrapper meaning it always applies so long as installation specifications are met. GAF on the other hand has a slightly longer warranty if it is registered by the factory-certified installer so long as 3 GAF-brand roofing components (like underlayment, ridge vent and ridge caps) are used. Details like this make a difference, and can be a big selling point when it comes time for you to move – the warranties are usually transferrable at least once.
In addition to manufacturer warranties, labor and workmanship ought to be guaranteed to meet or exceed installation specifications required by the manufacturer. You don’t want to miss out on the manufacturer warranty simply because of a mistake by your installer. The best roofers will stand behind their installation for the lifetime of the shingles warranty.
Same goes for metal roofing and flat rubber – these products ought to last decades, so ask your roofer to specify how long they will stand behind their product and what the process is if something should go wrong.
Hire a Roofing Company that You Feel Comfortable With
Finally, consider the personal style of the person with whom you meet for that initial estimate. How do they represent their company? Are they easy to get along with, or do they make you uncomfortable? Usually the salesman or estimator is also the project manager who will be your primary contact throughout the process. You want to make sure this person is easy to deal with, is committed to being responsive and proactive about meeting your needs, and is available and easy to get in touch with. Asking questions like this are important to find out whether or not the representatives of this company are able to meet your needs.
Hiring a roofing contractor is an important decision because you will rely on them to not only do quality work but to stand behind their service if anything goes wrong. It is not uncommon within the first year following an asphalt shingle roof replacement for shingles to get blown off while they are properly sealing. A good roofer will immediately come out and reinstall them. Things like this make it really crucial for you to spend some time researching your contractor to make sure they are the type of company you can trust, now and for decades to come.
Article Submitted By Community Writer