Roofing work is necessary to extend your roof’s service life while also saving yourself time, money and effort dealing with costly issues. By ensuring a healthy roof, you also protect your family and the interior of your home from rain, snow and hail all year round.

Like most major home improvement projects, roofing work is a significant investment, which is why it makes sense to work with the right contractor for the job. But before you pick one, you have to do your due diligence in vetting prospects in your local area. It all starts with asking the right questions. Here’s a list of 10 questions to ask before you make a decision of which roofing contractor to hire.

1. Are You a Licensed Roofer?

While all states have different licensing procedures, most require roofers to be licensed. As such, be sure to ask your potential contractor for their license information in your state, city and county. Don’t forget to get specific details such as the name of the license holder. To ensure your roofer’s license is updated and free of violations, check with your local licensing office.

Keep in mind that a business license is not the same as a roofing license. Business licenses are for tax purposes and to identify the company as a legitimate entity, but they do not mean the person has the right qualifications to work as a roofer. It’s also a good idea to research your state’s licensing requirements and codes.

2. How Long Have You Been in Business?

One of the best ways to find the right roofing contractor for the job is by asking about their experience. A roofing company that has been around for years suggests that they are doing something right. They have proved themselves to be competent and trustworthy in the community. Hiring a local roofing company also allows you to peruse a long list of customer references and have multiple examples of their previous projects.

3. Do You Offer Any Warranties?

Warranties vary from roofer to roofer. Most roofing companies offer roof warranties that will last a year, but some offer longer warranties for quality assurance. The manufacturer typically covers the materials, while the contractor covers the work. Because these are two separate warranties, make sure to ask your potential roofer for the coverage and length of each warranty. If they offer an extended warranty, this can add to the overall cost of your estimate.

4. Do You Have Proper Insurance?

Insurance is an important qualification when looking for the right person for your roofing project. The ideal roofer should have both types of insurance: general liability and workers’ compensation. General liability insurance protects your home should any damage to your home occur. If the crew breaks a window during a roofing replacement, for instance, you will be responsible for the repairs or a replacement.

Meanwhile, the workers’ compensation protects the roofing company’s employees. If you hire a roofing company without this type of insurance and one of its crew sustains an injury on your property, you will have to cover the medical bills.

5. Do You Use Roofing Subcontractors?

Some roofing companies usually work with subcontractors, especially if they need additional labor for the job. For this reason, ask the roofing company whether they outsource parts and make sure these subcontractors have insurance and the correct licenses to perform the roofing work. Additionally, you should also ask for the physical address and name of the subcontractors. This way, you avoid any red flags that can bring trouble to your roofing project.

6. How Will You Protect My Lawn During the Roofing Project?

During your roofing replacement, your roofer may need to use heavy-duty equipment. You might be worried about what will happen to your beautiful lawn and landscaping features. To lessen the damage to your exteriors, ask the roofer what steps they will take to ensure your lawn does not receive a beating. Perhaps they have a mandatory foot traffic pattern to ensure the workers don’t step on your bushes. They may also opt to put their equipment on the sidewalk instead of the grass.

7. What Do You Do With Refuse Material and Debris?

On a similar note, you should also ask your potential roofer what their plans are for roof-related refuse material. You don’t want to deal with removing roofing debris and junk after the construction. Reliable roofers make sure to leave your property in the same condition they found it. Most contractors bring along a large refuse container such as a dumpster to dispose of damaged materials, packing debris and any other garbage.

8. What Do You Do to Ensure the Project Is Completed on Time?

Unforeseen circumstances may come up that can delay your project. One common example is inclement weather. Hailstorms or hurricanes can impact your roofing project’s completion time. Therefore, it’s smart to ask the roofer about their contingency plans should issues occur. To protect your interiors, they may resort to tarps and other plastic coverings securely fastened to the roof. You should also ask if your roofer has backup materials, tools and supplies in case of emergency.

9. Will You Provide a Written Estimate?

As a general rule, don’t sign a contract until you get a detailed estimate on paper. You don’t want any costly surprises when the time comes to pay the final amount. A reputable roofing contractor should provide a written estimate that includes the labor, materials and anything else that may come up during the job. It should also take into account any potential costs that could come up during the actual construction process such as roof alterations or rotten plywood.

10. How Is Payment Handled?

Once you have finished double-checking the written estimate, it’s time to figure out how to handle payments. Some roofing companies may offer financing options. If a roofer asks for the full payment upfront, take caution. Although most roofers will ask for a deposit, they should never ask you to pay the full price until the job is complete and the workmanship has been examined.

Kingdom Roofing is a trusted roofing contractor that homeowners in Venice, FL, and the rest of Sarasota County turn to for top-notch roof repair services. Our expert team of consultants, installers and customer-service professionals are ready to help you repair, replace or enhance your roofing system to best protect your investment for years to come. Give us a call at (941) 217-2411 or fill out our online contact form to request an estimate.