When you hire a roofing contractor for repairs, re-roofing, or even just regular maintenance, it’s important to know what to look for in your estimate. A roofing estimate is a broad overview of what you can expect from the roofing service and how much you will pay for the job. When you receive your estimate, make sure to ask questions if anything is unclear about the job you are hiring the roofing company for.
If you are unfamiliar with roofing estimates, below are some tips and things to look for that will help you with the finer points of repairs or replacement. These are the basic elements you should expect in any roofing contractor’s estimate.
You should be able to find the following basic information in a roofing estimate:
- Name of the Roofing Company
- Company contact information
- Company website (if applicable)
- Insurance and licensing information
- Job description and scope of work
- Materials used
- Bottom-line project cost
- Warranty information
- Roofing estimate provisions
Detailed Description of Job
Your roofing estimate should outline a detailed description of the job so that you understand the work that will be performed. The description may include:
- A list of all roofing materials
- Type and thickness of roofing underlayment
- Location of the flashing
- Size of the nails and fasteners
- Type of sealant used for waterproofing
- Changes to ventilation
- Specified manufacturer products
Roofing Materials to be Used
A reputable roofing contractor specifies in extensive detail the type of roof decking, shingles, flashing, underlayment and ventilation that will be used for the project. This information should be highly specific in the estimate.
For example, it should explain the thickness of the underlayment, the flashing locations, the type of sealant for areas that mandate waterproofing (nail holes, flashing, etc.) and the sizes of the fasteners and nails to be used for the project. This should also include the product brands that the contractor will use for your roofing project in the materials used section.
While a complete roof replacement might be more expensive up-front, it does mean you won’t have to pay for excessive repairs, especially if there are multiple trouble spots. It can also improve your property’s value.
Cost & Payment Information
A roofing job estimate should include labor and materials, permits, clean up and removal of any debris.The total of the job should include all costs with no surprises, hidden fees or sudden changes. However, your roofer may have to switch products depending on availability (which can affect the cost of materials), or they may have to adjust the cost if they have to perform an unforeseen task such as repairing or replacing a part of the roofing system. These exceptions should be noted on your estimate.
Each roofing company has structured payment schedules when it comes to payment terms. These range from month-to-month financing to full payment upon completion. A contractor will sometimes require a deposit in advance, a certain percentage at a given benchmark, and the remainder upon completion. Clear and concise costs and payment terms should be included in your roof estimate so that you understand what to expect before the roofing contractor begins work.
Insurance & Licensing Information
Roofing contractors must carry a contractor’s license and certification that meets all Florida state requirements. They are also required to carry liability insurance that protects their employees from injury and compensates you if they damage your property. A trustworthy roofing contractor will be ready to provide this information along with the roofing estimate or upon request. As a homeowner or business owner, it is wise to request these credentials so that you can hold the contractor legally accountable if they fail to install the roof according to job specifications or local or state building codes. This also applies when hiring a company for a professional roof inspection or maintenance.
What to Ask Your Roofing Contractor
Although most roof project estimates are comprehensive, they may not cover all of the specific job aspects. No matter how thorough your contractor is in explaining the job details on paper, there are still important areas you will want to address. Consider asking the following questions:
- What are the specifics on the materials being used (manufacturer or quality/reputation of the products)?
- Are there provisions for sudden job changes or add-ons that may increase costs?
- If the contractor fails to pay all associated entities (employees, subcontractors, material suppliers), is there a lien release that protects the homeowner?
Don’t get stuck with a roofing contractor who gives you a higher estimate than needed! Johnson Roofing Solutions provides free estimates AND financing to homes and businesses across the panhandle of Florida with clear and honest expectations for every roofing job. We have offices in Panama City, Chipley and Graceville with our service area expanding from Tallahassee to Pensacola. We are fully licensed and insured, family owned and operated and prepared to take on any roofing project from minor repairs to complete replacements or even new construction. Contact us today and let us be your solution!