dimensions of roof

Measuring A Roof

Do you know how it’s done?

Measuring a roof from the ground can be a much safer way to get the information you need to do a roof. This week I was asked to teach a new solar estimator how to measure a roof from the ground. The basic idea of measuring a roof from the ground may sound ridiculous but it can be done, and done very accurately. I think everyone should measure at least the perimeters of the roof from the ground because the risk of a fall walking along the eaves of the roof can be avoided. If you are a professional and you are up and down ladders, crawling around steep, wet, damp and slippery roofs year in and year out, the odds are against you. These tips can reduce the risk of a fall. This web page is to show how the whole roof can be measured from the ground and a order for materials be placed.

So, What tools do I need to measure a roof?

1, Tape Measure. a 25 foot or longer works good. I use a laser for speed and it is very accurate. There a measuring wheels that work well also.

2, Graph Paper, some basic graph paper will help keep straight lines and scale your roof drawing. I use a two-foot scale drawing and most sizes homes will fit on a 8.5 x 11 sheet of paper.

3, Calculator, is a important tool since it will help you with complex math with less or no errors.

4, Pitch Gage, will be needed to find the pitch of a roof. There are pitch gage Apps for smart phone free to download.
Familiarize your self with the names of the parts of a roof, like the Gable, Hip, Valley, Eave and Ridge. Take a minute before you measure and Google your roof then highlight these parts of the roof like seen here to the left. It will help with your drawing later. Start from the left corner and start taking measurement from the eave to eaves all around the home. Using the graph sheet you should end up right where you started. If you don’t, then you made an error some where.

Once the site drawing is done look at the drawing and in a red marker draw out squares like seen in this drawing. {drawing has been cropped}

A, Is { 48′ x 24′ } B, { 16′ x 24′ } C, { 12′ x 24′ } and D, { 6′ x6′ } Do you see the squares? Add these four totals and you have the foot-print of the roof which is 1860 sq. ft. Now we need to add the pitch factor which is the rise of the roof. Most homes have about a 4:12 pitch or 18.5 degrees. This is as low a pitch as you want when installing asphalt shingles. This roof we are measuring today is a 6:12 pitch or 26.5 degrees. The pitch factor I use for this is 1.12. This factor should be times the house foot print, 1860 sq. feet and your roof size equals 2084 or 20.84 sqs. Lets call it 21 sqs. Determine the waste factor and you have the total roofing sqs. you need to complete this roof.

Now to determine the length of the valleys and hips needs to be calculated using the hip factor of 1.50 for a 6:12 pitch. So here in the front right side is a hip roof and the width being 24 feet. x 1.50= 36 feet, divided by 2 for each side which equals 18 feet for the hip length. The valleys are the same formula as the hips. For this short valley on the right being 6 foot equals 6 x 1.50 = 9 ft.
The eave should be looked at by a ladder to see how many layers of shingles there are on the roof. With a good roof flashing count, you can place a materials order to the supply house. Here are the pitch factors rounded up for calculating the sqs. of a roof.

Degrees converted to roof pitch

9.5° = 2:12,  14° = 3:12,  18.5° = 4:12,  22.5° = 5:12,

26.5° = 6:12,  30° = 7:12,   33.5° = 8:12,   37° = 9:12,

40° = 10:12,    42.5° = 11:12,   45° = 12:12

roof with layover work

Why We Don’t Do Layovers

While laying a new roof over an old roof may be faster, cheaper, and it happens frequently, we refuse to do it. Check out this article we recently read from ProRemodeler.com: Read more

atlas chalet roof

When To Replace A Roof

No matter how little you want to deal with them, roofing issues sometimes appear. There is never a right moment for a roofing problem to arise, although it is best to tackle them on a clear, sunny day and definitely instead of during winter. Unfortunately, you cannot always predict when your roof is going to get damaged or how. That is why you should make it a habit to take a regular look at your roof to prevent any problems. Sometimes it can be very hard to detect a problem, which is why a thorough inspection by a professional roofing contractor is required to get to the bottom of anything questionable. Unless of course, you are fully acquainted with roofing issues (including the dangers) and how to deal with them. Repair or replace? That is always the question. Both options can end up a pretty costly affair but as far as the quality of life is concerned, doing one or the other is worth every cent. So how do you determine the best option for your roof and your situation? Check out this short article on the topic. You might find it useful.

