Use this 5-point checklist!
One of the biggest sources of concern homeowners often have is choosing the right roofing company to look after their roof’s construction or repairs.
With so much at stake, we understand why it can seem like a difficult task, but we’re here to help.
Follow this handy checklist to find a roofing company you can trust and depend on.
1. Find recommendations
You should never discount word-of-mouth, especially if the source is friends or family—people you trust. A good roofing company will be proud of the work they do and will happy to show you a portfolio of their work.
Some customers won’t want the company to give out personal information, but you may be able to find reviews on Yelp or Google Maps.
Follow up with references and check out the work they do and how happy previous customers are.
2. Check credentials
Always check that the company has full credentials.
Make sure the roofing company is local in Oregon and an established part of the community: Is there a full company name, location (if it’s a P.O. Box, ask for the physical address), and respectable website? Are they also active on social media?
Ask when the business was founded, and how many years of experience they have. A company established many years ago is more likely to still be around if this goes wrong with your roof in a few years’ time.
A roofing company in Oregon has to be licensed so you know they’re qualified: you can check the license of the company on the Construction Contractors’ Board. (Our license number for Keith Green Construction in Portland, Oregon, is 109148). Make sure the name of the company matches the address on the quote they give you.
3. Ask to see their insurance
Every roofing company should have workers’ compensation and liability insurance. Workers’ compensation protects you in case there’s an accident on your property when the contractors are working, while liability insurance protects your home in case there’s damage to your property during the construction or repairs.
Some homeowners already have insurance, but it probably won’t cover these types of accidents, so you want to make sure the company has these two types of insurances.
4. Confirm there’s a warranty
A good roofing company won’t hesitate to guarantee their work: they stand by their workmanship and materials, so always ask what kind of warranty they provide for their roofing work.
Included in the written warranty should be details of how long the company guarantees their work, and whether materials and labor are both covered. Check to see whether one or both are included, and for how long.
Typically, the materials will be covered by the manufacturer, and the roofing company will cover the labor, for up to a year.
5. Review the estimate in detail
To do their job properly, a roofing company needs to know all the details of the project before giving you an estimate. When you first contact a roofing company, beware of any that give you quick quotes without asking for details.
You can prepare in advance some of this information by letting them know, for example, the condition and materials of your roof (tile? shingle? wood?): give them an idea of the shape and type of damage or construction needed.
It’s normal for a roofing company to give you an estimate rather than a quote, as they won’t really know what kind of condition your roof’s substructure might be in until they really get in there. But they’ll have a good idea of how much it’ll cost to replace or construct a roof with the right details.
It’s common also for big jobs for a roofing company to come and do a site inspection before they give you an estimate or quote. Site inspections can often be free, but others may charge you and deduct the amount from the final payment.
When you’re reviewing the estimate, make sure you understand what the payment terms, dates, and methods are. Everything should be broken down in detail, and you should know everything that is and—more importantly—everything that isn’t included. Beware of any company that asks to be paid in full before they’ve completed the job.
You should have a good understanding of how long the project will take and how many people will be working on it, and on what days/times. The roofing company should be able to speak your language and explain everything clearly.
Lastly, the company should give you an idea of what happens in case of unforeseen damage or other charges that could crop up. You should also know what happens if there’s really bad weather (like there can be in Oregon in winter), and
- how discarded materials 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.
We hope these tips will help you feel more comfortable making those first steps of contacting roofing companies and avoid the pitfalls of choosing an unprofessional roofing contractor.
At Keith Green Construction, we’ll never pressure you into anything and we’re here to guide you through your roofing and home renovation projects. We believe in good communication with clients, so if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to pick up the phone: we’ll be delighted to go through everything in detail with you.