Everybody has advice on picking a contractor for your home’s most valuable feature, the roof. Why is the roof the most valuable part of your home? Every other part of your home is beneath it! A weak or leaky roof leads to ruined furnishings, unhealthy family members and pets, and expensive repairs. Here are 7 key indicators that you can trust your home in the hands of a fantastic roofing company.
1. Are you local to me?
The place your roofer chooses for a business hub is important. We all know our neighbors benefit when we shop locally, and we benefit, too. The same is true for roofers — go with a local, reliable, community-centered roofer and you will have somewhere to go if the job encounters challenges.
Pick a storm chaser, a branch of a national company, or Chuck in a truck (a handyman with no physical address), and where will you go if something goes wrong?
Look for a contractor with strong roots in your community. Victors Roofing, for example, is a family business committed to serving Michigan residents from our Canton offices.
Our current business license (#2104196971; you can look it up) was granted in 2010. We will keep it current so we can continue to provide quality, superior customer service. Can all prospective roofers you interview for roof repair, maintenance or replacement say the same thing?
2. Can you hear me?
Communication and availability are crucial for a successful roofing contractor to monitor a residential roofing job. Does the roofer provide an on-site manager, to whom you can turn for answers? Are you forced to leave messages on a machine — messages that are never returned?
3. Do you have the paperwork?
Good local contractors abide by the rules. They are licensed, they carry insurance, they protect their workers. Think of the attention to detail and the work ethic this shows. You want a roofer who sweats the details, right?
Ask any potential roofer for proof of:
- License — Victors Roofing proudly holds Michigan roofing License #2104196971
- Insurance — This includes worker’s compensation insurance and liability protection so you, the homeowner, do not find yourself in the middle of a legal dispute over an injured worker
- Guarantees offered — An oral promise is legally meaningless; get a guarantee, such as Victors Roofing’s up to 50-year, No Leak Guarantee, in writing.
- Warranties — The last piece of paperwork to prize is the warranty. Make certain you are dealing with a company able to provide manufacturers’ warranties, and inquire about installation warranties, too. The best roofers earn manufacturers’ best warranties, such as the 50-year manufacturer warranty Victors Roofing can offer from Atlas.
When arranging for work (whether small repair or a complete roof replacement), get everything in writing. That paperwork will be valuable in spelling out exactly what the scope of work involves.
4. Do you provide realistic bids?
Beware of the lowball bidder on a residential roofing job. The enticing estimate will balloon quickly. Look to the mid-range bid of a reputable, local roofing contractor and compare upwards, not down.
A fantastic roofing contractor will provide a written estimate, with realistic figures for materials, crew time and a financial schedule.
5. Are you a team player?
The best local roofing contractor engages and keeps the best local crew members. Before letting a contractor’s crew on your roof and property, make sure they have training, experience working together, and safety equipment to get the job done correctly.
Ask to see photographs and read customer testimonials. Ask for addresses of nearby, recent work so you can drive by and check out the roofs yourself.
Do lines run crisp and straight? Is exposed flashing gleaming and uniform? Ask about the latest job, one the roofer may still be working on, and swing by to check it out safely from the street.
Are the bushes and landscaping protected? Is the crew working in harmony? Do they seem proud of the roofing work they are performing?
Some contractors hire unskilled day laborers. Do you want your house to be their on-the-job training?
6. How soon can you start?
Although it would be unrealistic to publish a standard answer to this question, it’s one every homeowner naturally wants to know, so here are some general guidelines to give you the best answer possible before you call us. We will say up front that you will have an exact answer to that question when you get a proposal from us.
There are some seasonal consistencies to help give you an idea what to expect:
- In the winter and early spring, we can usually install your new roof within 1-2 weeks
- In the late spring, summer, and fall, you should expect about 2-4 weeks to have your new roof installed
There are rare occasions where we can schedule your roof for the next day, but we are a one day roofing company, not a next day roofing company. It should be noted that companies who are too anxious to get your roof done quickly tend to also be the ones you shouldn’t hire. Reputable roofers are not desperate for work and you should expect similar lead times for any of them.
7. What about building permits?
The two most common questions we get about permits for a roofing project are:
- Will I need a building permit for a new roof?
- If so, who will be pulling the permit?
Let’s proceed to answer those questions.
Will I need a building permit for a new roof?
The short answer is most likely. Our average is about 80% of the time a permit is required. To answer definitively, it depends on the city or township of your home. We can however simplify it for you. If required, it will be part of your proposal automatically when we quote your roof. You’ll never have to worry about hidden charges but we can’t promise the same thing with other roofers.
Even though you won’t have to worry about the process, here are a few bits of information you may be interested in knowing about. Most municipalities require a final inspection which we will make you aware of in advance of doing your project. Sometimes, an “open roof inspection” is also required to assure proper compliance under your shingles.
No matter what kind of permits and inspections are required, Victors Roofing will have you breathing a sigh of relief you won’t have to be concerned about it.
Who will be pulling any required permit?
We take care of all permits and arrange any necessary inspections. Pulling the permit is also included in our estimate. Not only do we have great working relationships with the permit authorities, we are experienced and familiar with pulling permits so there is less stress for you!
A good roofing company begins with a strong foundation. The roof protecting your greatest investment, your family home, needs a qualified roofing contractor protecting it. When looking for a local, reputable roofing contractor for your Michigan residence, please contact us at Victors Roofing. We look forward to protecting the roof that protects your home.