Posts

4 Must-Ask Questions for Your Roofing Experts

When it comes time to repair or replace your roof—and if you own a home or building long enough, that time will eventually come—there are key questions you’ll want to ask your roofing experts before you sign on the dotted line.

You can already imagine that the top question anyone would have about this service is, “How much will it cost?” It’s a great question and one you should definitely discuss. Comparing quotes is an important part of the hiring process. Hire a company with a low-ball offer and you’re going to get what you pay for. Hire at the top range and you’ll feel like you’re getting ripped off.

But since you already know to ask about cost, let’s skip this and provide you with four other must-ask questions we know our customers don’t always remember.

1.Will You Need to Remove My Roof & What is the Cost?

Any reputable company will likely not be able to answer if your roof needs to be replaced or if it can just be repaired from a phone call alone. If you are having an issue, you should want your roofing expert to request a home visit to assess the problem before answering this question. This assessment should be free of charge and take place before you agree to any work or pay any funds.

Once your roof has been properly inspected, a keen roofing expert should be able to tell you whether or not your roof needs to be removed and replaced with a completely new roof. If this is the case, make sure this is a service the company provides and ask if it’s an added charge.

If you’ve selected one of the best roofing companies in town, the price should already be included in the cost of the new roof, and the workers should be able to take on the project from start to finish.

2. Do You Perform the Work or Hire Subcontractors?

When you select a company to perform a service, you expect that company to complete every aspect of the agreed-to project. However, when it comes to home improvement and maintenance projects, that’s not always how companies operate.

On occasion, companies will complete a sale and then pass along the project to someone else to do the actual work, each taking a cut of the profits. Sometimes it’s a legitimate and amiable business partnership. But other times the company doing the hiring knows little to nothing about the quality of service by the company completing the work. Roofing service is one of the industries where you’ll find this practice.

In order to protect yourself and ensure you’re receiving the customer service you deserve and the quality of work you think you’re agreeing to, ask the roofing experts you’re about to hire if they work with subcontractors.

If the answer is yes, ask for more details. This should be a red flag but not necessarily a deal breaker.

3. Do You Work with Specific Manufacturers? Who?

In all home improvement projects—and many other industries—there is a manufacturer (the actual creator of the product) and a distributor (retail store, roofing company, etc.). This partnership often benefits everyone.

On the business end, the creator can do what it does best, while the distributor can focus on what it does best. And, as the consumer, you can get the projects and services you want, and when and where you want them.

In the roofing industry, it’s very similar. A manufacturer, CertainTeed for example, allows specific, trained, certified contractors to sell its products. Now, CertainTeed prides itself on being one of the top shingle roofing manufacturers in the country, so they aren’t going to let just anyone sell their offerings. Instead, they handpick companies across the states that they know value quality and customer service as much as they do. In the Portland area, Interstate Roofing is one of its distributors and a top contractor in that region.

It’s actually a great thing if the roofing experts you’re speaking with work with high-quality manufacturers. The products they offer can show a lot about the quality of work you should expect.

4. Are You Licensed, Bonded, & Insured?

Certainly, you’ve heard to ask this question before, but when it comes down to it, do you actually ask all home maintenance workers if their company is licensed, bonded, and insured? If so, that’s awesome! Keep up the great work.

But, for many of us, if everything else seems to align, we often just assume that since the company seems reputable, it must have everything in order. While that’s likely the case, this assumption could be a costly mistake.

If anything should go wrong and you did not specifically confirm that the company you hired had the right paperwork needed to perform the work, you could be on the hook. Since roofing work is inherently dangerous given the heights of the projects, this isn’t unforeseeable. That means if a worker is injured on your property, you could be responsible for the medical bills.

Roofing projects are commonly expensive undertakings. The work is arduous and requires the right skills, the product needs to be high quality, and the project is time-consuming. It’s expensive for a reason. But don’t make it even more costly by forgetting to ask if a company is licensed, bonded, and insured. All three should be required by you before you agree to anything, and definitely before you sign anything.

Don’t fret that a company will be annoyed by this question. The best ones welcome it, as they are glad to show they are the right ones to choose for your roofing project.

Hiring a roofing expert can take some time, but the finished product and quality customer service you receive will be well worth the wait.

