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September 07 2012


The Best Advice about Choosing a Roofing Contractor… Anywhere

Roofing Gainesville Fl
Hi, my name is Franklin, and you’re obviously reading this article because you are looking for a roofing contractor.  Just a couple of things you can do to make sure you are not only getting the best price but also finding someone that will do a good job on your re-roofing or repair. This video is the first in a series designed to help you pick out a good qualified roofing contractor in your area.  I will walk you through step by step on how to do this in an unbiased fashion.  

Roofer Gainesville Fl

Firstly, hopefully you are getting quotes from a couple of different roofing contractors, that’s always a good idea.   If you have a friend that has had their roof done and was happy with the job, it’s probably a good idea to include that roofer in the mix.  Also just a couple of little quick tips to start, only call a contractor one time, if you are a potential new customer and you have to call a contractor twice to get them to call you back, immediately eliminate them.   Here’s the logic, if you are a potential new customer and companies really need new customers to stay in business, and they don’t call you back when you call as a new customer, imagine how they are going to treat you if you have some kind of an issue after the job is done.  So only call the contractor once. 

Roofing Gainesville Fl
Okay, you have had a few contractors come out and now you need to narrow down your selection.  You need some basic credentials from a roofer before you should consider hiring them.    

The three critical things they must have are  1. A current contractor’s license, 2. Current liability insurance and 3. Proof they are bonded, so you are not stuck if they mess up the job.  You need to see proof on all three of these items: contractors license, liability insurance and current bonding.   This should not be a big deal for your contractor to show you these items – you need to protect yourself.  

Here’s the biggest thing that people mess up on when hiring any contractor – references, they don’t get any or they get the wrong ones. 

What do you mean Franklin “the wrong ones?”  Get three references – but I don’t want you to just ask for a list of three, because that will get you a handpicked list of their three best customers. 

What you need to ask for is the contact information from their last three customers.  This is the only way you control who the contractor refers rather than them.  If they can’t do this, it tells you that they have a problem and just automatically eliminate them. 

Now here’s the key to make this strategy work.  Don’t just get the names, but actually call them; you must actually call all three references.  

Okay now that you have picked out your potential roofers, you need to decide what kind of roofing material do you want on your house? Slate? Tile? Metal Roofing? Asphalt Shingles? Architectural Asphalt Shingles?   If you are looking at economy, asphalt shingles are your best bet.  There are a lot of colors to choose from and many different quality variations. 

They are a lot of advancements in asphalt shingles now and for just a bit more you can upgrade to architectural asphalt shingles which have a variety of different looks and can add a lot of value to your home.  Slate is very expensive and not generally recommended unless you have a very high end home, 

Metal roofing has come a long way and is terrific in hot climates as it reflects heat, and of course there is a lot of choices in tile as well.  Discuss this over with your roofer and they will be able to assist you in finding the right roofing material that fits both your budget and your style choices. 

Find out about warranties on the material and the warranties from the roofer, these are two separate things.  Once you have picked all this out, then get it all in writing before they start.  You need a complete proposal as to what they will do, when they will do it, how long will it take,  exactly how much it will cost and what are the warranties on their work.    

Now it’s time for the new roofing job to start; let’s talk a bit about what to expect during the roofing process.  

A roofing job generally takes about two days; of course dependent on size, material and complexity, but during this time, your house is going to be turned upside down. 

Make sure and take before and after pictures of your roof.  You are going to want to cover any valuable plants that are near the edge of the roof and point these out in advance to the contractor.  

It’s going to be noisy during those two or three days and it can sometimes get messy depending on the contractor.  We are pretty good, but some are less tidy.  Make sure you discuss this with your contractor in advance.

Also, although all the pounding is going on outside the house, you are going to want to make sure to secure any fragile items inside your home as there is a lot of pounding and there will be a lot of noise and vibrations coming through the roof.  Securing your fragile items will save you some potential heartbreak later.  Then you will probably want to take off during the day as it will be pretty darn noisy.

However you will want to stay nearby and accessible as questions may arise during the job. 

I want to walk you through the final inspection.  Don’t pay the final amount until you have gone through and checked out the roof thoroughly. 

Now if you have followed our series so far, you are protected as you picked out one of the good guys going in, but you will always get a bit faster response if you get things fixed at the time rather than a call back.  

Check out everything from every side of the house.  Is anything sticking up anywhere?  Is there any debris left around the house you need cleaned up?  Is there any damage to the exterior walls they need to fix or to the landscaping?  Do you have any other questions? 

If everything is in order, then you can make the final payment to your contractor and congratulations on your beautiful new roof!  I hope you have found this article helpful,

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