When it comes to making a large purchase, most people know better than to consult with anyone who resembles a used car salesman. Yet, homeowners often fail to recognize the signs of a bad roofing contractor, so long as they have a hammer and a low-ball offer.
The Better Business Bureau receives more than 4.5 million inquiries into roofing contractors, each year—even more than those logged for used car dealerships—and fields thousands of complaints. More often than not, these homeowners have fallen victim to various roofing scams, like overcharging and disappearing down payments, leaving customers high and dry.
With the average cost of a new residential roof ranging anywhere from $10,000 to $14,000, or more, most homeowners can’t afford the risk of shoddy workmanship or the costs of re-repair.
Avoid the headache of using a bad roofing contractor. Use our list of homeowner tips to make your future roofing project a painless one.
Selecting a Trustworthy Roofer
Ask for applicable licensing
While Texas does not require roofing contractors to carry a roofing license, you can still get one through the Roofing Contractors Association of Texas. Request a copy of their licensing certificate. Oklahoma does require a roofing license for all roofing contractors.
- Our Texas license # is  03-0306
- Our Oklahoma license # is 80003242
You should also verify a roofing contractor’s legitimacy by confirming their Tax ID, business address and website, and contact information. If your roofer doesn’t have these footprints, you may want to find another provider.
Verify proof of insurance
A trustworthy contractor is going to have proper insurance to cover them while they are working on your property. Asking a roofer to produce their insurance certificate protects you from worries of injuries sustained on the job, as well as damage to your property—and prevents potential litigation. Look at the official Certificate of Insurance from the contractor and call the contact number provided to verify that there policy is still in effect and that the company is in good standing. It’s easy to make your first monthly payment for a year’s worth of coverage and not pay again now that your certificate says it’s good for 1 year. This is the easiest and most common way to fool your customer in our industry. Always call.
Read reviews or ask for references
Today’s homeowners have the benefit of reading customer reviews with a few clicks of the mouse. Reputable sites, such as Angie’s List and other popular review channels, are a great place to start. You can also ask your roofing contractor for a list of customer references. Past customers aren’t likely to hold back if they were pleased or unsatisfied with a contractor’s work.
Don’t fall for bottom-of-the-barrel prices
In the roofing business, you get what you pay for. If a roofer is offering a rate that is too good to be true, it probably is. Besides paying fair wages to roofing staff and for materials, a legitimate contractor establishes price to cover their insurance and overhead costs. Some bad roofers may offer scant prices to start, only to overcharge you for services later.
Obtain a written contract or proposal
To avoid expensive surprises, it’s important for homeowners to obtain a contract or work proposal in writing. Having this on hand protects you from overcharging, and ensures your roofer is only doing the work initially agreed upon. If a problem arises, a trustworthy roofing contractor will not hesitate to discuss it with you first, and will be sure to add the item to a change order.
Determine whether they have manufacturer designations
Top roofing manufacturers require their contractors to have special training or certification to install their products. Inexperienced roofers can void your roof’s warranty, leaving you to foot the bill for unnecessary repairs. For example, AVCO is a certified roofer through GAF, and TAMKO which only designates the Top 2% of roofers in each market.
Your roof protects your home and personal belongings. Don’t leave residential roof repair or replacement up to chance. Learn to ask the right questions, and find a professional and experienced roofing contractor who isn’t reluctant to prove their trustworthiness in the marketplace.
With AVCO Roofing, you never have to worry about over-selling or bad workmanship. Our team of experienced and professional contractors will give you “Peace of Mind” and a beautiful roof to last. Get your free 16-point inspection here, and let’s discuss how we can help you restore the beauty and integrity to your home.