1. First, it is always recommended to get multiple quotes. Generally 3 proposals are sufficient however sometimes more are required. Before deciding on a contractor you need to be well informed. It is critical that the roofing contractor take time and discuss with you all of the available options for your re-roof project. A good roofing contractor will ask some key questions about you and your buisness which will help him get a better feel on what you might be looking for. Questions might include, how long do you plan on occupying this building? Are you in an area of high wind? These questions will help them recommend a type of product suited specifically for you. You should never consider a product for your buisness because a roofing contractor tells you, “It’s the best” without offering an explanation as to why. In some cases business owners may already know what product they want. However a good roofing contractor should inform them of possible issues if any with the product they asked for. In some cases it just might not be suited for their application, but there needs to be a reason why. Remember, in the end the choice is always yours. So, now you have your 3 quotes. Next you must sit down and compare them all. The first order of business is to make sure that all quotes are based on equal products and services. A good way to make sure that you are comparing “Apples to Apples” is to make sure the proposals are detailed, telling you the type of materials being used, where they are being installed on the roof, if the existing roof is being removed, clean up procedures and safety methods. Your roofing contractor should be licensed, insured and the company’s workers should be OSHA compliant. This includes completing OSHA’s 10 hour safety course. A Roofing contractors employees that have completed OSHA’s 10 hour safety course are given a yellow certification card. If you have any doubts ask the roofing contractor to see them.
2. Second and equally important, Price. If all proposals are equal, all products are the same, should you as a home owner hire the contractor with the lowest price? The short answer is NO. Sounds like we are telling you that you should expect to hire companies whose proposals are higher than their competitor’s right? No, what we are telling you is that price should never be what makes you decide on which contractor to hire. Ok, let’s face the facts; everyone wants the best price that they can get no matter what they are buying. So, how do you justify spending more money for a roof from one contractor than another when all materials and products are equal? Let’s look at it this way. Cell phone companies, most all of them carry the exact same products as their competitors. So why do people pay more for their cell phones when they know there are carriers out there that can give them the product that they want but are less expensive? The answer is simple, service. All things being equal in product, the last item to compare is service whether its quality of work or overall customer service and satisfaction. Unfortunately when you hire a roofing contractor the service they may neglect to give you may not be as easy to recognize as how many dropped calls you experience or the frequency of dead zones your phone falls victim too. However their professionalism, support and customer service should be very easy to see. ABC roofing contractor may have given you the lowest price but are they the right contractor for you? Ask yourself, how does this contractor make you feel about hiring them? Are they informed? Are they qualified? Do they answer questions directly or do they seem to sway away from certain topics. Do they give you all of your options or does it seem like they are partial to only one or two? How long have they been in business for? Will they be around next year if you need repairs or service, or are they a “fly by night” company? If you have carefully and thoroughly compared all proposals and made sure all items are equal between them and there are no discrepancies. Then how you choose which roofing contractor you hire should be based on the overall impression that a company left on you, not the lowest price. In some cases that particular company just might be the one with the lowest price. That isn’t always the end result in this process, but I can tell you with certainty that the end result in any business expense whether it be improvement, repair or replacement is…you absolutely get what you pay for. Re-roofing your business may be one of the single largest projects you do to your property in the time that you own it. Make sure that the contractor that you hire takes as much pride in their work as you take in yours. Top
A. There are many variables that impact the price of replacing your roof. When you receive a proposal from a contractor it should be based on how many square feet of roof area you are replacing. Factors that play an important role in cost are, the type of material if any that will be removed, the materials you want to replace the roof with, access to the roof, the height of your building, permits, material tax and waste disposal. Top
A. Depending on the state you live in there are laws that have limits as to how many times you can go over an old roof with a new one. Another important factor is weight, would going over your existing roof add too much weight to what is there? This could make for a potentially hazardous work environment. Ask your local contractor or better yet check with your state building code office so you are well informed before you make any decisions. While there are advantages to going over your old roof with the new one (cheaper in labor, faster, less materials used), there are things that should be considered before making that decision.
1. First, what is the condition of the roof you want to go over? Are the existing materials too damaged, wet or might there be hidden damage below them?
