How to Find a Good Roofing Company in 7 Easy, Proven Steps
The time for a roof repair or roof replacement has come and you are wondering how to find the right company for your project. Where do you start, how do you know who is the right one for you. After all, you are the boss who is looking for a job candidate, and someone with the right attributes should win your business. There are many factors that a homeowner may need to take in consideration while picking a good roofing company and we are going to discuss this in detail. Here are some great guides based on your needs so you can get make the best decision
Are You Shopping for High Quality Or Low Price
Price is important but don’t shop solely on that as your most important filter. In a perfect world you would ideally want both low price and high quality, but unfortunately in many service industries and especially in roofing these two factors are usually not realistic. In roofing you really will get what you pay for. Especially in Texas where there are no government regulations for roofing contractors at the state level nor at the city level. Anyone can literally become a roofer the next day in Texas. A Roofing job requires training in the materials that are being used. Most low price roofers are not trained. They can make all kinds of mistakes such as bad shingle fastening, no use of proper starter and other important components. Bad quality workmanship to name a few. But the list goes on. A low price roofer will not be there for you if something needs to be repaired due to a warranty call months or years later. The level of professionalism in a high quality roofing company can be checked easily by doing research online.
If I were looking for a roofer at this time and wanted to make sure I get the best quality, these are the minimum things I’d be checking for. Here is how to how to pick a good roofing company.
1. Get 2 to 3 Estimates
Getting many estimates or more than 3 will only confuse your mind with so many variables and options that may paralice you. Sticking to 3 will make it easier to decide
2. Ask for Proof of Liability Insurance
All 3 bids must come from companies that are insured for a minimum of $500,000 in general liability insurance. Don’t be afraid to ask for this. It is your right to know. A good company will always be insured. You can go as far as to ask for a copy of their insurance certificate. Then call the insurance provider that appears on the certificate to make sure they are in fact insured. An uninsured company may charge cheaper but your risks as a homeowner will be in the thousands of dollars that you’d have to compensate them in case of accidents. Roofing is one of the industries with the highest risks for accidents. With slips and falls as the highest in the list according to Bureau of Labor Statistics of the US department of Labor
3. Check Their Online Ratings
Are they well rated online on sites such as Google, Yelp, Angie’s list, The Better Business Bureau, Yahoo Etc ? If you skip this step you are doing a disservice to yourself. If you really want to hire the best, call companies with ratings no less than 5 stars. A roofing company that has maintained a perfect 5 star online rating will always provide you with the highest customer service and quality. That is because a perfect 5 star rating is difficult to achieve and maintain. Roofing companies pay a lot of attention about their online reputation. Thanks to that they also get a lot more business. Ratings are crucial for a company nowadays and they won’t do anything that can jeopardize that rating. On the other hand a company with 4.9 rating or lower does not care if their score receives another bad review and lower it to 4.8 or lower. It won’t make any difference to their already imperfect score. Ultimately, we advise against choosing companies with bad ratings or not enough presence online. Being an accredited business with the BBB is also very important. Yelp ratings are also great. Yelp has more strict guidelines for reviews. Therefore, the reviews on Yelp have high value.
4. Physical Location (a must have)
Do they have a physical location in a commercial area? Or is their address at a residential home? A reputable company will never have a home as their address. They have an office or place of business that can be verified easily. This is important because if something goes wrong you know where to find them. Don’t overlook this factor.
5. Ask for Business Card
Is their business card very basic, or vague? If it only shows their name and/or business name, an email and a mobile number, run away as fast as you can. Anyone can create fake emails, or get a secondary number. A business card of a professional roofer must show: their physical address, a company phone number, the roofer’s cell phone number, a website, and a way to verify reviews or online presence. This info is crucial and could be your leverage in case things go south. You must be able to verify the business card’s information online. It will make it easy to have strong leverage against a bad guy, company or a roofing job gone wrong.
6. Check References
This can be done by reading their online reviews. Are they credible or hyped? Are they positive, do they show photos of previous jobs on their website or online. Be sure to check for real photos. I would pay special attention to before and after photos. Do not be ok with stock photos. There is no reason why a reputable business would not have plenty of photos of previous jobs to show. But if you want to be more flexible and give that a pass try asking for numbers and addresses of previous customers at least. Making random calls may not be welcomed by clients, that’s why we recommend the online verification method. At this day and age most roofers should have verifiable online presence already.
7. Get A Detailed Estimate and Presentation
A roof is one of the highest ticket items in a home. Unless you have a tiny home, the average roof replacement job could cost an average of $10,000 but as high as 3 to 4 times that for much bigger homes. Getting a detailed estimate without vague information is key. Then compare the 3 and ask questions. An example of a vague item could be “ remove and replace shingles”. But what kind of shingles are they installing, what brand, what’s their wind rating, manufacturer’s warranty, etc. Don’t rush this process. A presentation in person to show you different types of materials and options is really important. You are making a big investment that will hopefully last you for the next 20 or more. Take your time and demand a high level of service.
Is being a Licensed Contractor A Real Thing in Texas?
To be clear, the state of Texas, nor cities currently require roofers to be licensed. There are other types of professionals such as Plumbers, A/C companies and Electricians that are required to complete specific high-level training to be able to operate as such. This is not applicable to roofing In Texas.
San Antonio for instance does have a license requirement but is not a Roofing license per se . It is more like a small contractor’s license and literally anyone who pays the license fee, submits a background check and has at least $300,000 in liability insurance can become a roofer overnight, even if they know nothing or very little about the field. The city does not care whether the person is really a roofer, is experienced, has any training, competence or education in roofing. Cities care about the fees they will collect from permits more than anything else.
This is one of the main reasons Texas is flooded with roofers and regular folks with no idea about roofing become roofers overnight just to make quick money. Homeowners also play a bad role in this by hiring the guy who has the cheapest quote without doing proper research on them.
There is little to no enforcement of the building codes because not all roofs are inspected and for that reason, the cities get flooded with so-called roofers who are nothing more than regular folks trying to score some money from owners that love paying low prices. Despite that, the city of San Antonio is considered somewhat more reliable for enforcement than other cities. Most other cities have officials who don’t care or don’t know anything about the very codes they adopt.
In the end, it is always best to make sure the contractor is “licensed” just as a way to locate them easier in case of a theft or issue with the project. Perhaps more regulations and enforcement is needed in Texas to protect homeowners better as well as companies from unfair competition.
In summary when it is time to replace your roof please keep the above recommendations in mind so that you are safer and well protected.
Nobody is going to be interested in protecting you as a consumer more than yourself. For that reason please research your roofer, do not go hire the cheapest roofer, do not use storm chasers that have no verifiable reputation in their home city, favor contractors with perfect 5 star ratings, and don’t pay upfront. Throughout our years as roofers, we believe we have the experience to know how the industry works and are sharing these tips to make you a wiser consumer for roofing services.
At Roofing Services Now we comply with the above and many other requirements. We are a professional roofing contractor and we will be happy to provide a free consultation for your roofing project. Call today and schedule an appointment with one of our expert roofing representatives.
Roofing Services Now is a residential and commercial roofing company based out of San Antonio Texas. Our principal location is at 1777 NE Interstate 410 Loop Suite 600, San Antonio TX 78217. Call today to schedule an appointment, free estimate or to talk more about any questions you may have at (210) 988-0188.
Or Visit our website at Roofing Services Now