You’re a homeowner and determined your home’s roof needs fixing or needs to be improved with a replacement roof. You’re all set to get moving. What’s the optimal way to get a high quality roofer who will accomplish a good job? What could you look for in a roof contractor or contractor to obtain this work? Virginia Dale
When homeowners choose to repair a roof or replace that roof with asphalt during the cold winter months, they’re often plagued by worries that their family will freeze before the job is completed. In the same vein, those starting a roofing job in the sweltering summer months worry that they’ll be facing heat stroke. These concerns are perfectly normal and common among many homeowners looking for roofing fixes or roof replacement contractors.
Virginia DaleMy home suffered damage from a severe hail storm this year. It broke out our two street facing windows and our upstairs window. It totaled the exterior of our cars and even destroyed the rosebushes my wife had tried to keep alive through the summer. And the hail damaged roof? The roof was wrecked, even I could tell that and I am no roofing expert.My doorbell was ringing almost before the rain had stopped. It was an "Invasion of the Roofing Guys." I talked to no less than five on the first day. So who do you choose? They all pretty much say the same thing. Some guys seem more professional than others, some were very pushy and applied a lot of pressure for me to sign a "no obligation" contract. I felt like I was in over my head. Who was going to rip me off the least? That was the pessimistic thought that kept coming back to me.I eventually picked a roofing contractor that seemed like a decent kind of guy. He talked to me about his family and he convinced me he was on my side. I have a pretty good BS detector and even though I thought he was a little too pushy, overall he seemed trustworthy. He had testimonials from other home owners whose roof installations he had done. He seemed knowledgeable. Based on my limited knowledge, I felt like he was the best guy to go with out of the many I had talked to. So I didn't take the time to call any of his referrals and I signed a contract. Things started well. We got the paperwork done and he received his first check and went to work. A large group of workers descended on my house and had the roof stripped before 10:00 am on the first day. By the morning of the second day it was done and they were gone. I was amazed at how fast the job went. Right away, I saw some things that bothered me. They left nails in the yard and a pile of shingles for me to remove. I felt like full cleanup would include nails but I let it slide. I'm sure they assumed the shingles were mine so I would want the extras. I didn't need them, and how was I to dispose of them? But the roof itself just didn't look exceptional; it bowed in some areas and had some uneven spots. Basically, it looked like a poorly done job.The roofing company also contracted to repair the windows. Once they had my check they were far more difficult to reach than before. The windows finally got done 2 months later. Then we had problems with the final payment. Somehow it worked out that I owed him more money. I refused to pay and they eventually faded away. So I would give my roofer experience 4 out of 10. I'm sure others have had much better and much worse experiences.Here is some key points that I learned that I hope will help you when you need your roof replaced:1. Get a local roofing company to examine your house before you call your insurance company. 2. Get at least two quotes from local roofing contractors. Unless your live in a very rural area, there should be no shortage of roofers to contact. Make sure you get referrals from them. 3. Follow up on these referrals and talk to their customers about the job they did. 4. Be careful what you sign. The "no obligation" contract may be more than what you are told. 5. Make sure the quotes spell out exactly what will be done. If not, you won't be able to compare an apples to apples quotes. Be sure it includes cleanup and haul-off. 6. Contact your insurance company and schedule an appointment with the adjuster. 7. If you have found someone that you feel comfortable with, I would suggest you have the roofing contractor on hand when the insurance adjuster is there. 8. Do not pay for the entire job in advance. Make sure everything is completed per the contract before you make your final payment. 9. And finally - to repeat - take your time, use a local roofer and ask for references. Next time I will take my time to find someone I am totally comfortable with. Always ask questions. Make sure your contract spells out exactly what will be done. Find a roofer who takes the time to make the job clear to you before he collects the check, or your sign a contract. Take it from me, the little bit of extra time it takes up front will pay in a satisfactory job and peace of mind later.
Hail Roof Damage - What to Look ForWhen you are ready to install a new roof on your home you should always prepare a list of questions to ask the roofing contractor before your scheduled appointments. There are many different styles of roofing materials so you should take some time, and look online for the roofing type you want on your home.What Are The Questions To Ask The Roofing Contractor? What Type Of Roofing Materials Do You Sell? What Type Of Insurance Do You Have? Do You Have Any References? How Many People Will Be On The Crew? How Long Have You Been In Business? How Long Will This Roof Installation Take? What Is Your Workmanship Guarantee? Does My Home Need Additional Ventilation? What Are The Different Roofing Types?There are several roofing materials from asphalt roofing, steel or metal roofing, ceramic roofing, and single ply rubber roofing. Most residential homes have either asphalt or metal roofing panels as the roofing products, and on the flat roofs like dormers single ply rubber is also used. In tropical or different regions ceramic or terracotta roofing materials which can be used. All of these products are great for waterproofing, and are very easy to find information about online. What Roofing Materials Are Best?In different parts of the country roofing materials will change because of weather conditions. In Maine people use a lot of steel roofs because of the heavy snow fall. In Florida the choice of roofing is tile, and because of the heat, and asphalt shingles are used all over the country. There are also special asphalt roofing shingles for high winds along the coast, and flat line wind storms like in North Dakota and surrounding areas.What Insurance Is Required For Roofers?As you can understand roofing is a very dangerous job, and not all liability insurance is the same. Roofing liability insurance is usually about 200 percent more than basic carpenter liability insurance, and excludes roofing completely. I have seen many insurance binders over the years from roofer who has only purchased basic carpenter type liability insurance, and when a problem occurs the home owner will not be protected or covered under this type of policy. As a homeowner you need to have the insurance company send you a copy in the mail with your name on the binder, and make sure that the policy includes roofing.The next insurance that the roofing contractor should have is workman's compensation insurance, and this is where you could lose your home if someone is killed or seriously injured. In most homeowners insurance policy's it is clearly stated, that anyone you hire to perform work on said property must have workman's compensation insurance. And you are responsible to make sure that they have this workman's compensation insurance before you hire them to start the work on your home.What Should I Need For Ventilation?The reason a home should have ventilation is to remove the moisture from the home. Prove fact is that each person in the home permeates about 3 gallons of water a day. From showers, to cooking, and breathing water vapor is created and need to be able to leave the property. One of the largest reasons is to allow the attic to breath, and remove all the excess heat from the attic. Roofing manufactures want the attic to be the same temperature as the outside at all times. This adds life to the roofing materials but also helps you save money on your heating, and cooling cost. How Many Estimates Should I Get?You should get at least 3 roofing estimate from reputable roofing contractors to ensure the size of the roof, and compare the roofing materials, and pricing. Caution, do not only make your decision on the price, and you as the home owner must assume some of the responsibility if you insist the contractor lowers his price in which he cannot possibly by the materials, and supply the necessary labor to complete the job correctly. To do the job right the roofing contractor will need to pay for the materials and insurance then hire qualified installers to effectively complete the roofing work. Plus the roofing contractor will need to pay for his tools, equipment, and his vehicles plus additional over-head to manage the job correctly.