What questions should I ask when getting a new roof?

Maine homeowners looking to replace their roofs are making a big investment in their homes. For this reason, knowing what to ask potential roofing contractors makes sense. A few well-thought-out questions can help homeowners determine which roofer is the best fit for their needs. A primer on questions to ask when getting a new roof can help.

Basics Questions You Should Ask

Are you insured?

A roofer who is serious about his work will have proper insurance, including worker’s compensation insurance that covers him or his employees in the event they are injured on the job and general liability insurance to cover damage to your property resulting from the job. If the roofer is uninsured, then accidents may end up falling under the homeowner’s liability insurance – or the homeowner might even be sued for damages.

Do you have references?

Potential roofers for hire should have references, including a list of past clients for possible clients to review and contact if necessary. Photos of previous jobs is also helpful.

What type of roof do you recommend?

A roofer who has lots of experience installing roofs on home throughout Maine can recommend the best options for roofing. Main has fairly pleasant weather year round with the exception of the bitter winter months from November through February when temperatures plummet to 0 degrees F or below and snow can pile up high. In the northeastern part of the state, nor’easters are common, bringing with them huge amounts of snow (10 inches or more is not unheard of) and freezing rain. Having a roof that can withstand the Maine elements is important. For this reason, many roofers suggest slate roofs, which are super durable in cold climates and withstands storms and wind. Another good choice? Metal. Roofers prefer metal for areas with heavy snow.

Do you stand by your estimate?

Any estimate given should be fairly accurate within a few hundred dollars with most roofers. Fair roofers stick to their estimates as much as possible with minimal exceptions.

Do you haul away refuse from the job?

Drip edging, shingles, old plywood and other demolition scraps can really pile up with a roof replacement underway. It makes sense to ask the roofer if he plans to bring a dumpster for taking off the refuse or if the homeowner is responsible for hauling it off.

Do I get a warranty with the roof?

Depending on your roof type, warranty periods on new roofs average around 25 years. Anything less should raise a red flag.

Vetting a Roofer

Homeowners should fully qualify a roofer before hiring him for the job. Checking out reviews on sites such as Yelp or Angie’s List is a good way to find out what other clients think about the roofer’s work. Homeowners can also search for complaints with the Maine Better Business Bureau to check for complaints and any solutions the roofer provided.

Most roofing jobs go off without a hitch. By asking questions of the roofer before hire, homeowners put themselves in a better position to get a beautiful, safe roof within their budget parameters.