Here is how it should work. A representative from the contractor comes to your home, shows you several samples of the roofing product you are interested in. Then they should tell you about their company, when it was started, and about the crew, how long they have all been together. And they should go through the typed proposal with you, line by line. The proposal should include everything from ice-and-water shield to site cleanup and warranty details. You should feel that you are hiring the right contractor for the job.
Once the project starts, everything should proceed in a timely manner. The work site kept clean with all debris picked up. And when the job is complete, you should be able to look under the shrubs and not find a single nail.
But how do you get to that point?
Look For Longevity and Professionalism
How long has the contractor been in business? Does their website look like a 10-year-old put it up 15 years ago? Are there examples of their work?
If you’re looking thought contractors websites and all you feel like your getting is a sales pitch it’s time to move on to the next one. You should be able to get an idea of who you’ll be dealing with.
There should be plenty of information about the products that they use. The materials, warranty information, performance information.
Do they share information freely? Tips and advice that anyone can use, even if it means they might lose a project because they showed you how to do something yourself.
There should be testimonials to read. Which of course, can be asked about when checking references.
Get Those References (and check them)
Go with a well-established company that can support its claims to quality with checkable references. Online testimonials are nice, but they’re not as trustworthy as speaking directly to another human being.
Positive reports on a site like Angie’s List are nice and should not be ignored; just remember that not every contractor worth considering has been reviewed online. When possible, go out and visit roofing jobs completed by the companies on your short list.
All quotes Aren’t Created Equal
A contractor must see the roof in question before he can submit a bid. Expect each candidate in the running for your business to offer insights on the work involved, including your best options and the estimated time required.
Should you meet a contractor who is not willing to explain his estimate in depth, move on to the next candidate.