How To Hire A Roofer For Your Home
Whether youre considering slate with copper flashing or something a little more modest, a new roof is a major investment that typically costs thousands of dollars.
The materials themselves represent a relatively small portion of the bill. The bulk of what youll spend goes for the skilled labor involved. And that makes choosing an experienced pro the best way to protect your investment and ensure a leakproof job.
Unfortunately, roofing is an easy-entry business that requires little more than a pickup, a ladder and some basic tools to get started.
Will You Use Ladder Stabilizers Or Standoffs To Protect The Gutters During Roof Installation
Its easy to forget about how the roofers will access your roof when youre shopping for a new roof, but its critical for the safety of your gutters. Standoffs and stabilizers will keep an excess of a few hundred pounds off of your gutters, protecting your guttering system while your roof is replaced. Ask the roofing company whether they use ladder stabilizers or standoffs, and if they dont, ask how they plan to protect your gutters. If they dont have an answer or refuse to say, theyre not the roofing contractor for you.
Choose The Right Roofing Contractor
So, how can you be sure of finding the right roofing contractor?
There are plenty about, you just need to make a few simple checks first.
Start by doing some homework. If you know you need roofing work on your property then do some online research about the issue.
Do you have a roof leak, or weather damage? Do you simply know that your roof has come to the end of its useful life and needs replacing?
Recommended Reading: Are Solar Roof Tiles Available
What To Look For In A Roofing Contractor
A new roof is not a cheap investment and shopping for a new one can be intimidating. The roof is the single most important element of your home for protecting you from the elements. When youre putting the security of your roof in the hands of contractors, there are a few steps you should follow to ensure youre making the right choice.
Make A List And Narrow It Down
Dont choose the first contractor online that gives you what you think is a decent quote. Make a list of up to ten contractors in your area that you would like to investigate further. From there, narrow down your list based on obvious criteria. Contractors that you can cross off are those who are not insured or licensed, have a bad rating with the Better Business Bureau, have a slew of negative customer reviews online, and are those who are willing to give you a quote over the phone without inspecting your home first.
Pick Your Top Three Contractors
Once youve narrowed your list a bit, there are a few more criteria you can use to narrow it down to your top three. Ask your prospective contractor how long theyve been in business, if they are willing to give you a dedicated onsite point of contact for your project, and what references they can provide.
Schedule A Quote Call For Your Top Three
Get A Quote In Writing
Detail Post Work Cleanup
Richard Frazier works with Arlington Roofing Contractors, located in Arlington, TX.
Questions To Ask A Roofer
Interviewing contractors is an important step in hiring the right roofer. Heres what to ask:
- What types of roofing do you install?
- Do you work with homeowners insurance to file claims?
- Do you have a current license to do this work in my area?
- What types of insurance do you have, and what is the coverage?
- Can you give me two or three references to check?
- Do you offer a free on-site inspection?
- Do you take photos during the inspection and after completing the project?
- Will you give me a written estimate after the inspection?
- Do you do roofing repairs? How much do they cost?
- Is your work covered by manufacturer warranty?
- How do you keep projects on schedule? Whats your inclement weather policy?
- Do you remove or dispose of old roofing materials? Is there a disposal charge? Do you recycle old materials?
- When and how do you bill or invoice? Do you accept credit cards? Do you offer financing?
Also Check: How To Repair Rotted Roof Plywood
Talk To Various Contractors
Talk to different contractors to get an honest idea for a reasonable price range. Interview several contractors before making a hiring decision.
Compare the bids, remembering that price is just one part of the project. Dont make a hasty decision.
On average installing a new roof costs about $7,600. You dont want to make your decision on a hundred dollars for a project of a thousand dollars.
What Do Their Customers Say
Checking references is one of the best ways you can gain more information about roofing companies and their services. Many businesses will post testimonials from happy customers on their websites, including more information about what sort of work was done and the customer service they received. And here youll also often find detailed images of jobs theyve undertaken and the end result.
Strongguard has over 20 years experience servicing customers in Brisbane and Southeast Queensland. on 3623 4422 for a quote!
- ABN 67 360 545 042
- ACN 074 581 392
Recommended Reading: How To Put A Roof On A Patio
How Do I Pick A Good Roofer
How do you pick a good roofer? Its a good idea to ask friends and family members about their past experiences with roofers this way youll get an idea of the roofers they liked, and the ones they did not like. Furthermore, go online and read reviews. You can also call around and talk on the phone with various companies. Ask questions. See how you feel about how they treated you on the phone.
How Much Do Roofers Charge
Many roofers charge by the hour, and often more for the first hour, particularly if they have had to travel from further afield. But some will negotiate a price based on the type, especially if they can estimate how long it will take.
