Last week marked yet another hail event in Dallas. North Texas has had a number of weather related events in the last 12 months. After every one of these storms, roofers and home repair companies descend on homeowners offering to repair roofs, replace damaged windows and more. When these people show up on your front door, should you trust them or let them on your roof or even hire them?
To help answer that question, I talked with Larry Nix and Steve Gillis of Nix Group, a home builder and remodeler in Dallas (www.nixgroup.com) to get their input on how to evaluate a roofer. Here are their 5 suggestions;
- Is the roofer / repair company insured? They should be able to provide proof of their insurance (ask for a copy of their declaration page) for liability coverage. This coverage will protect you in the event a repair inadvertently damages another part of your home (someone falls through a roof, etc.). If you’re dealing with a general contractor, make sure their subs are insured too.
- Are they local? It’s very common after large storms for roofing companies to come from out of state looking for overflow work. Larry & Steve’s recommendation is deal with someone local (get their office address) just in case you need to get them back out to fix or redo something.
- How long have they been in business? Ask this question and then verify it with one of the trade groups, their insurance agent, the Better Business Bureau or other clients. Will they be around in six months or a year if you need a shingle replaced or a gutter re-tacked or any other potential follow up item?
- Ask for references. Look at 2 or 3 past examples of their work and talk with each homeowner. Would they rehire them? You’ll find out a lot just by doing this!
- Beware of promises of freebies. If the roofer is promising a higher grade of shingle for the same price, free roof vents, upgraded gutters, etc. get the offer in writing. If it sounds too good to be true then definitely get it in writing.
This advice would also work well with any contractor and a lot of other businesses too!
What’s been your experience? Share it with us in the comments section or on our Facebook page. Have a question? Let me know and we’ll get you an answer!