First off, let’s have a look at some of the telltale signs that something is wrong with your roof.

Exterior Signs:

  • Your storm gutters often end up clogged with granules
  • You notice broken tiles or shingles on your roof
  • Your shingles lack granules
  • You notice that the attic insulation is wet
  • Flashing is damaged or missing

You should know that problems with roofing generally occurs on the exterior first, so it is important to be able to recognize any changes in the structure itself. Bear in mind that unless you fix an problems you may find fairly soon, the damage will spread to the inside, making repairs much more difficult and expensive.

Interior Signs:

  • Your wallboards have started to discolor
  • Paint has started peeling or cracking
  • Wallpaper is peeling
  • Mildew or mold has formed on the walls and ceiling
  • Your ceiling has some very suspicious brown spots, the nature of which you are not familiar with

If you miss  the exterior signs, at least make sure you act fast as possible when you discover any of the telltale interior signals  just noted above. The sooner you find a solution, the better. No matter if you currently live in that property, you have rented it out or you are intending to sell it, it is up to you to care for your roof and make sure that it is regularly and routinely cleaned and taken care of. That is unless you want to make all matters worse and end up paying why will probably amount to a king’s ransom for a costly, total replacement.

If you are not sure whether the damage on your roof requires a repair or a total replacement, call  a qualified, licensed local roofing contractor.

When to Repair:

  • If your roof is new (less than 20 years old) depending on the life expectancy of the material and application
  • If the warranty period of the roofing materials has not yet expired
  • If a leak does not reappear once you have it repaired
  • If there is only a small leak that needs repair
  • If this is the first time you have had to hire a contractor to repair your roof

When to Replace:

  • If the warranty period of the roofing material has expired
  • If the roof is too old (over 20 years old or dependent upon the life expectancy of the material/application)
  • If the roof has been repaired a number of times previously
  • If there are leaks found in numerous locations of the structure
  • If leaks keep on reappearing after they are repaired

Unfortunately, sometimes there may not be any visible signs that the roof structure has been damaged and needs repair or replacement. Unless you are an expert at roofing, let a certified, licensed roofing professional inspect the roof. A trusted expert will be able to detect the problems you are facing (if any) and provide the best solution for your situation and one that will make you worry much less.

white spring flowers

What Time Of Year To Replace A Roof

Truth be told, the best time of year to replace your roof is whenever you’ve been able to adequately plan for it. Acting under pressure from a leaking roof or a gaping hole can push people to make rash decisions that they’ll regret later. Not to mention that depending on the time of year, scheduling a replacement could take weeks if your roofing contractor is busy.

When it comes to roofing, busy season usually falls between late summer and fall, but that doesn’t mean that the other parts of the year are better or worse for getting your roof replaced. U.S. News & World Report does suggest avoiding seasons known for bad weather, which may change depending on your climate, so it’s worth taking a look at all the times of year that you could replace your roof and decide which is best for your needs.

What time of year is best to replace a roof

Spring 

spring

As winter fades away and takes the cold weather with it, many homeowners start thinking about all of the home improvement projects they can tackle now that it’s enjoyable to be outside again. And if they’re experiencing leaks, drafts or cave-ins thanks to harsh winter weather, it’s also the time of year many homeowners start thinking about replacing their roofs.

Winter can be too cold, summer can be too hot and fall can be too busy, so for most areas of the U.S., spring is the best time of year to get your roof replaced. Asphalt shingles in particular need time to adhere to your roof and create the sealing that keeps them in place, which can’t happen in temperatures below 45°F. This makes spring an ideal time to consider a roof replacement.

The only downside to replacing your roof in the spring is that the weather can be a little unpredictable. Rain interrupting your install can result in some delays, but good roofers know how to accommodate for the changing weather and often come prepared with backup plans if the sky decides to open up. If you can plan ahead to avoid the weather, you don’t have to let spring storms rain on your parade (or install).

Summer 

summer roof replacement

For most roofing contractors, summer through fall is the busiest time of year. The weather is typically consistent and warm enough to allow all tools and materials to function, making it a time when most people book their roof replacements. Late spring to early summer is often marked as one of the best times of year to replace a roof since, in most climates, the rain has stopped and the extreme heat and humidity of late summer haven’t set in yet.