Weve surveyed roofers¹ to find out how much you might need to pay for some common roofing jobs.
Our figures are only a guide to average costs, and there are several factors that can affect how much youll be charged, including:
- where you live
- the age and condition of your property
- how long the job takes
- ease of access to your roof
- the type of roof tile or material being used
- whether scaffolding is needed .
Unless otherwise specified, prices include labour and materials but exclude VAT. We’ve also added tips below on how to save money and find a reliable roofer.
Find trusted roofers near you. Only roofers who have passed an assessment by our trading standards professionals, and who follow our Code of Conduct, can become Trusted Traders.
You May Like: Are Metal Roofs Hotter Than Shingles
How Climate Affects Your Roofing Choices
Theres a reason why certain materials and styles are popular in different areas.
After all, darker colors absorb heat and lighter colors reflect it, so the climate in your area matters when you are choosing what color shingles and type of roofing material that you plan to use.
Of course, lighter colors reflect the light keeping things cooler while darker colors absorb the light and keep warmth in.
And this is key in areas with colder winters like the Midwest.
You might love the look of a white roof, but a darker shade might be more energy efficient if you live in an area that gets seriously cold winters.
Its also useful to understand the natural sunlight in different areas and how that might affect the appearance of your roof.
The natural light in somewhere like Illinois or Wisconsin is very different than it is somewhere like Arizona or southern California, so keep your location in mind not only in regard to climate, but as to how the natural light will be cast and reflect on your roof and the overall colors of your home.
The local vegetation and what type of landscaping you have around your home also matter.
If you have a lot of deep green trees and bushes or other lush foliage, some colors will have a very different effect than if you are in the desert or in a tropical environment with palm trees and similar shrubbery.
This will affect your shingle color choice of course, as well as the type of roofing material that you choose.
Hiring An Unlicensed Or Uninsured Roofer
If something goes wrong whether your home suffers damage or a contractor is injured you can be left on the hook if the company is uninsured.
A reputable residential roofing company should have:
- General Liability, which protects your home if a contractor damages it while completing work.
- Workers Compensation to provide coverage if a contractor is injured on the job.
Always check credentials as youre doing your research to make sure you hire a qualified, licensedroofer.
Read Also: How Much Does Tesla Solar Roof Cost
Consider The Weather When Scheduling The Project
A damaged roof must be replaced immediately, but if yours is keeping everything Mother Nature brings from getting into the house, you can schedule a reroofing project for the near future. Summer through fall is the busiest for roofing contractors. If you can schedule yours for the spring when there are fewer contractors busy with other customers, you will probably be able to get them on your project in a more timely fashion.
Choose Someone With Lots Of Specific Experience
What sort of a roof do you have? Thatching, slate tiling and flat roof repair work all require very different sets of skills, so look out for a tradesman who has specific experience of doing similar jobs to yours.
Glen Batt of Glen Batt Roofing Ltd has been a roofer for 11 years, and has 200 positive reviews on MyBuilder. He explains:
Make sure the tradesman you hire is really experienced in doing your sort of job, particularly if its a big project – like a whole new roof.
Most roofers will be experienced in working with tiles and slates – but lots of flat roof projects include the use of fibreglass and other, more modern materials that some roofers wont have much experience of working with. So make sure you hire someone whos used those materials several times before – and preferably ask to see photos of their recent work.
Glen Batt of Glen Batt Roofing Ltd
For big roofing jobs, in particular, try to speak to a previous customer of theirs in person. Steven Cope of Scope Roofing has been working in the roofing trade since the late 1990s, and has been a member of MyBuilder since 2009. As he explains, a good roofing specialist should be happy to introduce you to previous clients:
Recommended Reading: How Often To Get Roof Replaced
Why Find A Roofer Now
Whether you require a new roof immediately or in a few years, finding a contractor early pays well. Your contractor can do routine roof repair, maintenance and inspections. Bear in mind that routine maintenance can significantly increase the life of your roof and delay the need for replacement. When the time comes for a new roof, you already know who to contact.
Once youve located a reputable roofer, you can hire the company to inspect and maintain your roof. This will assist in extending the life of your current roof. When the time comes to replace your roof, youll already be familiar with the company.
How To Spot A Bad Roofing Contractor Warning Signs To Watch Out For
There are so many horror stories about a contractor swooping in on an unsuspecting property owner, pressuring them to sign a contract, demand a large down payment and disappearing before the job is done. While those are the worst-case-scenarios, you also have to look for other red flags, like non-insured, non-local and poor communicating contractors.
