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Top Questions to Ask When Hiring a Roofing Contractor

The important roofing questions homeowners should ask

Before a contractor comes to your home to do any work, what should be talked about first? With the Internet today, anyone can create a profile and be whoever they want to be. To make sure you're hiring a true professional with credibility and years of experience, you need to do some digging. HomePro Match has laid out the top questions homeowners should ask when hiring a roofing contractor. Plus, check out the attached video, with special guests Ron Hazelton from Ron Hazelton's House Calls and Eddie Griffin, Owner of Brown Roofing, for more expert advice!

How do I know it's time to replace my roof?

Many homeowners probably don't know how old their roof is and when they should replace it, as most homeowners buy already-built homes with a preexisting roof on them. Without knowing how old your roof is and how long it should last, figuring out when to replace it could be tricky. However, there are a few visible signs you'll start to notice when it's about time. Eddie Griffin mentions that common signs include shingles starting to lift, color of the roof starting to stain, or any noticeable leaks. Of course, if you don't see any of these problems but still want to make sure your roof is in good health, a roof inspection would be the best way to detect any underlying issues, if any, to ensure you're in the know.

    Research

  1. What's your company's previous work and customer reviews?
  2. Today, the first impression of any person or business lies first in what's on the Internet. Before and Afters give a clear understanding of the work the company has done. Testimonials from past customers show credibility and trust in their services. Also, reviews are a great way to see a bunch of opinions, good or bad. After looking at these three key points, you can dive deeper into the facts.

  3. Are you insured?
  4. One of the most important questions to ask when you're looking to hire a roofing contractor is "are you properly insured?" Make sure to ask your potential roofing contractor for a physical copy of their certificate in order to be 100% sure they're right for the job. Eddie points out that with this certificate, you can see if they have the proper liability and workman's compensation in order to make sure your home is protected if anything happens.

  5. Are you licensed? What is your license number?
  6. Along with making sure the contractor you're hiring is properly insured, make sure to look for their license number on their website. No license number found? This means they aren't licensed to work on roofs, therefore, you shouldn't contact them to work on yours!

    Call with Contractor

    Before you spend any money on a costly roofing job, you want to make sure you know what you're paying for. Many homeowners leave it up to the professionals, but don't know what they're truly getting in for. Make sure to ask the following questions on the phone with the contractor you're looking to hire before you officially book an appointment.

  7. What roofing services do you offer? State the reason for reaching out
  8. Make sure to give a clear understanding of why you're reaching out so the contractor can get some sort of understanding of what the issue is.

  9. What is involved with your roof inspection? Does your team go on the roof?
  10. In most cases with roof inspections, the contractor will be able to detect where the problem/problems are coming from and the best way to approach them. A good roofing company will come out and give an inspection anyways before any job is started to see the issues firsthand, collect exact measurements of your roof, and list the next steps moving forward. If you are concerned about the health of your roof or if you see any issues with your roof, you should hire a professional for a roof inspection.

  11. Do you offer free estimates?
  12. Many companies offer free roof estimates after they come out and inspect your roof. Make sure to ask this on the phone so no sudden costs appear!

  13. Are you OSHA certified?
  14. OSHA stands for the Occupational Safety and Health Act. In order for someone like a roofing contractor to be certified to work on your roof, they must first take a 30-hour course on safety practices and precautions. Since certain safety precautions are required to work on a roof, make sure the person you're hiring for the job has this certification first.

  15. What are your payment & financing options?
  16. Knowing your payment and financing options before you hire a contractor is crucial to be aware of. You want to make sure that if you end up hiring this contractor, you'll be able to pay them with the money you have set aside. Clearing this up on the phone with the contractor will save you headaches down the line. Plus, this may be another deciding factor in who you ultimately hire for your roofing job!

    In-person

    After you've made the phone call, or many calls with various companies, it is time to settle on one company for the job. After the contractor comes out to inspect your roof and addresses the issues that need to be fixed, here are the questions to ask.

  17. What shingle options are available?
  18. Make sure you know what's available to you before you decide on which shingle should be installed on your roof,

  19. Are you certified by the manufacturer to install the shingles you represent/sell? Ask for paperwork.
  20. Make sure the person you're hiring is certified by the manufacturer of the roof to properly install it. Anyone can go down to their local home improvement store and buy some shingles to install. However, it's very important to know that the contractor you're hiring is certified by the manufacturer to install the shingles and has taken classes to know how to properly install them.

  21. What is the life expectancy of the new roof installed?
  22. Whether you're buying an entirely new home or looking to replace your old roof, knowing the life expectancy of your roof is important. Eddie Griffin points out that people who have already had a home for a while probably have a 30-year life expectancy. However, with new technological advancements today, most shingles on the market have a lifetime architectural warranty, lasting about 50 years. Knowing the life expectancy of your roof's shingles will give you a better understanding of if and when you'll need a replacement.

  23. How long will the job take? Ask for a clear timeline of when the job will start & when it will be complete.
  24. Knowing a clear timeline of when the job will start and when it will be completed will hold the roofing contractor accountable for those dates. Eddie Griffin says that typically, a roofing job will take 1-2 days to complete. The amount of time taken to complete a roofing job will depend on the type of roof that is being installed and the current health of your existing roof.

  25. Ask about a backup date if inclement weather strikes.
  26. As weather sometimes isn't in our best favor, make sure to set up a back-up date just in case to have all your bases covered.

  27. What's the warranty on my roof? Ask for write out of this.
  28. Knowing the details of your roof's warranty will definitely help you out in the long run. As a homeowner, you want to make sure that your roof is covered under any circumstance. For instance, if worst-case scenario a disaster strikes and your roof needs repairs or replacement, you will have a clear understanding of what can be done under your warranty. Ask your roofing contractor what this warranty is and have them write it out for you to look back on.

  29. What's the price & quality of the roof I'm having installed or repaired?
  30. It is important to know what roof is being installed on your home and that you're getting your money's worth. Eddie Griffin explains that there are a lot of different shingles on the market today and no two shingles are the same. A copper additive to your shingles is an advantage, as copper deflects the growth of algae on the roof. Zinc is another additive that is sometimes incorporated to deflect algae growth, but Eddie explains that he's seen copper work much better. Knowing the quality of your shingles will ensure you're getting the best bang for your buck.

  31. Does the price include tax, labor, materials, warranty, & removal of all debris? Ask for an exact quote in writing.
  32. To avoid any surprise costs in the end, make sure you get an exact quote from the contractor of what will be included in the price you're paying.

    Asking the above questions to your local roofing contractor is essential to ensure you're getting your money's worth and that you have a safe, protected roof over your head. To learn more about the specifics, contact your local roofing contractor today!

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