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21 Questions to Ask a Roofer Before Hiring

Your home is a huge investment, one you want to keep protected from damage. That means turning to the right people when you need help. Your roof is one area of your home that you need to call a professional to handle any issues that arise. But, you don’t want to turn to just any company. You need to find one that is reputable and that you can trust. Before you hire anyone, here are some important questions to ask:

1. How much roofing experience do you have? 

When it comes to roof work, the level of experience is critical. You wouldn’t want someone that only has a year or so of experience to work on something as important as your roof. The more experience a company has–with proof–the better. It is also important to keep in mind that while the company may be young, it doesn’t automatically mean the team is inexperienced. They may have just started their own company recently and beh experts in the field. 

2. Are you local, and what is your address and phone number?

You also want to ask if they are local, and for their address, phone number, and complete company name. You want them to have a physical location, not just a P.O. box, which is a red flag that a company may not be reliable. Being local is important if problems arise.

3. Are you licensed?

Codes and requirements vary from state-to-state, but most states require roofing contractors to be licensed in the state where they work. If they are licensed, you’ll have some reassurance that the company is reputable. It also means that if issues arise or something goes wrong, you will have legal recourse. 

4. Do you have Workman’s Comp  insurance and General Liability insurance?

Having valid insurance is critical, and is another important question to ask a roofing contractor. Workman’s Comp insurance is important, as it protects the workers should they get injured on the job. If the company doesn’t have it and they provide proof that it happened on your property, you can end up liable for the injured worker’s medical bills.

General Liability insurance protects your property. That means that if damage occurs to your home while the roof work is being done, the company’s General Liability insurance will cover it. Otherwise, you will need to pay for the damage yourself. 

5. Will you inspect my roof to see what else should be done?

If you’re paying to have a new roof installed, you want to cover all of your concerns at once. Ask the roofing company if they will inspect your roof, including your attic, for any work that may help ensure the best roof replacement. That means checking for leaks, high levels of moisture, and proper ventilation, among other things. Then ask how any issues can be corrected.

6. Will my old roof be removed?

In terms of what questions to ask a roofer, this is something important. Some companies will claim to save time and money by performing a simple visual inspection before installing a new roof over the existing one. By doing it this way, you could be only burying roof damage deeper–you’d never know if there are soft or rotten spots of plywood underneath the old shingles unless you pull them up and look at them.

7. Will I get a detailed written estimate?

When it comes to any work on your home, you want a detailed written estimate, breaking down what you are paying for so there are no surprises at the end of the job.

8. What things may change the contracted price?

While a written estimate is important, surprises can happen on the job. Another question to ask a roofer before hiring them is: what can affect the job price?

9. What materials are best for my roof?

As a roofing professional, the roofer should know a wide array of roofing materials. Ask them their thoughts on different materials, and what they think is best for your home and why.

10. Who will be doing my roofing work? 

In some cases, companies use subcontractors–if that is the case, you want to get verification that the subcontractors also have Workman’s Comp and General Liability insurance. You should also have lien waivers to help protect you if the company you hired doesn’t pay the subcontractors.

11. How much experience does the Project Lead have?

Whoever you talk to may not be the one in charge of your project. So, you want to be sure you know who is, and ensure that they have the right amount of experience for the job.

12. What is the project’s timeline?

You also need to consider the timeline. Ask the roofer how long your roofing project should take to complete, so you have an idea of the timeline. It won’t be set in stone, but it should give you a general idea.

13. Who will be my contact during the work?

There will be a team of people working on your roof, so knowing who your contract is for projects, questions, and issues is important. Make sure you get their name and phone number.

14. Will I receive regular updates?

Since it’s your home, it’s only natural to want to know how things are going. Another  to ask a roofer is how often you will be updated, so that you can know the progress.

15. How will you protect my property during work?

Roofing requires a lot of people and equipment, and if the team isn’t careful, it can result in property damage. Ask a potential roofing contractor what steps they would take to protect your property.

16. Will you use ladder stabilizers or standoffs to protect my gutters?

Ask the roofers if they use things like ladder stabilizers or standoffs to protect your gutters. If they don’t, then ask how they intend to keep them safe.

17. What happens if there is bad weather during the job?

Sometimes inclement weather happens and the work has to stop. If that happens, you’ll need to ask the contractor what steps they will take to protect your home and roof from damage.

18. Do you bring a container for refuse materials, and where will it go?

Roof work creates a lot of waste, and you want to be sure the contractor has a container for all of it. You also want to be sure that wherever they place this container, which will be very heavy, will not cause property damage. 

19. What is the new roof’s warranty?

It is important to know the warranty coverage because it can vary depending on different products. Dimensional roof shingles can have a warranty of, at minimum, 25 years. Synthetic shingles can go up to a minimum of 50 years.

20. What payment methods do you accept?

Ask the  roofer about their accepted payment methods. Knowing ahead of time will help prepare for paying for the work when the time comes.

21. Are there any tax credits or utility rebates available for my new roof?

Some roofing materials, particularly the more sustainable, synthetic options may offer special tax credits and rebates. Ask your roofer if the roof comes with any credits or rebates and how to apply for them.

You wouldn’t trust just anyone with your valuables, so why trust just anyone to do work on your home? These are just some of the questions to ask a roofer before hiring them for a job. Of course, there are many more you can ask, but asking these essential questions will help you hire a trustworthy roofing company that will do the job right. 

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