How to Choose A Roofing Contractor
January 21st, 2014, 10:41 AM
By Greg Tittle
Can getting a new roof really be FUN?
A new roof is one of the most important decisions you will ever make when upgrading your home. I know from both personal and professional experience, as President of Tittle Brothers Construction. A new roof does not have to be a frightening experience, if you’re working with the right contractor. In fact, it can actually be a lot of fun choosing from the huge variety of colors and shingle styles available today.
It Pays Not To Scrimp.
There is one common mistake people make that I can help you avoid right now: Don’t try to scrimp and save by choosing sub-standard materials, or by choosing a contractor that isn’t an experienced, licensed roofing company. Those “few hundred dollars” you save initially may end up costing you thousands of dollars down the road and may even lead to interior damage from leaks that occur with an improperly installed roofing system.
As a professional, licensed contractor, my company recommends -- and only uses -- the most state-of-the-art roofing system like the Master Elite Weather Stopper System manufactured by GAF-ELK; and includes important all-in-one manufactured components like ice-guards, felt, shingles, ridge caps and ventilation systems.
Air It Out!
The proper ventilation of a roof is crucial. One of the most frequent problems I see, when inspecting existing roofs prior to installation of a new roofing system, is the inadequate use of ventilation in homeowners’ attics. Improper ventilation leads to poor indoor air quality, growth of mold and other irritants, higher energy costs and possible structural damage. Proper intake and exhaust ventilation is the key to having a long-lasting roof.
Costs Don’t Have To Go Through The Roof.
Before you make a financial commitment to any roofing project, be sure you carefully compare contractors. Homeowners should solicit bids from three prospective contractors based upon the same specifications: Materials; labor; and time needed to complete the project. Adam Helfman’s Hire It Done is a great place to start! There is more to the process than just price, time and materials. At Tittle Brothers Construction, for example, we offer “one year same as cash financing” for all customers.
Make sure that all terms and conditions, including any oral agreements are put in writing prior to work commencing, to protect both you and the contractor from any misunderstandings. A few key points to remember are:
- A contract should include a thorough description of the work to be performed, specifying all materials to be used.
- Agreed upon start and completion dates.
- Total cost of the project, including extras like additional wood.
- A payment schedule.
- Any warranties from the manufacturer and guarantees of workmanship from the contractor.
- The method for debris and material removal once the job is complete.
Come Out On Top.
Getting back to the “fun part” of a new roof - a useful web site you should visit to select various styles and colors, is the GAF Materials Corp. website at www.gaf.com. On this site, you can actually see how each roof will look on a home prior to installation. It’s a great “idea starter” for you to see what is available on the market today.
Once you’ve chosen your contractor and are ready to start, you should be aware that homeowners must ensure all necessary building permits and insurance documentation are displayed at the home before any work begins, and that the contractor’s name is included on the aforementioned paperwork.
The homework you do before the job is the most important step in making sure your roof keeps your home safe, dry and secure for years to come. Thanks for letting me help you with this information!
Greg Tittle is president of Tittle Brothers Construction.