While there are some home repair jobs you can do yourself, roof restoration can be a tricky and sensitive job, especially if you live in a heritage home, where it can be quite a challenge to find the right contractor.
Here are some useful tips to help you make your selection:
Choose a local company.
Going with a local company is generally the safest bet. Beyond the obvious benefits of helping the local economy, this guarantees they have a reputation in the community to live up to and they are much less likely to vanish into thin air in case some problems occur and you need to claim your warranty.
Check for insurance.
It also pays off to inquire whether the company has a liability insurance policy. Don’t take their word for it, ask to see the documents and check with the insurance firm. This will ensure that you’re dealing with a legit, aboveboard operation, and that both you and the contractor are covered in case of unforeseen circumstances.
If you pay peanuts…
While it’s only natural to do a realistic assessment of your budget and have some expectations about the price range, make sure that your expectations are aligned with the average market rates. Price shouldn’t be your sole criterion and, if a company offers to do the job for a price much below the market rates, this should be a red flag. Are you sure you want to risk getting below par materials and shoddy workmanship just to save a few bucks? A botched repair work might end up costing you more in the long run than the fair price asked by a reputable company, which will get the job done right the first time round.
Don’t fall for canvassing tricks.
What are the odds that the contractor who knocks on your door out of the blue offering to fix your roof is actually someone you can trust to do the job? Highly skilled contractors who get a steady flow of jobs rarely need to resort to canvassing. If someone tries to approach you through such means, be sure to ask for some time to review your options and don’t rush into signing anything. As a rule, it’s always best to do your research and ask for referrals before committing to anything.
Get everything in writing.
Make sure you’ve discussed the process, estimated completion date, warranties and terms of payment in detail and get everything in writing. Don’t get pressured into paying the full amount before the job is done, to your satisfaction.
Communication, communication, communication!
Communication is the key to any successful relationship, personal or business. If the prospective roofing contractor takes an awful long time to return your calls, to send required documentation or to respond to your queries, this doesn’t bode well for how promptly they will deliver when it comes to the actual job. Voice your concerns and, if the problem persists, you might want to keep looking!
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