It’s important to avoid judging a book by its cover. While snazzy advertising may attract you to a certain roofer, there is more to consider than just their website or ads.
Signs of a Reputable Roofing Company
When you know what to look for, you can easily find a reputable roofing company or roofer who will provide you with quality work at a reasonable price. Here are some tips on what you should look for.
Manufacturer Certifications and Credentials
The best roofers will take the time to become certified with different manufacturers. This is your assurance that they are knowledgeable about product installation requirements. Memberships with different associations are also important. Reputable roofers will take the time to join the Better Business Bureau, the National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA), state roofing associations or other groups. As a member of these groups, they will remain current on the most recent trends, industry improvements and other important information.
Prompt and Professional
Hiring a roofer is a lot like conducting a job interview. Would you arrive late for a potential job? You should have the same expectations of the roofer. All company representatives should be professional and treat you with respect. Expect them to do a thorough inspection, including looking in the attic and walking around the roof. When they provide you with an estimate, it should be easy to understand.
Licensed and Insured
It’s important to choose a company that is licensed and insured. Workers compensation insurance protects their workers in the event of an accident, and reputable roofers will have this protection for their team. Most states require contractors to have a license before they start working professionally on jobs. There are penalties imposed in some areas if contractors try to cut corners and operate without a valid license.
The license provides you with some assurance that the contractor is adhering to local building codes and providing a quality service. Most contractors don’t want to risk their license by performing shoddy work, so it’s important to ask to see the license before hiring a contractor. You won’t have to ask for it with most reputable contractors because they will have the information openly displayed in their place of business.
Go with your Gut
While you are going through the process of interviewing roofers, you are going to have gut feelings about different people. You may feel like one team is more professional than another, or there may be a contractor who just seems a little “off” to you. It’s important to listen to your gut and ask more questions. Be willing to pass on a lower bid if you have an uneasy feeling about the contractor.
Do you ever wonder how you can really know whether a roofer is following building codes and providing you with quality work? One way is to educate yourself. Take the time to call your local building department to find out what the building codes are and what you might want to watch for. When the contractor arrives, ask questions to determine if they are following that code.
If your area requires drip guards, you might ask what brand drip guards the contractor uses. If the contractor gives you a story about how they aren’t necessary or tries to avoid the question, then you will know that it’s time to dismiss that contractor and call another one.
No one wants to take the time to call on references, but they are important. You may think that it’s easy for a contractor to make up references, but most people won’t call and actually ask questions. It’s a huge red flag when a roofer cannot provide you with a list of satisfied customers.
In addition to asking for references from a contractor you are considering, you can also ask for references from your neighbors and friends who have invested in a new roof. Ask them why they would or would not recommend any particular roofer, and that will help you find the right company for your project.
When you are hiring a roofer, remember that the lowest bidder is not always the best. Cheap work that comes with a cheap price will only cost you more in the long run as you have to invest in repairs, and the roof fails prematurely. Your roof is a major investment, so you should take the time to carefully contractors and choose a reputable team.