One downside to this optimal time, however, is that there are a lot of people trying to schedule roof replacements at once. This means that prices go up and time slots become very limited. Roofing contractors will work with you to schedule the best time to come do your roof, but due to the significant increase in appointments during this time, it may be a while before they’re able to get to your house.

If your project gets pushed too far back into the summer season, you may end up having to install your roof during the dog days of extreme heat and humidity. Not only does this type of weather have an effect on the working conditions and hours your installers can reasonably work, but it can also affect the roofing materials themselves.

Extreme heat can start to melt asphalt shingles, making them less durable during installation and more prone to getting scuffed and damaged.

Fall 

fall roof replacement

A basic Google search will tell you that fall is the best time of year for roof replacements. The combination of cool, stable weather and the onset of winter leads most homeowners to start thinking about how their homes will be affected by the upcoming cold, snow and sleet — which is why fall is one of the busiest seasons for roof replacements.

Since the temperatures average between 45°F and 85°F with little threat of unpredictable rain, fall is typically one of the best times of year for shingles to set and seal. With the overall cooler temperatures, roofers are also able to work longer days without getting overheated, helping your project get finished faster.

But replacing your roof in the fall can have some drawbacks. Since so many people are often vying for the same appointment slots for their roof replacements, it can be weeks or longer between when you sign your contract to when you get your new roof. Roofing contractors will also often tackle the most needed roof replacements first, possibly pushing your roof replacement into the beginning of winter depending on your roof’s condition.

For these reasons, Devon Thorsby, a real estate editor for U.S. News & World Report, advises that if you hope to replace your roof in the fall, it’s wise to plan a month or two in advance so you’re prepared for any delay that may arise.

Winter

winter roof replacement

Winter can be a difficult season for roofing contractors to complete roof replacements. If winter is when your schedule allows for a roof replacement, or a sudden emergency forces your hand, it’s important to try and plan ahead as much as you can.

Replacing a roof becomes problematic when temperatures drop below 40°F. Shingles need thermal sealing in order to set, and while this process can happen quickly in warmer temperatures, it could take days or weeks in colder temperatures. If shingles get too cold, they can also crack or break during your install. Plus, snow, sleet and other winter weather can make it extremely unsafe for workers to complete an install.

Fortunately, it is still possible to replace your roof in the winter as long as your roofing contractor knows what they’re doing and everyone’s schedule is accommodating to any changes in weather. When shingles are properly stored in a warm environment and are quickly applied with specialized tools, they can seal just as well as shingles applied in the spring or summer. Another benefit to winter roof replacements is that there’s a decrease in the amount of work that roofers are able to book, which means you may be able to snag a good deal.

Any reputable contractor can guarantee the quality of their work regardless of the weather, so replacing your roof in the winter may be the best option for you if you want schedule flexibility.

Call Five Points Roofing today and we can help with any other questions you may have: (615) 794-4001

closeup of roof cap

A Shingle Roof’s Lifecycle

A roof replacement is a major investment – one that most homeowners go through at least once. So, it’s natural to wonder how long you can expect your shingle roof to last.

While there is no set formula for a roof’s lifespan, most manufacturer warranties guarantee asphalt shingles for anywhere from 15 to 30 years. Why the huge span?

“Actual roof system lifespan is determined by a number of factors, including local climatic and environmental conditions, proper building and roof system design, material quality and suitability, proper application and adequate roof maintenance,” notes the National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA)

The fact is, from the moment a new roof is completed, it begins to age. A home’s roof is exposed to harsh environmental conditions and constant weather woes. Sunlight, wind, moisture from rain, hail, snow, and physical threats such as falling tree limbs, stray soccer balls, and even wildlife like squirrels and birds can all cause premature aging of a roof system.

So, how long does a shingle roof last? To get the most out of your investment, it helps to understand the three main stages in the lifecycle of a shingle roof.

The lifecycle of a shingle roof

Shingle lifecycle.

Stage one: New roof

The new roof phase generally lasts for about two years and begins as soon as the last shingle is nailed in place. This stage in a roof’s lifecycle is a period of rapid aging, at least initially. This period is also known as the curing phase.

For up to a year or so after installation, homeowners might notice some significant granule loss, curling along the edges of some shingles (particularly during a cold weather spell), and even minor blistering. Don’t worry: this is perfectly normal and temporary as the new roof adjusts to the harsh environment and weather conditions it is constantly subjected to. As long as the roof’s integrity is sound and there are no leaks, there’s no real cause for concern.

