10 Things to Look For in a Roofer
Not long after a storm hits, your front door will be covered in business cards and flyers from countless roofing companies soliciting your business. The task of finding the right roofer can feel too big to handle if you don’t know what to look for. Below is a list of 10 things to keep in mind when looking for the best roofer for your project.
1. Solid Reviews
When researching a company, you should always start with their online reviews. Not only do you want to see a majority of 5-star ratings, but you also want to see responses from the company when customer’s leave a poor review. If a company doesn’t take the time to respond to their online reviews, that’s a good indicator that they may not take the time to make things right with their customers if something goes wrong. Every company is going to have a few bad reviews from time to time. It’s what they do about those reviews that counts.
2. Proper Licenses and Insurance
In most states and municipalities, a license is required to do roofing. Before signing a contract with a roofing company, ask to see copies of their roofing license that allows them to work in your area. The risk you take in hiring someone without a license can mean having no warranty if something goes wrong. Unlicensed roofers can’t pull permits, so you will not have the protection of the city conducting an inspection to make sure all work has been done to the current building codes. Also, the responsible party for penalties accrued for un-permitted work is you, the homeowner.
Equally as important as a license is the company’s general liability insurance. When interviewing a prospective roofer, always ask to see copies of their general liability policy to make sure it’s current.
3. Follows OSHA Safety Standards
When working in construction, accidents sometimes happen. It’s impossible be 100% perfect on every single job site, but your contractor should be able to demonstrate strong safety practices that align with OSHA’s safety requirements. Examples of such practices are conducting safety meetings with the whole crew at the start of each day, crew members wearing safety harnesses, and having a site supervisor to make sure everyone is safe.
4. Doesn’t Offer to “Eat Your Deductible”
Roofers who solicit your business by telling you that you don’t need to pay your deductible are asking you to commit insurance fraud. It is illegal for a homeowner to not pay their deductible, so you should always be skeptical of roofers who tell you otherwise. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
5. Uses Quality Materials
You know you have found a good roofer when the manufacturer of the products they use recognizes them as a top-tier contractor. Every manufacturer has a different name for their highest level of recognition, but they are all a great attribute to look for. When a contractor has reached the highest level of recognition, it means they have proven quality craftsmanship on numerous projects. Manufacturers will often extend more elite warranties to customers of that level of roofing companies because they have confidence in the workmanship. Ask your roofer what materials they use and if they have received any recognition for their workmanship.
6. Offers Workmanship Warranties
The industry standard workmanship warranty is 5 years. If your contractor doesn’t offer any type of workmanship warranty, you should never sign a contract with them. The warranty offered on the materials does not cover poor workmanship, so always ask what your roofing company’s workmanship warranty is.
7. Uses Technology
Is your prospective roofer is hand-drawing the dimensions of your roof, you may want to rethink signing that contract. There is so much technology available today that eliminates human error from the equation. Satellite imagery can do all of the measurements on your roof, and estimates can be quickly calculated using software specially designed for construction. An added bonus for any company is the use of iPads, or other tablets, for their pitch books so they can send you all of their documents in a digital format if you ask.
8. Gives Clear Estimates
Supplying you with a clear, concise estimate is not a difficult thing for a contractor who knows what he or she is doing. The estimate they give you should detail every material and type of labor required to complete your project. Every line item should also have a dollar amount with it so there are no surprises upon completion.
9. Has Strong Partnerships
Companies don’t typically like to attach their names to other companies with a bad reputation. When you research potential roofers, always look to see what affiliations it has to other organizations in your community. Does it give back to nonprofit organizations? Does the Better Business Bureau give it an A+ rating? These details are very important when you are trying to learn the morals of the company you want to hire.
10. Uses Quality Materials
Always ask what materials your roofer is planning to use on your home. Some contractors try to cut corners by using low-quality products so they can make a higher profit. Make sure you verify that the products they are using are at least the same quality as the products you already have on your roof.
Finding a reputable contractor can be challenging, but Elo Restoration can make the search easier. We are an Owens Corning Platinum Preferred Contractor. We are partnered with Susan G Komen in Florida and Colorado, and also partnered with Habitat for Humanity in Jacksonville and Metro Denver. Elo is proud to offer comprehensive estimates, as well as transparent inspection reports, which are sent to your email within 24 hours. Our crews follow very strict OSHA standards and have numerous 5-star reviews to prove our quality, along with an A+ BBB rating in all markets.
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