Your roof is one of the most important elements of your home. In addition to looking nice and boosting your "curb appeal," a healthy roof is vital in protecting from water damage and keeping your home interior safe from the elements. When going to repair, replace, or upgrade your roof, you'll need the services of a professional, which means you'll need to contact roofing companies to find the best candidates for the job. When surveying the field of potential roofers to work on your home, look for some of the following qualities and consult various sources to find one that you can trust.
The concept of safety applies both to yourself and the roofing company you decide to use. You'll want to make sure that your roofing contractor has undergone appropriate training and safety programs to minimize risks while working on your roof and limiting the possibility of accidents. Beyond that, though, you'll want to make sure that roofers you're examining have the necessary licenses, certifications, and insurance before starting any work on your home. This will keep you protected from shoddy work as licensed contractors must undergo training to stay up-to- date on current procedures. It will also help cover costs in the event of an accident.
Consider Going Local
Using a local roofing company limits the possibility of scams and increases the chances that they are cognizant of local rules and regulations. In addition, local contractors will likely have references within the community that you can follow up on and will have a relationship with local suppliers to source their crews and building materials.
Beyond that, if something goes wrong with your roof in the future, using a local company means they are more apt to come back and perform follow-up work, and you can establish a good rapport with them for sourcing future work and getting in contact with other contractors who can assist with additional home improvements.
Balance Price & Quality
Getting the lowest price shouldn't be the primary factor in choosing your roofing contractor. Some companies will purposefully lowball estimates to try and secure work and may deliver an inferior finished product. Down the line, this could lead to more costly repairs that exceed the cost savings of the initial job.
To better protect yourself, balance the prices a company offers against other factors. A roofing company's reputation, level of training, enthusiasm, and quality of work should be your first concerns. This will ensure that you are left with a solid roofing job that is less likely to run you extra in the future.
Investigate Their Reputation
Don't take a roofing contractor at their word, verify the claims that they make about their reputation by examining sources. Any experienced roofer should have references that they can provide to you, and you should call these references to learn about the company's history.
Some questions to keep in mind when investigating the roofer's reputation include the level of quality that they provided in the finished product, whether they stuck to schedule, if they were easy to work with, and if they stayed within budget for the job.
Avoid Roofers That Use Scam Tactics
Less scrupulous roofing companies might take to the practice of storm chasing, canvassing a neighborhood after a big weather event looking for a quick buck. You would do best to avoid companies that use this tactic, as there is a significant possibility that they may try to pressure you into disadvantageous terms for a job.
A better strategy is to take your time, properly review the evaluation criteria for different roofing companies, and decline signing any paperwork from roofers who suddenly appear at your doorstep, claiming that they were just "in the neighborhood."
Gauge Their Warranty Policy
This will keep you protected in the case of improperly performed work or other issues with your roof that may not manifest until years later. If you have a sufficient warranty, your roofing company will honor that agreement and fix your roof if something else happens through no fault of your own.
Make Sure They Are Skilled at Customer Service & Communication
This is key in making sure a job is completed to your personal standards. Roofers with poor communication are a hassle. Those with great customer service skills, however, will stay in contact with you, update you on changes in the schedule if need be, and, in general, be friendlier to engage. Like checking a company's history, you can learn a bit about their communication skills from past clients. You can also ascertain if they are the right fit based on your initial interactions with them. If you get the feeling that they might not be the contractor for you, don't be afraid to trust your gut and search for a different roofer that you feel more comfortable using.