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The roof of a building is as important as any other part of the structure. It serves multiple purposes including providing protection from weather effects, insulation, shelter from insects & critters.
Hence, any repairs on the roofs need to be addressed as soon as possible. Recently, the trend of DIY repairs has been widely adopted owing to the cost-effectiveness but requires high skills.
This should be avoided at every cost for roof repairs as it can do more harm compared to the money saved.
So, when it comes to hiring the right roofing contractor, you need to be really careful about choosing someone who is certified to handle the work and won’t ruin an existing worse condition further.
Right from checking insurance and licenses to asking for references, there is a step by step approach in shortlisting the ideal contractors and eventually finding the right roofing contractor.
Sit back as we break down the individual steps you can follow to choosing the right roofing contractor in Texas.
Steps for Choosing the Right Roofing Contractor
Step 1. Opt for a local roofing contractor
When it comes to roof repairs and replacement services, opt for a local contractor. Not only will you be promoting local businesses, opting for a local roofing contractor allows you to cut down on the project turnover time, costs, and you can easily check their work reputation.
In case of any leaks or emergency repairs, a local roofing contractor would be quick to respond. In addition to having knowledge about the local building codes and regulations, local contractors also have partnerships with local hardware stores and lumber mills, so you can get exclusive discounts on the materials (i.e., reduction in the project cost).
The advancements in local SEO has allowed searching for local roofing contractors online a much easier task. Based on the search location, the search engine platform will recommend results based on credibility.
You can also post your requirements in the local community and build a list based on the recommendations and connections.
Step 2. Ask for credibility and Reputation
Once you have a list prepared, it is time to weed out potential bad decisions based on credibility. What you need is someone who will stand by their reputation as much as their work.
You need someone who has been in the community long enough to be recognized. Google and other search engine platforms have made it easy for searching for reputable roofing contractors.
A custom profile for any business is created by default and contractors can claim their business listing by providing on those search engine platforms and update the existing Name, registered Address, and Phone number i.e. NAP information.
The profiles on other platforms such as Angie’s List, Home Advisor, Thumbtack, BBB, Yelp, Facebook can be linked to this profile, which greatly helps in the search visibility.
On being searched for a specific keyword, only those contractors with the complete profile are displayed. These profiles also display the recent reviews from existing customers so use this tactic to trim out ‘storm chaser’ contractors.
These types of contractors tend to set up their base in an area freshly hit by a natural disaster and take up projects related to roof repairs and other construction projects.
They get the work done and later head off to a new location when a natural disaster strikes. You may or may not get good workmanship but you can’t avail warranty as the contractor would be hard to contact once on the move.
While browsing through the reviews, don’t just focus on the positive reviews; carefully read the negative reviews and identify the reason for dissatisfaction.
The Contractor’s response to the reviews is a positive indication of someone who cares about what their customers think.
Step 3. Contemplate Price v/s Value
Once you have a few handfuls of contractors left, it is time to compare price v/s value. Human tendency dictates that we choose the cheapest available option but it might not always be the right choice, especially in roofing and construction.
In roof repairs, what you pay is what you get and if the price difference is significant, the contractors would be cutting corners in material quality, labour costs, or warranty duration.
To be on the safe side, it is important to ask the important questions that help you get a breakdown of the costs.
Ask for Insurance, License & Permits
State laws mandate any roofing company or contractor to have functioning worker compensations and liability insurances that protect you from any damages during repairs.
Worker compensations cover any injuries or fatality owing to workplace accidents and protects both the employer and employees.
Liability insurance covers your property in case of any breakage or damage from the roof repairs. A reputed roof contractor should be able to provide copies of both, if and when demanded.
When it comes to licensing and permit, the laws change for every state. In Texas, the Roofing Contractors Association of Texas, an independent organization, regulates all the roofing license process and requirements.
The certificate fees for appropriate licensing and exam fees can range from $450 to $950. The criteria fulfilment for availing roofing permits is as per the Roofing Contractors Association of Texas (RCAT)
- The contractor is a Texas residential and commercial roofing company for a minimum of three years
- Should be able to submit satisfactory credit and business references
- Provide designated insurance coverage certificates
- Registered in Better Business Bureau
- Pass a licensing exam consisting of a basic business and safety knowledge
- Have a notarized application form
When it comes to availing insurance on the roofing materials, it is mandated to be installed by a certified installer. The roofing contractor needs to be a certified installer in order to be eligible for insurance claims in the future.
Study the Warranty conditions
The fine print is an attorney’s playground and so it is important to study the estimation as well as the warranty conditions before moving ahead with hiring the contractor.
Check for price breakdowns for the materials used, labour costs, and post-installation services. Is the contractor considering the buffer for any unforeseen repairs that may pop out while working?
Will they manage all the post-installation debris? What will the payment schedule be? Take the time to go through the warranty document to understand the coverage and the post-installation repairs or services.
Ask if they are providing a manufacturer warranty or workmanship warranty. The manufacturer’s warranty covers any defects in the roofing materials and the warranty doesn’t cover any defects in the roof once the house is sold.
Workmanship warranty covers the roof from any defects arising from manual labour for a significant duration.
Step 4. Manually inspect past repairs
By this stage, you may be contemplating choosing between 2 or 3 roofing contractors. It is time to go on an inspection ride.
Talk to past customers about the work quality and ask if you can physically inspect the repairs or if they can share photographs of the work done.
By now, you should be capable of making an educated choice, and going with your intuition is a good option.
Step 5. Ask for the Project Timeline
Congratulations! By following the tips above, you should have boiled down to the right roofing contractor, and all it remains is asking for the project timeline and signing the agreement based on it.
An ideal roofing contractor is someone who has a legitimate business address, has all the valid documents & permits, is a certified roof installer, and provides all communications in writing. We hope this article guides you in selecting the right roofer.