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What to Ask a Roofing Contractor Before Hiring One

A poor roofing job can costly you dearly in roof repairs and leaks in the future, so you really have to spend time looking for the right contractor. In so doing, interview each prospect you have, making sure to six five crucial questions.

a. What is your complete company name and physical address?

First things first, ask for the roofer’s full company name and address. If you get a P.O.box number, let them provide details of their physical location. A contractor that has no physical location is likely a scam and should be stricken off your list.

b. Are you insured?

Roofers should have workmans’ compensation and liability insurance as protection for their clients when accidents occur. Workers’ compensation will protect you against financial responsibility arising from a roofer’s employee getting hurt, or from accidental damages incurred on the job.

Without workman’s’ compensation coverage, you as the homeowner may end up forking medical bills and other costs related to the injury.

c. Do you subcontract for certain or all aspects of the job?

If they do hire subcontractors, ask these people the same questions you asked the roofing subcontractor — especially the part about insurance.

d. Are you a licensed roofer?

Ask your prospect whether they are licensed by your city or state. Licensing requirements can be unique according to the state. Cities and counties may also require a roofer to be licensed. See if a license will be required in your area, and if so, ask local licensing offices if the roofer’s license is update and has no outstanding violations. A business license is not synonymous with a roofer’s license. A business license is merely for tax purposes and identification. It is not an assurance that the person has passed an exam or is qualified to accept roofing projects.

e. Can you give me client references?

Ask for local work sites that you can visit, and take a look at some of their roofing jobs over the last three years. You can also request for references, but previous customers may not want to divulge their personal information, or the contractor could cherry pick a few pleased clients. Call these homeowners and ask if they would be eager to recommend the roofing contractor.

f. Do you provide a warranty for workmanship? A roof warranty is generally for a year, although some roofers may extend this period. The materials are often covered by the manufacturer, and the workmanship by the contractor. These are two distinct warranties, so let the roofer explain the coverage and ask what period is covered for each one.

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Practical and Helpful Tips: Roofers