If you’ve been a homeowner for quite some time, you’ve probably hired a contractor to fix your roof. If you’re like most, you asked the common questions. Those being, how long have they been in business, do they have references, can you provide proof of insurance. But is there more to the process? If so, would you know where to go from there?
All Around believes it should be a thorough, in-depth process that includes multiple layers. Purchasing a new roof system is an important investment. Not only is it an important investment, but it’s also a costly one as well. Before you spend your money, spend some time researching roofing contractors in your area. If you’re like me and are always on the go, take a second to read this article and choose to make it your guide to “Picking The Right Roofing Contractor in Dayton, OH”
All roofing contractors are not alike. Remember, the price is only one layer. Keep a healthy skepticism about the lowest bid. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Professionalism and quality should also be layers to your decision-making process. Below are some topics and ideas, from personal experience, that will help you in your journey.
-Check for a permanent place of business, telephone number, tax I.D. number?
A permanent place of business shows stability. You know if a company is established at this point with some history to research. There’s also a good chance that they have some experience backing them. Moreover, they are organized enough and have a little bit of overhead.
Too much overhead will drive the price considerably higher, but a small amount of overhead takes some organization and staffing to manage correctly. There’s a good chance also that they have the equipment and means to accomplish the jobs they get. Possibly even a showroom for you to see multiple different products.
-Company Certifications, Insurance, Worker Compensation?
Insist on seeing copies of the contractor’s liability insurance and workers’ compensation certificates. Make sure the coverage is in effect through the duration of the job and covers roofing. A lot of contractors will label themselves under general construction to save money. Doing this might lead to the insurance company not covering certain issues if they arise.
-Does the roofing contractor have a solid BBB rating?
If they are a company that’s been busy for more than just a few years and plan on staying in business, there’s a good chance that they are listed in the Better Business Bureau.This along with any other platform they could have reviews on can give a lot of insight on how they do business. Moreover, what you can probably expect if they were to do your project.
Look for a company with a proven track record that readily offers client references and a list of completed projects. Call these clients to find out whether they were satisfied. If they have social media pages or a website, they should have reviews listed that you can go through and read.
-Are they certified in any roofing systems?
If quality is a focus for a company, the time is taken to get certified in the products they install. Specification manuals must be known to get them. They will give you the confidence that the install will last the life of their warranties and beyond.
-Do they have a training program for employees?
Along with certifications, employee training programs are something a lot of roofing companies overlook. In-house training is an important company policy, for installers and all staff. How do they make sure their crews are up to date on the frequent changes with install specifications for products?
What extra measures are put in place to assure you, the customer, that your roof is installed correctly. With the number of different areas pertaining to a roof install, a roofing company should hold training sessions once a month if not more often highlighting specific areas each session.
It is also beneficial to have an experienced field supervisor checking in on the crews throughout the workday and completing a final inspection at the end of the project. Have them explain what the project supervisor looks for and how they go about correcting work that doesn’t meet their standards of quality.
Request the name of the person who will be in charge, how many workers will be required, and the estimated time of completion. Make sure you are comfortable with the policies your roofing contractor implements with their crews.
-Insist on a written proposal and examine it for complete descriptions of the work and specifications, including approximate starting and completion dates and payment procedures.
-How do they project other areas of the exterior of a house?
Tearing off the existing shingles can be a messy process. A roofing company should have trained their crews to place the shingles being removed directly into the trash container minimizing what hits the ground. No matter the amount of tear-off that hits the ground or not, they should take extra measures to ensure no damage is done to other areas.
Tarps should be laid out for the trash to land on. OSB should be put against garage doors and on concrete walkways, and 2×4’s nailed at the bottom of the roof above flower beds. These are just a few common methods a good roofing contractor trains their crew.
-unforeseen or hidden charges?
The one “unforeseen” in a roof installation project is decking replacement. Without seeing the decking underneath the shingles, your estimate should have a line item stating a per pcs price separate from the total estimated price. You should always know upfront what they are charging for replacing one board.
The contractor should also have some sort of idea of the amount needing to be replaced by walking the roof during the estimating process. They won’t be able to give you an exact number but should be able to tell you if you’re looking at $100.00 or closer to $1,000.00. Have an honest conversation with your salesman about “unforeseen” issues. Every roof is different and unique in its own way.
-Warranties included in the estimate
Carefully read and understand any roofing warranty offered and watch for provisions that would void it. Each estimate should come with two warranties. One should be the workmanship warranties covering the install process. This warranty should cover every aspect written in the estimate. One must that a roofing contractor should offer with their roof replacement estimate is a workmanship warranty.
There isn’t a situation where that shouldn’t be included in your estimate. A written copy of that warranty should be provided as well for you to keep for your records. One thing many contractors don’t offer but should is a maintenance contract. A once-a-year inspection especially in the first year or two is a great preventive measure. You can catch potential leaks.
In conclusion, make sure the contractor you hire checks off most of these boxes. Be confident in your ability to make the right choice for your situation. If you do your homework and follow these tips, trust your gut feeling. Thanks for taking the time to read this article and good luck with, “Picking the Right Roofing Contractor” in Dayton, OH
All Around Roofing, Siding & Gutters
Fred White & Joel Hisle