Stage two: Mid-life roof

After the initial curing phase, a shingle roof enters an extended period of aging slowly, which lasts for the major portion of the shingles’ natural life, typically between 12 and 15 years. Signs of normal aging include: minor granule loss, cracking, and other signs of weathering, but not in any significant amount that would be cause for concern.

What is important for homeowners to remember during this relatively quiet stage of a roof’s lifecycle is to keep up with roof maintenance. Regular inspections, either annually or biannually, and maintenance is critical to ensuring that all the various roofing system components are performing optimally and guarantee your roofing investment lasts a long time.

When inspecting your roof, you want to make sure your roof, gutters, and vent openings are clear of debris like leaves and tree limbs, and be sure to check for moss, mildew, or mold — a sure sign of moisture seeping into the surface of your roof. Treat any affected areas with a roof moss remover spray or cleaner from your local hardware store. Or try this DIY version from This Old House. Look for and secure any lifted or loose shingles and give the flashing a quick scan and tighten any bolts, if needed.

Remember, small defects can lead to major repairs that can compromise the entire roofing system and make a major dent in your wallet. Even a warranty can’t protect a homeowner from shouldering the responsibility of an ill-maintained roofing system. A warranty can be voided if there’s been extended neglect.

Stage three: old roof 

After 12 to 15 years, a home’s roof is entering its declining years and the aging process generally accelerates pretty rapidly. It’s during this stage in a roof’s lifecycle that homeowners should start considering replacement.

“Sooner or later, every roof needs to be replaced, usually due to the long-term effects of weathering. If a residential roof is more than 20 years old, it is a prime candidate for reroofing,” says the Asphalt Roofing Manufacturers Association. ARMA lists a few signs to determine if you need a new roof: cracked, missing or broken shingles, staining, blisters, excessive loss of granules, or exposed bald spots.

If you’re roof is getting to the age of replacement, give us a call and we can provide a free estimate! (615) 794-4001

wood roof

You Might Be Surprised! 10 Roofing Facts You Didn’t Know.

You see your roof every day. You see your neighbor’s roof every day. You see dozens, maybe even hundreds of roofs every day.

But what you don’t know just by looking at them is that the typical roofing system is incredibly complex, employs some of the best cutting-edge technology in the construction industry, and hides a bevy of “trade secrets.”

We’re pulling back the curtain (or shingles, in this case) and revealing 10 roofing facts that might surprise you.

1. Where you live dictates what style of roof you should get.

It’s a roofing fact: some roof types just work better in certain regions and climates. Gable roofs, or roofs formed with two triangles at a 90-degree angle, work best in colder, snowier climates or when homeowners want to build attics or have vaulted ceilings.

Hipped roofs, which have four slopes of equal length on all four sides that meet at the top to form a ridge, are more wind resistant than gable roofs and might work best in windy areas.

Water tends to pool more easily on a flat roof, which means this type of roofing system might be best in a drier, less rainy climate.

2. Flat roofs are not flat.

Don’t be fooled by the name. Flat roofs are not entirely flat. They actually have a slight slope of at least ¼ inch per foot.

3. A roof is a lot more than shingles and wood.

Facts about roofs.

A good roof system has no fewer than seven necessary components. There’s the roof decking, which has to support all the weight of the roofing system. Next comes the ice or water barrier to help prevent damage if ice damming occurs. A roof also needs a waterproof or water-resistant underlayment that will protect the deck directly from moisture creeping in. Then there’s the metal flashing, which ensures the water runs off the edges, and a drip edge, which has a similar function. Finally, a roof has to have shingles. And don’t forget the ventilation system–the soffits, eaves and vents which allow air to circulate.

4. It’s not okay to cover an existing roof.

While it may seem like an inexpensive, quick fix to a roofing problem, double-layered roofs can cover up big roofing issues that need to be addressed. In addition, a double-layered roof adds weight and just hides the corroding material, allowing the problem to get worse. If previous roofing materials were installed over the top of your existing roof, you should replace the entire roof as soon as possible.

5. You can’t DIY a roof.

Yes, it seems to run counter to what all the DIY programs tell you. The true roofing fact is, a roof is actually a complex system of layers that require proper installation from skilled professionals with the right training and tools to ensure it all works together correctly. Going the DIY route can result in damage to your attic, walls, wood frame, and even electrical systems.

