Tips for Choosing a Roofer

Purchasing a new roof is one of the most important investments you can make for your home. It can also be a big investment. With this investment, it's crucial that you receive trustworthy support and the know-how of services needed to complete the work.

When selecting a professional roofing contractor to install your new roof, consider the following:

  • Make sure the contractor has a good reputation. Check for references and call a few of them.
  • Make sure the contractor has adequate insurance coverage. Protect your home from accidental damage.
  • Did the contractor thoroughly inspect your roof? Including deck, attic, flashing, chimney, soil stacks and other roof penetrations?
  • Did the contractor provide a written estimate? Including an accurate description of the work to be performed, plus work that may have to be contracted out.
  • Did the contractor explain the entire roof system? Your roof is a series of components that work together and you should know about all of them.
  • Did the contractor check existing ventilation for proper circulation and also explain the importance of proper ventilation? Improper ventilation will damage your shingles and can invalidate your manufacturer's warranty.
  • Did the contractor know, explain and comply with local building codes? Local codes determine the maximum number of nail overs and nail overs may shorten the life of your new shingles.
  • Does the contractor know and was able to explain local building codes?
  • Did the contractor apply underlayment to the wood deck? Additional waterproofing underlayment might be needed if ice damming, wind-driven rain or collected flowing water might be a problem.
  • Did the contractor apply shingles according to manufacturer's specifications?
  • Did the contractor use proper fastening techniques? Four fastenings are required for most shingles - six in high-wind areas. Fasteners should penetrate ¾" into the deck.
  • Did the contractor commit to supervising the job during all phases of the work and inspect it thoroughly when finished?
  • Did the contractor thoroughly clean up your roof and around your house when finished? Did they remove all surplus materials? Did they leave your yard in the same shape they found it?
  • Did the contractor explain both the workmanship and manufacturer's warranty? Are defective shingles replaced for prorated replacement cost, or original cost, with labor charged additional? You should be very clear about whom to call with a problem.
  • Did the contractor use quality roofing materials? Check the product warranty plus UL fire and wind-resistance ratings. Choose a name you trust - not all shingles are the same.
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