There are many different roofing contractors from which to choose; however, there appear to be mainly two different types of them in a general sense. One type is registered and licensed, while the other type is one who goes door-to-door, offering tempting proposals and quality workmanship at very alluring prices.
The only way to be sure of which type of contractor is the best choice to make is by doing adequate research of each potential candidate prior to seeking bids to identify the reputable ones who stand by their work and will finish the project according to the expectations of the homeowners. Leaving this important decision to chance is a serious mistake considering that anything could happen during the roofing process and there are so many things that could happen if a roof is not properly installed.
Following are some things to consider in avoiding making the wrong choice in contractors:
- Business License – Business licenses can assure a homeowner that the company is qualified to perform activities such as roof replacement, repairs and preventive maintenance. Dealing with a company that is unlicensed is very risky because their integrity and reliability is frankly questionable. Licensing also signifies that the company has passed and completed all qualifications and required training as stated by local, state, and / or federal governing agencies.
- Better Business Bureau – Homeowners should check to see if the business is registered with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and ask for a 'reliability report'. A good one has an "A" rating with no customer complaints. The BBB is the best place to verify the reputation of the company before signing any contracts.
- Insurance – Homeowners should avoid choosing a company who can not provide a certificate of liability and proof of worker's compensation insurance. Always ask for a copy of the insurance certificate to ensure that they are bonded and carry the appropriate insurance coverages. These policies protect the homeowner from having to assume responsibility in case someone is injured while the project is ongoing on their property.
- Written Estimates – A good company should provide the homeowner with a detailed, printed copy of what work they are going to perform and all the expenses that should occur during the entire project; it should also include an expected completion date.
- References – A contractor with a poor reputation will not be able to provide references about their previous projects. When a homeowner asks a builder to provide references, they should be provided with exact locations and should stop by that residence to verify the quality and the outcome of that builder's work. It is also a good idea to ask the previous customer what their personal feelings were about the kind of service they received from that roofing contractor, whether they were satisfied or disappointed with the service they received. Homeowners should get a minimum of three references from the contractors they are considering and verify each result.
- Experience – The number of years a company has been in business is a good measurement that they are reliable and dependable in completing a roofing project.
- Workmanship Warranty – A quality roofing contractor will be able to provide a homeowner with a workmanship warranty. The critical time for a newly installed roofing structure is the first two years. That warranty is a guarantee that if any problems are encountered during that two-year time period, it will be properly addressed.
Hiring a professional roofing builder may seem like an exhaustive task. There are many roofing contractors who make promises but can not deliver on those promises with the proper outcome. By considering the options discussed above, homeowners can avoid choosing the wrong contractor and instead selecting one who will provide a great, long-lasting roof!