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9 Questions to Ask a Roof Contractor Before Hiring

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pencil iconLevel Edge Construction

The roof over your head is important, which is why you can’t just hire any roofing contractor to make the necessary repairs or carry out a complete roof replacement. But how do you know when someone is right for the job before signing off on the contract?

It all starts with knowing the right questions to ask a contractor!

After all, a lot can go wrong during a roof repair or general renovation project. You want to make sure the contractor you hire is equipped to mitigate any issues that crop up with your best interests as a homeowner in mind.

9 Important Questions to Ask a Contractor Before Hiring Them:

1. What Is Your Legal Company Name and Address?

You need to know who you’re hiring and where they can be reached. Hiring a contractor that uses a P.O. or private mailbox can be a cause for concern if they don’t have a physical address nearby. 

woman on the phone asking questions to the contractors

It’s also crucial that you have the full, legal name of your potential contractor. They should have a business website, and you should be able to find them in the Better Business Bureau database, on social media, and other online databases where you can read reviews from previous clients and verify their existence. 

2. Are You Licensed and Insured?

Legitimate roofing contractors will carry worker’s compensation insurance and liability insurance so that everyone is protected in the event of a construction project accident. They also need to have the proper licensing and certifications to legally perform work on businesses and homes. 

Unlicensed contractors that are caught doing work can end up incurring fines for both parties and without the proper insurance, homeowners are at risk of having to pay for medical costs and legal suits if a roofer is injured along the way. 

Keep in mind that a business license is not the same as a roofing contractor license. Business licenses are used for tax purposes and to identify the company — it does not mean that the contractor passed the designated state exams or has the qualifications to work as a roofer. A licensed contractor will always be transparent about their qualifications.

3. Do You Offer Any Warranties for Your Roofing Work?

The best roofing contractors take pride in their work, and they’ll guarantee each project by providing homeowners with warranty options should sudden damage occur due to workmanship or other problems.

Usually, the manufacturer will cover the materials, and the roofer will cover their work, providing a range of warranties. However, these warranties are separate from one another, so you’ll need to get the specific details of what’s being offered — and keep in mind that extended warranties may add to the cost of your estimate.

roofing contractor on the roof of a residential home

4. Do You Use Any Roofing Subcontractors?

Always find out if outsourcing parts of the project is common practice for a roofing company. Using subcontractors isn’t necessarily a negative thing, but you’ll want to make sure that any subcontractors the company uses have the proper insurance and licensing to complete the work. Always say no to a company that works with an unlicensed contractor.

You’ll always want to get their physical addresses and legal names to ensure they’re legal, reputable companies. You’ll also want to make sure you know who the project manager will be and if this is the same person that will be the on-site project manager. Otherwise, you could end up dealing with a bunch of different general contractors throughout the project.

5. How Long Have You Been in Business?

Getting an idea of how long a roofing company has been in business is a good indicator that they’re good at what they do and likely offer fair pricing. The contractor will also likely have plenty of references to confirm their work, as well as a portfolio of completed projects.

6. Do You Provide Accurate and Written Estimates?

The last thing you need is a costly surprise when it’s time to pay the bill. Your roofer should be able to provide you with a reliable estimate in writing that’s based on labor, materials, and anything else that might crop up during the job. 

The right contractor will also be communicative throughout the entire project, ensuring that you’re aware of any financial changes to the project. They also may provide options for a payment schedule for homeowners that require special financing.

7. How Will You Ensure the Project’s Timeline?

Roofing contractors set aside a certain amount of time to complete roof replacements and repairs, depending on the materials being used, how many projects they take on at once, and a few other factors. However, obstacles can arise at any time that hinder the job’s completion date.

The roofing contractor should not only be able to give you a complete timeline for your new roof or repair but have contingency plans in place to address any potential obstacles that hinder the project’s completion. This means having enough workers to pick up the slack if there’s an emergency, having backup materials and tools, and a plan for any inclement weather. Some contractors will also provide a “no later than” clause in their contracts, which voids the entire job if it takes too long to complete.

8. How Will You Protect My Lawn During the Project?

Your lawn and landscape should look exactly the same before and after the roofing job is completed. Some contractors will implement mandatory foot traffic patterns for their workers to follow as well as making sure that all heavy equipment rests on the sidewalk and not the grass.

Find out what your roofer plans to do to ensure your lawn and landscape are protected as well as what they’ll do if they cause any damage.

9. What Happens to Refuse Material?

You shouldn’t have to deal with a yard full of junk and debris related to a roofing job. Ask your roofer what they do with all refuse material to ensure that it’s disposed of properly. 

Qualified roofing contractors will typically bring an ample refuse container along with them for everything that requires disposal once the job is done. Taking care of the project’s garbage should also be in the contract.

Work With the Best in the Biz

At Level Edge, we know how intimidating it can be to have exterior work done on your home. That’s why we offer unmatched customer service and a rigorous quality assurance process so all of your questions are answered before you even ask them. Book an inspection with us and learn more about the roofing services we offer today! 

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