2. Can you see that the roof is sagging? This can mean that the roof decking is saturated, rotted and or deteriorated and would need to be replaced before a new roof can be installed. Top
A. Of course in some cases it most certainly can. A qualified contractor should always recommend that he or she should inspect your roof before the decision is made to make repairs to it. The contractor and business owner should conduct an outside and inside inspection. Look for signs that tell the contractor that the roof is failing. Are there stains on ceilings or peeling paint? Are there any cracks or splits in the existing roof material? Does the roof itself feel spongy when you walk on it? Also consider the age of the current roof. Is your roof 20 years old or older, or was it just replaced only a few years ago?
If your roof is well within its lifespan and you are not seeing any other warning signs chances are good repairing a problem area will be sufficient. Top
A. When dealing with a commercial property, a roofing manufacturer’s warranty is always available. These warranties range from 10 to 30 years depending on manufacture and material type, and are available to include, labor, material or both. The cost for these warranties will vary depending on which one you choose. This cost should be included in the quotes you receive from your contractors. A good contractor will inform you of all the available warranties for the roof system they are pricing for you. However it is always good practice for the business owner to ask the roofing contractor prior to signing an agreement. Top
A. Commercial roofing contractor should be able to at any time provide their customers with a Certificate of Insurance for both liability and Worker's Compensation and a business owner has the right to request these documents before any work begins on your building. Property owners should stay clear of any roofing company that does not or cannot provide these documents upon request. Top
A. This is a good question to ask any roofing contractor that you might be considering for your project. There are a number of roofing associations for contractors to be part of. A roofing contractors credibility is based on many things, one being their commitment to the roofing industry. This could be a good tool in determining if a contractor is right for your project. Top
A. Some of the more common roofing associations are, NRCA (National Roofing Contractors Association), NERCA (New England Roofing Contractors Association) and ABC (Associated Builders and Contractors, Inc.). Top
A. Obviously longer is usually better than shorter. It’s a good idea to find a roofing contractor that has been in business for a while. One should question why ABC contractor has been in business less than two years. This is a very real concern as it may signal an unstable business. Of course everybody has to start sometime and maybe that is the case with them. One option in determining if that is true is to request references. It is more than reasonable to request referrals when considering a roofing contractor that has been in business for a short time. Top
A. Anybody can make repairs to their roof without calling a roofing contractor. Most of the materials needed to make repairs can be found at national chain stores or building supply warehouses. However, we do not recommend that a property owner take on this task. There are strict procedures that must be followed to properly repair a roof and these procedures vary depending on the existing material that is present. OSHA’s safety guidelines are required by law and fall protection is a must. Emergency services are available if needed. In the end it is always safer to call an insured, professional roofing company to do this work. Top
A. Roof replacement is a labor intensive project depending on the size of the job it can take as little as a week to as long as a month or more to complete. Weather plays an important part in the time involved. Snow, wind, rain or even the threat of rain can delay a project considerably. Top
A. Yes, you most definitely will. When obtaining a proposal for a roof replacement make sure the contractor has included a permit. Top
A. In most cases there should be no added costs to your proposal. However there are exceptions that should be considered. An unforeseen condition is damage that remains hidden until it is exposed. However, in most cases conducting a thorough inspection prior to submitting a proposal should give roofing contractor a good idea whether there might be hidden damage lurking below your old roof. In rare instances this damage sometimes cannot be detected or seen during the inspection and reveals itself when the old roof is removed. In either case your contractor should address the cost and work involved in repairing damage that might be unseen in his proposal, prior to starting his work. Top
A. If you know you have masonry walls in need of repair we recommend that it is either done before or during the reroofing project. Depending on the extent of the repair it may be best coordinating this work between your mason and your roofing contractor to ensure that both the roof and masonry is repaired properly. If you are unsure we recommend contacting a professional mason to help you decide. Top
A. Most solar panels are bolted or mounted through the existing roof material in some way and must be removed before a new roof can be installed. Solar panels may require a plumber, electrician or both to ensure proper removal and reinstallation. This work should be coordinated and scheduled before your roofing contractor starts his project. Top