How to Screen/Vet a Roofing Contractor
Having work done on your home can be a stressful situation. Your home is your most personal asset, and having a person you don’t know working on it can be a little nerve wracking. That’s why it’s so important to screen or vet your roofing contractor before you sign the contract. Doing so can help ensure that the person you hire is someone you can put your trust in.
Get Some Information
The first thing you should do when meeting a new roofing contractor is to ask for some information. Start by getting a copy of their driver’s license to ensure that they’re local and not from out of state. Next, get the full name of their company, along with the address and phone number. This allows you to check them out on places like the Better Business Bureau or Angie’s List for reviews and to see how they handle problems and things like customer complaints.
Ask for at least three recent, local references from past jobs that you can check up on. Call each reference and find out things such as how satisfied they were with the work, whether it proceeded on schedule, and how the roofer handled any problems that cropped up during the job. You should also make sure that he cleaned up afterward, and treated the homeowner with respect.
Find out about Manufacturer’s Warranties
You should find out what kind of warranties your roofer is offering, and whether or not one of those is the extended manufacturer’s warranty. Most roofers can offer you warranties on the labor, but a manufacturer’s warranty is different. To offer it, your roofer needs to undergo additional training with the manufacturer to become certified. This can help ensure that your roofer has the skills necessary to do the job.
Ask about License and Insurance
Find out if your roofing contractor is licensed with the state and if they have the necessary insurance, including worker’s comp for the job. Having a roofing license means that your roofer specializes in what he does, and in some states may also mean that he’s undergone additional training, and can be held accountable for his work. Not having a license can be a red flag that you want to avoid.
Ask about Crews and Subcontractors
Does your roofing contractor intend to do the work himself or subcontract it out? If he uses a crew, how long have they been with him, and what kind of background checks does he do on them? Roofers rarely work alone, so you need to find out information about everyone that’s involved in the process. If your roofer substitutes a sub-contractor for the job then all your screening will have to be redone. By checking up on crews you can also find out how long they’ve been working together and whether high turnover is a problem.
Check the Contract
Get everything in writing from the roofer. This includes the start and end dates, estimate, and any warranties they offer. Watch out for blank areas in the contract or missing information; if you talk about it, it should be in the contract. If something is missing, or there is space to change things after you sign, it’s a red flag.
Northern Virginia Roofing is a second generation-owned and operated roofing and siding company. We’ve been in business since 1963 and have had the same phone number since 1980. Our crews have been with us at least 11 years and we offer one of the best warranties in the industry – 25+ years.
Give us a call today for a free estimate on your roofing job.
To download a free copy of our book, How to Hire a GREAT Contractor: Step by Step Guide- click here.
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