Perhaps you picked your automobile mechanic based on friends’ recommendations. You probably picked your life partner using a mental checklist. How do you choose your roofing contractor? One way to find the best roofer is to jot down a group of desirable qualities, then see who meets your expectations. Look at your To-Do list today and cross off, “How to choose a contractor for the roof,” because we are going to show you how, with 10 easy, tangible terms.
1, 2, 3: Papers
Three important qualities are also not the most spectacular, sexiest, or stunning: paperwork. Your prospective roofer should have these basic papers in order and ready to show you:
- All required local and state licenses to operate as a roofer, plus proof of proper insurance such as Workers Compensation and liability protection; these pieces of evidence protect you, the homeowner, from lawsuits and workers’ liens
- A complete written estimate that includes a Scope of Work, which is a detailed description of the work to be done, the materials that will b used, and their line-item cost; this detailed estimate lets you compare competitive bids from at least three roofers
- The strongest, longest-lasting warranties for the roof system you desire or need for your home; warranties can include manufacturers’ warranties against defects, manufacturers’ warranties covering installation errors, and workmanship warranties issued by the roofing contractor, with only the very best roofers offering the very best warranties
4, 5, 6: Work Ethic
Every interaction with a roofing contractor and the company’s many employees is an opportunity for you to assess the company culture. Look for these three hallmarks of a good work ethic:
- The roofing company’s representative visiting your central Kentucky home for a first inspection should be expected to climb onto the roof (safely; never attempt that yourself), crawl into your attic, and examine every part of your complete roof system carefully; the inspection should include video or photographic evidence of problems
- The roofing crew should be factory-trained in the roof system you have on your home already or are wanting to have installed; some unscrupulous roofers collect day laborers who have no skills in roofing, simply to lower their labor costs, with the result that the roof installation is shoddy and likely to leak
- All team members of a roofing contractor’s company should demonstrate good communication skills, from answering telephone calls politely to taking messages, returning calls, and providing clear answers to your questions; you should never feel like you, the customer, are a nuisance or are not a priority
7, 8: Neighborly
Good Kentucky roofers are members of the community. They garner awards and show local pride. Look for these two traits indicating a dedication to your neighborhood:
- The roofing company has a local, physical address and a long history of superior work in your area; having a physical address means the roofer is not a storm-chaser or out-of-state scammer — if necessary, you have a place to go with your concerns, compliments, or complaints
- Good roofers are proud of their work, so feel free to ask for customer reviews, references you can contact, or a gallery of finished work; ask your friends, extended family, and neighbors if they have worked with the prospective roofer and what their opinions are of the roofer’s work, crew, and company
9, 10: Bottom Line
The best roofing materials and finest installation mean nothing if you cannot afford them. A good roofing contractor does not try to price-gouge customers. Good roofers hope to create long-term customers for matters such as roof maintenance, minor repair, or new projects. Look for these two financial features that are hallmarks of a good roofer:
- The roofing contractor does not require full payment up front; honest roofers with solid finances require only one-third of the total estimate when the contract is signed, another third when the project begins, and the final third when the job is complete and inspected
- The estimate and final costs are in line with your expectations and are fair for the work performed; one contractor may cost a bit more than another, but selecting the least-expensive roofer is unlikely to leave you satisfied, since great service and years of experience are worth paying a bit extra to get
Just as a roofer uses a punch list to address all the minor details when finishing up a job, you can create your own checklist or punch list to make sure you got the same information, and the same level of honest detail, from the three roofers you interview. A roof replacement is a big job with a lot of money at stake. You and your Kentucky home deserve the best roofer you can afford.
AIC Roofing & Construction, Inc. can save you time and headache in your search for the best roof in central Kentucky. Contact us today to allow us the privilege of proving ourselves to you.
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