The roof on your house protects you and your family from hail, snow, rain, lightning and other weather conditions. However, these tough weather conditions take their toll and there are times when the roof needs to be repaired or replaced. Thankfully, there is no dearth of roofing companies but hiring a new roofing company is not something you should take lightly.
There are all kinds of roofing companies and not every roofing company has experienced and reliable professionals who can replace or repair the roof in the right manner. Here’s a list of some of the important questions you should ask before hiring the services of a roofing company.
Q: Number of Years in the Business
It is one of the most important questions you should ask a roofing contractor before you let them work on your property. As mentioned above, anybody can open a roofing company without any kind of experience. Since this is a highly competitive business, it is difficult to stay in this business without providing good service.
Many unscrupulous business owners keep operating under a name for a few years but they change the name of the business as they keep moving around once their reputation has suffered enough. So, make sure the business has been active for quite a few years. In addition, you should also ask them about the experience of crew members who will be working on your property along with a number of years they have been in this business.
In most locations, proper licensing is needed by the city, county or state before a roofing contractor can begin working in that area. Find out the rules in your location and make sure the contractor is properly licensed and has all the required paperwork before you let them enter your property. Do not take their word for it. Ask them to share a copy of the license with you and you should check it online before signing a contract.
The roofers will get up on a ladder in order to replace the roof. It’s a dangerous job and accidents do happen. However, you want to be protected in case someone suffers an injury when they are working on your property. Without proper insurance, you may be liable. Therefore, you should check their insurance before letting them on to your property.
There are two types of insurance: general liability and worker’s compensation insurance. All the states have separate requirements when it comes to minimum general liability insurance to legally operate in that state. You can find out the insurance needed in your state by searching online.
Ask the roofing company to send you a copy of the general liability policy of the company on email. Do not take their word for it and ask them to provide a copy. The general liability insurance will protect you in case your property is damaged during construction of the roof. In many cases, homeowners insurance might not protect you. You also need to make sure that you are named as an additional insured when they are working on your property.
Worker’s compensation will protect you in case someone gets injured while working on your property. It is also a legal requirement. Similar to general liability policy, ask them to send a copy of the worker’s compensation insurance policy on email.
Q: Removal of Old Roof
You should ask them whether they will be removing the old roof. Most roofs have three layers. The top layer is made of shingles lying on the middle layer made of felt and there is plywood or decking underneath. It is important to take off the shingles as well as the felt in order to make sure that the decking isn’t flimsy or rooting.
Sometimes, roofing contractors try to cut corners by just inspecting with their eyes and they don’t take off the shingles. They just put new shingles over the old shingles. However, it can be a problem in case there is a rotten wood or soft spots beneath the old shingles. This is the reason, you should never allow a roofing company to start laying new shingles without removing the old roof.
Q: Installation of Drip Edge
It refers to a small piece of aluminum that is placed under the shingles. It is placed in a manner to allow run-off to flow into the gutters thereby protecting the wood. Without the installation of drip edge, roof may suffer water damage. Some roofing companies are in the habit of skipping over this part and you need to specifically ask them before you hire a roofing company.
Q: Use of Ladder Stabilizers for Protecting Gutters
Sometimes, roofers do not use ladder stabilizers but it can result in a torn up guttering system around the house. These stabilizers work like big arms resting on the roof that keeps your guttering system safe as the weight of the extension ladder is taken on by the roof which protects the gutters.
Q: Minimum Warranty on the New Roof
It is important that the roofing company is willing to give at least 25 years warranty.
Q: Number of Fasteners per Shingle
The standard is four nails per shingle but it can be higher as per the requirements laid down by manufacturer. It is also important to make sure that shingles are property installed. If shingles are not installed properly, it may cause many more issues including premature wear and tear, excessive moisture as well as reduce energy efficiency.
Q: Detailed Written Estimate
You need to make sure the roofing company like Armorservices.com gives you detailed written estimate. Also, the written estimate should be based on several factors including area of roof, current market price of various roofing materials, number of layers on the old roof, condition of the shingles, condition of the wood decking, known issues as well as any unexpected problems. It is important that the roofing company takes a holistic look at the existing roof before they give you an estimate.
Q: Payment Schedule
Asked about the payment schedule before signing a contract. Make sure you never make the final payment until the work is completed to your satisfaction and it should be laid down in the payment schedule.
It is important that the contract you sign with a roofing market is extremely detailed. You also need to ensure that they take responsibility for any damage caused by them during the installation of the new roof. The contract should detail all the activities including removal of the old roof and installation of the new roof among other things.