Whether you are a new homeowner, or have been living in your home for many years, replacing a roof is something that you will have to do at one point or another. Although this type of extensive undertaking can be a little bit scary to think about, knowing what you’re up against and doing some proper research can take a little of the unknown out of the equation. Furthermore, by knowing what to expect from a roofing contractor when getting a roof replacement estimate, you will know who is the highest quality roofer at the fairest price available.
Before you start soliciting for bids for your roof replacement estimate, it is important to determine a few things for yourself. Start by deciding on the type of roofing material that you want to use. This can be something as simple as choosing between metal, slate or composite shingle roofing or pinning it down to a particular color or style of shingle. With all of the different shingle varieties available, you can get great roof protection in a very attractive package. Choosing a high quality roofing material installed by a professional roofer is a great investment that will help improve not only the structure of your roof, but the overall efficiency of your home.
After you have made this decision, it is time to start calling the contractors in your area. You can start on this process by talking to your insurance company and to your friends and neighbors. Be wary of any fly-by-night roofing companies, especially right after a significant weather event. Once you have decided on who you want to be, request estimates from each and then compare them side by side.
Whenever you get your roofing estimate, which normally takes about 30 minutes to an hour to complete, you will want to look for a number of different things that should be present. If the estimate that you receive from one of these companies does not include all of these important things, then it should set off red flags and you should remove them from consideration.
The following should be in a roofing estimate:
- Project Commencement Date – This is the day that they will actually begin work on your roof. This is a very important detail to know, as you will need to ensure that it is soon enough to meet your needs.
- Estimated Time of Completion – This is just as important as the starting date. How fast does this particular contractor finish their work? Although the exact duration may not be as important to some as to others, you will want to choose someone who can finish in a timely fashion.
- A Full Work Description – An estimate should include a very detailed description of the work that is to be done. This will include a detailed list of all roofing materials, underlayment type and thickness, flashing locations and even the size of the nails and fasteners that are to be used.
- Sealant Type – In addition to the materials above, the estimate should provide the type of sealant that will be used to seal any areas that require waterproofing, such as flashing and nail holes.
- Guarantees and Expectations – In addition to the above, your contractor should also include a section that discusses the workmanship guarantees, material guarantees and cleanup expectations. Roofing manufacturers offer extensive warranties and roofing contractor certification programs to ensure you get a qualified installer.
- Insurance and Licenses – The roofing contractor you hire should make their insurance and licenses visible on the estimate so that you know they are reputable. If the roofing contractor you select doesn’t carry the right insurance or have the proper licenses to be able to pull a permit, then steer clear of that company.
All of these roof replacement estimate factors are very important when it comes to having a roofing contractor replace your roof. Go over the details of each document closely so that you can choose the contractor that best meets your expectation for the type of work to be done at a price that meets your budget. Once you have decided, it’s time to accept their proposal and let them get to work!