Five Questions to Ask Portland Roofing Contractors Before Choosing a Company

As a homeowner, it’s inevitable that at some point you’ll need to get in touch with Portland roofing contractors to determine who should fix or maybe even replace your roof. It’s also in our nature to not have a company front of mind when your roof starts to leak seemingly out of nowhere. But, even in a roofing emergency, it’s important to question at least a handful of local companies to determine who you should hire.

While it can be stressful to find a last minute roofer, if you ask the right questions, you will certainly find a company who is qualified to handle the task at hand.

To get you started, here are five questions you should ask Portland roofing contractors before making a final hiring decision:

Do you offer a warranty on the work performed and the roofing materials?

Most professional roofers will provide some version of a warranty, but it’s important to get the details of your coverage beforehand. For example, while one roofer may provide a workmanship warranty, this company may not be able to offer a manufacturer’s warranty.

At Interstate Roofing, we work closely with the top manufacturers in the industry and can provide product warranties on behalf of each. We also provide various workmanship warranties that include tear-off costs and flashing replacements.

While you hope to never have to use a warranty, if you select a company that does not offer at least the industry standard, then you are putting yourself at risk for shelling out large sums of money just a few short years after investing in your roof replacement.

Also, make sure to get the warranty in writing before committing to a company. That way you can closely compare the offerings and have proof of purchase if something does go awry.

Can I see pictures of work that you’ve completed that is similar to my project?

If you call a random Portland roofing contractor and hire the first person you speak with it’s 50-50 whether the work will be to your liking. For this reason, it’s important to know if the company you’re interested in has completed roofing projects similar to the one you’re requesting.

If your house has gables or a steep pitch, will your contractor know how to properly and safely navigate that type of roofline? Or, maybe you are looking for Portland roofing contractors who are experts in flat, commercial roofs. Either way, ask to see proof of past work.

While this may sound like you can’t trust the person you’re speaking with when he or she says the company has ample experience, you still must ask. In fact, contractors expect these types of questions and will not mind one bit. And, if someone does seem perturbed by your queries, then it’s not the company for you.

Are your past customers happy with your work? Can you direct me to reviews?

If you are calling Portland roofing contractors to perform work on your roof, you’re going to want to hire someone who other people would also recommend. Great resources beyond a company’s website where you can read reviews include Facebook, Google, Yelp, Angie’s List, and more, and that’s likely where a company will direct you, but it’s still important to ask.

Again, it may seem strange to ask, but great companies are proud to boast about their rave reviews and the excellent work they’ve completed. They want to show off their latest projects and share how they surpassed customers’ expectations both in workmanship and professionalism.

This question allows the company representative to share the many reasons why you should select that company over another and may even be the tipping point on whether it’s the one you ultimately choose.

Do you offer roof maintenance services?

While this may seem strange to be among our top five questions as you’re focused on the immediate problem at hand and not whether or not you want a roof cleaning each year, it is definitely an important one to ask.

It may feel trivial at this moment, but long term you will want to select Portland roofing contractors who you can contact any time something comes up, not just once every ten to twenty years when you need a roof replacement.

You can easily find a one and done company, but if you want to ensure you’re placing a quality product on your home with a top-notch local company, then you’ll want to know they’re going to be around to call when something comes up.

How do you maintain a safe working environment?

Again, this may not seem relevant, but it speaks volumes about a company culture. You don’t just want to hire a company that throws people up on roofs with abandon and considers their employees as replaceable. You want a company that puts the safety and health of their employees among their top priorities.

Working on a roof is inherently dangerous, so you’ll learn a lot when you ask this question. At Interstate Roofing, we’ll tell you we provide:

  • Thorough safety orientation training for all new employees.
  • Pre-job safety plans on all projects
  • Frequent on-site safety inspections
  • Formal accident investigations
  • Certified CPR and First Aid training
  • Generous safety incentives
  • And more

At Interstate Roofing, we value our employees—some of whom have been with us since our founding in 1988—so we put in place high standards to ensure each individual stays and remains safe on each project site.

This list of five questions is by no means comprehensive. Other questions you should certainly ask include pricing, company history, environmental considerations, proper insurance and licensing, and any specifics related to your project at hand.

All top Portland roofing contractors who take pride in their work and their company will be glad to address these and any other questions you have so that you—the consumer—can make an informed decision.

At Interstate Roofing, we looking forward to working with you and can’t want to answer the many questions you might have for us. Reach out today!