Questions to Ask Your Roofer
Hiring people to do your roof will always run a few risks. You can start by asking family and friends to refer someone who has already done a great job in their homes. Several roofers advertise online and can show you pictures of work they have done in the past. Nothing adds more assurance than actually seeing their work and sitting down with them to discuss what you have in mind. You can ask a few questions to help lessen the chances of ending up with unreliable roofers.
Are you insured?
Generally, contractors should have two kinds of insurance, workman’s compensation which protects the workers from negligence while they are on the job site. It also provides wage replacement and needed medical benefits for them. Then there are liability insurances specifically for roofing contractors that cover any financial loss brought on by damages. Both these insurances work together to better protect both the homeowner and the roofers. If they are not insured, and accidents happen, you may be liable for those expenses.
Are you and your team members certified and licensed?
For roofers to become licensed, they have to pass standards and security certificates to operate their business. This proves that they are equipped in their area of expertise. Make sure they are both licensed roofers and that they are licensed to operate as a business. If the roofers you are considering hiring are not licensed, you could run risks of not being able to hold them liable for faulty installations or unfinished work.
Do you use subcontractors?
Often, a company may hire another company to do the job. In some cases, this may be due to the nature of the job, or they are understaffed and will be hiring additional workers. What is important is that you trust your contractor to get the job done and that your contract stipulates that they are responsible for the people they hire.
Are you locals in the area?
A contractor that is local in the area has several advantages. They know the area well and will be able to get better prices, and they will not have to travel far to purchase materials if they need to restock. This may not be a problem if you agree on the additional cost of hiring roofers from another State. Also, local roofers will have a better understanding of the building codes in the area. Local roofers will also be known in the community, which is a great way to see what else they have done in the neighborhood, should you need references or referrals.
Will you be installing a drip edge?
Most roofers will install a drip edge. This is a metal piece that is installed on the edges of the roof, under the shingles. It allows the water on the roof to trickle down into the gutters. It is crucial to make sure that the drip edges or edge metals are a part of the roof installation, especially if there is a difference between your old roof and the new one.
How will you protect my gutters?
Fixing or installing a new roof could cause damage to your gutters which are made of plastic or metal and can be easily dented from all the ongoing construction on your roof. These could lead to other problems, such as leaks after the roof has been finished. Make sure to discuss with your roofer how they will be protecting your gutters and if they will be replacing them if they are damaged.
Will you clean up when you leave at the end of the day?
Roof installations are big home improvement projects and will take up a lot of space on your front lawn, back yard, or driveway. At the end of each day, there may be tools and equipment lying around that are hazardous to your family and pets. Make sure that you discuss with your roofer what will happen at the end of each working day. Will they be cleaning up or covering their equipment?
Who will be in charge onsite if I have questions?
It can be frustrating for a homeowner who has questions but cannot speak to someone in charge. In some cases, workers will be given instructions and then left to do their job with little or no supervision. This may work for some roofing companies, but if the homeowner is more hands-on with the construction developments, it will be vital that they discuss early on schedules on updates and how they can be contacted in case questions arise. If the supervisor is not on-site, then another person should be reachable.
Can you be reached after work hours and how?
It is also important to ask if they can be reached after work hours and how. If your work schedule does not allow you the time to drop by in the mornings to check up on them and your only available time is after their shift, ask if you can have scheduled a meeting to update each other on the progress of the roof.
What happens if work stops because of the weather?
If the weather has been bad for more than a few days, what will happen? These are questions you should discuss before the project begins. Although the weather is unpredictable, having precautionary measures set in place is essential. Ask your roofer if they are prepared for situations such as a sudden storm and can ensure you that your home will be secure until construction can resume.
Is there a warranty on my new roof?
Make sure to ask about the warranty of your new roof. These are mostly for the shingles on your roof. Their quality will determine how long your roof will be able to protect the rest of your home. Low-grade shingles will start to curl, allowing air to seep into your home, causing damages that could cause mold, mildew, leaks, and even ice dams.