Selecting a roofing company that is everything it claims to be can be a challenging prospect for homeowners. How does one really know who the top roofing contractor in Washtenaw County, Michigan really is? The key is in asking the right questions and doing the right kind of homework. For homeowners in a geographic area of weather extremes like Michigan, hiring an experienced roofer matters if you want to protect your investment. And a homeowner’s investment is more than the curb appeal of the house. Every single item sheltered under that roof is an investment into the quality of your life. Here’s a 10-step plan to clear away the confusion and find the most qualified, experienced and reliable roofing contractor that serves the Washtenaw County area.
- Insurance:Many roofing contractors will be properly insured with liability insurance and workmen’s compensation insurance. However, the bestroofing contractor will feature one more insurance aspect – claims assistance. Let’s face it, navigating the claims process is complicated. There are photos to provide, forms to complete and documents, documents, documents. A roofing company that does all of that for a client is taking their roofing game to a whole new level.
- Credentials:Look for industry-trained professionals. Certifications, like GAF and CertainTeed, are proof that a contractor is familiar with the products they are using and know the proper techniques for applying and installing them. This can be crucial when it comes to compliance with warranty requirements for roofing materials.
- Community Roots:Top roofing contractors will have a brick-and-mortar office and ties to their local community. Protect yourself from fly-by-night online companies or unconnected individuals. Otherwise you could end up with a worthless warranty and no recourse for repairs of a job gone wrong.
- What’s In A Price?Sometimes it is instinctive to go with the lowest bid. Before a homeowner acts on the “lowest price” instinct, the question should be asked, “What’s in this price?” A cheaper price could very well indicate anything but value. A reputable company with qualified personnel, overhead of a storefront, and investment in training, equipment, credentials, licensing and insurance will naturally command a higher price. And then there’s materials. Does that estimate include the best materials that can hazard the extreme weather conditions of a blazing hot Michigan summer and plunging near-arctic temperatures of winter and the ice and snow that comes with it? When it comes to a roof, a homeowner generally gets what they pay for. If you want the best, expect to pay for that kind of expertise.
- Reliability:If a contractor cannot provide a reasonable timeline to job completion, that is an unreliable roofer. Every homeowner has a life. No one wants to take a day off from work just to sit around waiting for roofers who are no-shows. It is also disrespectful to neighbors who may be affected by parking, traffic and noise issues if a roofing company turns out to be unreliable. Take the time to check out reviews to determine if past experiences of customers flesh out reliability in a company.
- Versatility:A homeowner may not think that a company’s versatility to provide commercial roofing services matters. But it does. If a company can handle the complexity of a large-scale commercial roofing job, your residential roofing project should be a breeze. Also look for experience with a wide range of roofing materials like slate, metal, copper, and cedar shake in addition to standard shingles. A portfolio of completed projects that feature a wide variety of roofing styles reflects a company’s capabilities. Through their experience they have met a wide range of problems and successfully resolved all types of issues. Should your personal roofing project have a unique quality, a roofing contractor with wide capabilities will have the skill to master it.
- Confidence:How does a homeowner know that a company is confident in its abilities? By the warranties it provides. Does a contractor offer a no-leak guarantee? That’s a company who believes in their workmanship. Are there labor warranties? That’s a company who is employing the most qualified craftsmen.
- Availability:A contractor may be eager and responsive to a large roofing project that generates a tidy revenue for the company. But what about small repairs or emergencies? Are they responsive to smaller jobs and unexpected demands? The best roofing contractors will be highly responsive to emergency calls. 24-hour availability can mean the difference between a Michigan family remaining warm and dry during a winter storm of hail, snow and sleet or weathering the bitter conditions for hours waiting for a roofing professional to care.
- Free Estimates:Don’t fall for a roofing contractor that charges a service call fee to show up and give you an estimate on a job. The best professionals in the roofing industry don’t charge a penny until a project is scheduled.
- Buyer Beware:Roof rip-offs and scams are common. Buyer beware is the safest approach to take by anyone needing roof replacement or repair. One of the latest roofing rip-off schemes to hit Michigan had a bizarre twist on a common scam:
- September, 2016: Officials in Van Buren County reported four individuals in a vehicle that had a “roofing” decal approached a homeowner. They claimed to have been the roofers that installed the home’s roof for the previous homeowners. The roofers claimed that signs were visible that indicatd the roof was in need of repair. The men requested $120 for the job then asked for a bucket of water. The men followed the homeowner into the house for the water. The homeowner reported that afterward he noticed doors ajar, indicating that the home had been searched, perhaps to plan a future burglary. The men then commenced work but quickly stopped after one faked a seizure. The “roofers” left, with the $120, and never returned.
Remember, a person interested in ripping you off in a roofing scam is a criminal. Such behavior is not necessarily limited to taking your money for a job left undone. They could very well be burglars planning to take much, much more. That is why the only roofing contractor that should approach your home is one who has been solicited and invited by you, the homeowner. To protect yourself, a homeowner needs to follow some common sense guidelines:
- If it seems too good to be true, it probably is. Roof replacement or professional repairs don’t come cheap. A low-ball estimate most likely indicates unskilled workmanship and low quality materials.
- Reputable roofing contractors are not door-to-door salesmen. If someone knocks on the door and offers to inspect your roof, a homeowner may end up with a perfectly sound roof purposely damaged by an unscrupulous con artist working a roofing repair scam.
- Storm chasers don’t stick around. If a roofer shows up coincidentally after a major weather event, it’s no coincidence. They are storm chasers who will be long gone by the time you discover that their sub-par workmanship needs to be repaired.
- High-pressure is a red flag. If a contractor is pressuring you to sign on the dotted line in order to get a great deal on materials that only lasts a limited time, chances are there is something buried in the fine print that contractor doesn’t want you to read. Take your time. Read everything. Get competitive bids. Research the candidate contractors. Weed out the bad guys.
Who Is The Best? If you are serious about using the top roofing contractor in Washtenaw County, the easiest thing to do is to contact a contractor who already meets every single guideline that measures the best against the rest. A2roofing can fix any roofing issue because they have experience in every type of residential and commercial roofing system. Their highly trained technicians are certified and licensed. Their deep roots in Michigan have delivered vast experience with the effects of Michigan’s extreme weather variables. They can help homeowners choose the best roofing materials, ventilation options and insulation solutions for their roofing project. And before signing on the dotted line, the best in roofing can also provide reasonable payment options for any budget. Your family and investment deserve the best so please contact us to schedule a free estimate.