6. Roofs breathe.

Roof ventilation facts.

As funny as it may sound, a roof needs air. Roof ventilation, ie: the flow of air on the underside of a roof deck, is one of the most critical aspects of the whole roof system. Roof ventilation allows warm, moist air to escape and cooler, drier air to come into the attic. Without ventilation, condensation is going to build up in your attic, which can damage walls, wood and insulation.

7. A roof can be good for the environment.

Environmentally friendly or “cool roofs” reflect infrared and ultraviolet rays from the sun away from the building and have a higher thermal emittance, or ability to efficiently emit radiation. According to the EPA, cool roofs not only help homeowners conserve energy, but they reduce air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions as well by mitigating the heat radiated into the atmosphere.

8. Professional roofing cleaning companies are a thing.

It’s a roofing fact that it’s important to keep your roof clean and clear of moss, algae and fungus/lichen, but did you know there are professionals who specialize in keeping roofs clean? They have special techniques and products to do it, including equipment that doesn’t harm shingles and biodegradable cleaning solutions that are less harmful to plants and the environment. They even have a trade association, the Roof Cleaning Institute of America.

9. A faulty roof can break a home sale.

A new roof can be a major selling point when you go to sell your home. Conversely, a roof with leaks, missing or damaged shingles, or other visible signs of disrepair can send a potential buyer running. The last thing a new homeowner wants to do is spend money on a costly roof replacement. It’s far better to replace your roof before you sell your home.

10. My roof will last forever.

Almost, but not quite. The typical lifespan of a roof really depends on the materials and installation. A simple, 3-tab shingle roof may be warranted for 20 to 25 years. Shake style shingles can be warranted for up to 50 years.

5 hundred dollar bills

How Much Does A New Roof Really Cost?

The fact is, roofs don’t really have price tags dangling off of them. So, how do you know how much a new roof costs? There are quite a few factors to consider. As Middle Tennessee’s leading Roofing company, we’ve got answers that can help you budget your roof replacement.

First, it helps to understand the various parts that make up your whole roof.

Understanding your roof system

A roof is made up of several layers that work together as a system to protect your home. Proper installation of each component protects the roof, attic, walls, and foundation from wind, rain, ice, heat, and humidity.

In addition to shingles, a complete roofing system includes:

  • Deck: The main wooden structure.
  • Underlayment: A layer installed under the shingles to keep the deck dry.
  • Flashing: Material used to deflect water away from seams or joints around chimneys, exhausts, etc.
  • Vents: Items that optimize airflow through the attic to keep the roof dry.
  • Drip edge: Material along the edge of the roof that guides water to the ground or in the gutters.
  • Soffit: The area underneath a roof overhang.
  • Fascia: The horizontal roof trim on the end of the rafters that often holds the gutters.
  • Winterguard: waterproofing shingle underlayment – key in fighting water penetration

Factors that affect new roof costs

Now that you understand the complexity and interconnectedness of your roof replacement, here are five factors that will impact the cost:

  • Size

    The biggest factor in determining how much it will cost to replace your roof is the size of your roof. The cost of roof replacement is calculated in terms of roofing squares; one roofing square is 10 feet by 10 feet, or 100 square feet. Whenever possible, we use state-of-the-art, satellite technology to precisely measure the roof of your home. This ensures the right amount of roofing materials are ordered—thereby saving costs and reducing waste—and helps provide a better estimate on how long the project will take.

  • Removal

    Before a new roof can be installed, your roofing professional will need to remove and dispose of the old roof, which can include layers of old shingles and underlayment. Any debris must be moved to a proper landfill site, which typically charges by the weight of the materials. The costs associated with this process depend on the amount of time and labor it takes to remove the old materials, as well as the landfill charges.

  • Style & Shape

    The slope of a roof can make a big difference in determining the cost of replacement. The slope is the angle of incline and indicates the vertical rise compared to the horizontal run. For example, if your roof’s slope is 6:12, it means the roof rises six inches vertically for every 12 inches it runs horizontally. The steeper the slope of the roof, the more shingles it takes to cover it. In addition, a roof with a very steep slope requires greater staging and safety equipment, which can cost more.

  • Materials

    There can be a major cost difference between the different types of roofing materials. Asphalt is generally the most affordable option, with slate and shake, or wood shingles being the most labor-intensive and the most expensive. Five Points Roofing has a whole range of shingle options, including luxury and designer asphalt shingles.

