Questions Every Homeowner Should Ask Before Hiring a Roofer

Questions Every Homeowner Should Ask Before Hiring a Roofer

Before beginning a roofing project, such as a roof repair or a roof replacement, there are a handful of questions you need answered.

For example, if your project involves repairing an old roof, it’s best to have an inspection done prior to starting any updates or repairs. Not only will this help you determine if there is damage to your current roof, but it can also help you understand the full scope of your project. If the inspector does find damage, it could add to the cost and the timeline of your project, something that is crucial to understand from the start.

To prepare you for your roofing project, we’ve compiled a list of the top questions to ask a roofer before hiring them. These questions will help you identify the right local roofing contractor and avoid contractors with red flags in their past. Honest roofers will be happy to answer questions and provide the information you need to make an informed hiring decision.

Do Your Background Research

References let you know a contractor is who they say they are. A reputable roofing contractor or roofing company will be excited to show you a list of satisfied customers and/or a portfolio of the work they’ve performed. Asking for a list of references is a crucial step in hiring a roofing professional. If you can get a reference list, call the homeowners on the list to learn about their experience with the contractor. They can share honest feedback that you might not have been able to get otherwise.

CYA: Cover Your Assets

All roofing contractors should have current workers’ compensation and general liability insurance and should be able to provide certificates of insurance upon request. This helps to protect your home and your assets from claims due to accidents that may occur while the contractor is working on your roof.

While an accident is unlikely, it is important that you and your property are covered. These insurance policies allow you to proceed with your roof repairs without worrying about paying for medical bills related to accidents on your property. If a company is unwilling to provide you with proof of their insurance, or they say they don’t have any, it’s best to begin searching for a different contractor.

Licensing is also important when making the decision to hire a roofing contractor. While Indiana doesn’t currently require a state-level license, rules and regulations for contractors differ based on where you live, so it’s important that the company you choose to work with understands your local licensing requirements and building codes.

Get It in Writing!

When it comes to construction projects, costly surprises are never fun. This can be prevented by asking your roofer to supply a written estimate before starting the project. The estimate will give you the best idea of your total project cost, including labor, materials (e.g., roofing shingles, flashing, sealant, etc.), and any other miscellaneous items. Refer to the written estimate throughout the project to ensure everything is going according to plan. When your contractor completes the work and gets your new roof installed, it should be close to what was estimated so you can easily get payment handled.

When reviewing the estimate, don’t forget to ask what your roofer will do with extra materials and any construction debris. Most contractors will dispose of the unwanted materials on their own, but if not, you will want to have a plan for what you will do with it ahead of time. It can be overwhelming to have a yard covered in unusable material and not know what to do with it.

Set a Schedule

It’s very easy for projects to get off track if there isn’t a clear timeline. Ask your roofing contractor how they will ensure your project is ready by the deadline you agree upon, weather permitting. While it might seem like a silly question, it’s good to know that they have procedures in place to get your project done on time. Most contractors have a proven system for completing projects and should be able to give you specific examples.

Words of Warning

Storm Damage

Even if your roofing repair project wasn’t planned, in the event of severe storm damage, these questions should be part of your hiring process to ensure you get everything you want and need from your roofing project.

After every storm, imposters will flood the area, claiming to be one of your local roofers to solicit work. Sometimes “storm chasers” from out of state will even go as far as to set up temporary LLCs to appear as if they are a local company to take advantage of desperate homeowners in need of storm-related repairs. Oftentimes, these individuals will do shoddy work using the cheapest materials available knowing that they’ll be long gone by the time their “repair” needs repairing.

It is especially important in these situations to carefully vet contractors to ensure they have the experience, insurance, and reputation required to perform a proper and lasting roof repair.

Doing More Harm Than Good

Not many roofing contractors will tell you this, but roof repairs can often do more harm than good. Most roof repairs are nothing more than expensive band aids that mask a major problem. Depending on the roof’s age, doing too many piecemeal repairs can cause irreparable damage that could lead to a speedy whole-roof replacement!

Creating a Great Roofing Relationship

If you’re looking for a reputable contractor for your roofing project, look no further than White Oak Construction! With over 40 years of experience and a dedication to customer satisfaction, you can rest assured that your roofing project will be completed on-time and on-budget, with the highest quality of craftsmanship and materials.

We specialize in helping homeowners upgrade from original, builder-grade shingles to high-quality roofing materials that provide superior weather protection and boost curb appeal for many years to come. Our shingles are engineered to be one of the most durable shingles on the market and carry a long-term warranty that we are proud to stand behind.

Contact us today to request your FREE estimate! Our team is happy to answer any questions you may have and provide certificates of insurance and references upon request.

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