How do you choose the best contractor?

Choosing the right roofer for your home can be hard. Certain things come in to factor, and if you aren’t careful, you can end up with someone who takes advantage of the state of your roof and the trust you put in them to protect the home. Here are a few things to keep in mind before you start your project.

  • Get at least three bids.  Bids can often vary by more than $5,000.  After all the basic expenses are covered (insurance, wages, supplies, taxes, etc), the only variable that alters the price is pure profit for the different companies. However, keep in mind that shockingly cheap prices rarely means quality work. You want to be sure your home is in the safest hands and your new roof will protect your home for as long as possible.
  • Be sure you’re confident in who you’re hiring. Are they a roofer or a sales organization? Do they complete the jobs with their own company or do they hire out to sub-contractors? Are they fluent and aware of all the code requirements for roofing? How many years of experience do they have?
  • Always check their contractor license to be sure they’re licensed as a roofer and not a framer or carpenter. Also be sure they’re bonded and ensured. If not, it could potentially put you at risk for problems before completion of the job. Look up their business license numbers and owner names, specifically to be sure they weren’t part of a business that thrived in the past and has several violations and unpaid fines.

    Labor and Industries
    Department of Revenue
  • Professionalism is key. How quickly did you hear back from the company? Were they on time for the appointment you made
  • References can save you from avoidable stress during this process. Knowing if a contractor fails to clean up after a job and leaves nails in the grass before a job starts can save you a bit of frustration. Contact, research or request references from the contractor. If they refuse to provide these, you’re better off with someone else.
  • Ask questions and expect reasonable answers.  You’re not a roofer and this is your home.
  • Lastly, trust your gut. If someone just doesn’t feel right around your home, don’t let them near it. There’s more likely than not always a reason for that hesitance, and it’s better to trust it than risk putting your home and your family at risk.


Young handyman standing on high ladder and measuring roof with tape

Check out Roofer’s Cafe, a forum for Roofers.