Here are some red flags to watch out for when searching for a roof replacement contractor:
Read Also: Do It Yourself Metal Roofing Kits
How To Choose A Residential Roofing Contractor
This article was co-authored by GreatBuildz. GreatBuildz is a free service that matches homeowners with reliable, pre-screened general contractors. GreatBuildz was founded by a team of real estate and construction experts who believe everyone deserves to find a great contractor, have a stress-free renovation, and enjoy their beautiful new space. GreatBuildz connects homeowners with reputable contractors who passed their rigorous screening process and signed their code of conduct. GreatBuildz also individually selects contractors for the specific project and provides ongoing support to ensure everything goes smoothly. This article has been viewed 72,629 times.
When it comes to choosing a residential roofing contractor, it’s important to select an experienced contractor who can give your roof the quality it needs to keep your family and personal belongings safe from the outside elements. When choosing a roofing contractor for your home, you must seek out multiple candidates with the proper licensing and a great business reputation in your area. Continue reading to learn how you can choose a residential roofing contractor for your home.
How Long Are Roofing Nails For Shingles
Proper Nail Application For Asphalt Shingles Nails should have a minimum, nominal shank diameter of 11- or 12-gauge, and a minimum head diameter of three-eighths of an inch. The length of each nail must be a minimum of 1¼ inches long, and for roof-overs, Atlas recommends a nail length of at least 2 inches.
Also Check: Is Roof Covered By Home Warranty
Understand Your Roofing Needs And Determine What Type Of Roof You Want
Does your roof need to be repaired or completely replaced? The best roofing contractor will determine if it is more economical to replace it now or to make repairs. If your roof is 20-plus years old, theres a good chance the best decision will be to replace it. If thats the case, you have to decide what type of material youll use.
The most commonly used materials are asphalt shingles and cedar shingle. There are advantages to both, but most homeowners choose asphalt shingles, as theyre more affordable than cedar. There are other roofing needs to consider, such as the materials under the shingles or cedar that are extremely important and will need to be replaced, such as the roof deck , watershield and underlayment.
Work With An Established Local Roofing Company
Local companies know the weather and climate conditions your roof will need to withstand. You want to choose an established roofing company with a long history in the community. Companies that have been around for years, or even decades are more likely to stay in business long enough to fulfill any warranty requirements should something go wrong.
Read Also: How Are Clay Roof Tiles Attached
If You Find Rotten Roof Or Soft Roof Decking How Much Will The Plywood Cost
This can end up being one of those hidden costs that surprise homeowners as some less-than-honest roofers might not cover this as they go over the agreement with you. Youll want to know upfront how much plywood will cost you if the roofer determines it needs replaced. Ask for a dollar amount per plywood sheet, and you can use that number as you compare roofing contractors for the best savings.
Do You Carry General Liability Insurance
Workmans compensation insurance covers the roofing employees while theyre on your property, but you still have to worry about damage to your actual property as a result of work. Ask to see an insurance certificate to verify that the roofer has general liability insurance, so that in the event your roof, house, or property is damaged, you wont be responsible for covering the damage that someone else caused.
Don’t Miss: How To Calculate Roof Size
Is The Roofing Contractors Service Area Compatible
Hiring a local roofing contractor means less travel time and faster replacement. There are many advantages to hiring local, but being able to hit the timeline is important for most homeowners.
Never go into a roofing project blind. Know all your options and ask the right questions. Doing so will ensure youve got a quality roofing contractor on your side. If you have a checkmark by each of the above items, youre well on your way to making an informed decision.
Hiring A Roofer Checklist
Once you’ve decided which roofing contractor best meets your needs, you need to discuss and agree with them:
- what will happen in the event of unforeseen extra charges
- whether or not there will be any penalties if the work is finished later than anticipated
- what would happen in the event of prolonged adverse weather
- what hours the trader will work during the week, or at weekends if necessary
- what materials will be used, who will supply these, and if they come with a guarantee or not
- whether or not outsourced labour will be used
- how rubbish will be disposed of and whether that is included in the overall cost
- whether or not scaffolding will be needed and if it is included in the overall cost
- what will happen in the event of any work not meeting a satisfactory standard.
It’s always a good idea to set this down in a written contract – it doesn’t need to be complicated, just record what you agree and both sign it. Then you have a record of how you expect the work to proceed, which should protect both you and the trader.
This should be standard on all larger jobs, but is recommended even for smaller repairs. Most reputable builders will issue a contract as standard before starting work in any case.
Before your roofer starts work, you should ask to see evidence of appropriate insurance, including public liability and working at heights. If your job involves a new roof, or a major refurbishment of an existing roof, you should ask for a guarantee.
Don’t Miss: How Much To Fix A Roof Leak