  • Features

    Chimneys, skylights and vents can improve the look of your roof but for a roofing contractor, these features can all be potential obstacles to carefully work around during the installation process.

Paying for your new roof 

Roof replacement is an important investment. The good news — there are plenty of financing options available to make sure you’re not breaking the bank, shingle by shingle.

Five Points Roofing has convenient financing that fits every homeowner’s budget. We work hard to keep our financing options as simple as possible. Our goal is to give you the peace of mind you need.

storm damage

Help! I Have Storm Damage!

Strong winds, heavy rains, scorching sun and massive snowfall – your home’s roof takes a beating 365 days a year.

This year’s spring weather has been particularly damaging to roofs across the country. Hail storms and tornadoes damaged the roofs of two residence halls and the sports coliseum at Jacksonville State University in Alabama, a thunder and hail storm in Sacramento caused leaks and soaked 250 books at the California State Library, and the mid-Atlantic and New England got pummeled by no fewer than four nor’easter snowstorms in less than three weeks.

All of these annual and relentless weather events can leave you with a damaged roof and even cause leaks that can impact your home’s interior.

What storm damage might look like

Sometimes, the signs of a damaged roof are pretty obvious, like water spots on a ceiling or curled, buckling or missing roof shingles. You may also see broken or damaged roof flashing, wet walls, water issues around your home’s exterior, or winter ice damming.

What to look for:

  • Shingle condition. Missing shingles are one obvious sign, but pay attention to the granule buildup on your shingles as well as early signs of damage. Hail storms can cause dings and dents in asphalt shingles and should be noted as well.
  • Missing flashing along the edges of the roof and along skylights, vents, and chimneys.
  • Loose or pealing sealant along those same penetration points.
  • Water damage in the attic or along the ceiling.

Other time, the signs aren’t so obvious, which is when it might be time to call in a professional roofing expert. The National Roofing Contractors Association recommends that homeowners get their roof inspected by a professional twice a year—once in the fall and once in the spring.

How to start the process of roof replacement

Once you’ve assessed the damage, the next step to replacing your roof is to request an estimate.

At Long Roofing, an expert will sit down with you and your family to select the perfect roofing materials — from the protective underlayment to the shingles that will cover your whole roof system.

We’ll also work through financing options, discuss warranty packages, and accommodate your schedule to find the perfect day to complete your new roof installation.

What your homeowners insurance covers

Homeowners insurance and roofing.

Figuring out what your homeowners insurance covers and does not cover can be confusing.

Homeowners insurance covers your roof in cases where it is damaged for reasons outside of the homeowner’s control – a few examples are fire and vandalism. Your policy will also usually cover damage from extreme weather events or “acts of God” like hurricanes and tornadoes. Similarly, roof damage caused by moderate weather incidents such as hail, wind, and rain are often covered by homeowners insurance.

When filing a claim, it’s important to thoroughly document any damage that occurred. Also, make sure you keep receipts for all work done on the home. Many policies will cover these expenses when submitted with a claim.

However, keep in mind that coverage will often depend on the age of your roof, the area you live in, and may other factors. The easiest way to know what’s covered or what’s not when it comes to storm damage is to contact your insurance provider and go over the specifics of your policy, including what’s covered and what your deductible may (or may not) be.

What your warranty looks like

When you purchase a new whole roof system, that roof will come with its own warranty. But not all roof warranties are the same. In fact, many homeowners learn the hard way that most roof warranties only cover the cost of materials or just manufacturer or installation defects—not weather-related issues.

Beware of storm chasers

Roof storm chasers.

The last and final point we’ll make about natural disasters is that they can be a magnet for dishonest contractors.

“Unfortunately, severe storms can bring out the worst in people, especially unscrupulous roofing contractors who scam consumers needing to repair or replace their storm-damaged roofs,” the Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety said after Denver’s record-breaking hail storm in 2017. “These fraudsters will often make false promises, insist on full payment before work begins or is completed. Sometimes, they will even create damage where none existed.”

Do your due diligence when choosing a roofing contractor. Check with local and state agencies to find out if your anticipated contractor is licensed and qualified to do the work.

6 Questions To Ask A Roofer

Be sure your roofer can answer questions about their location, insurance and more.

Before hiring a roofing company, there are certain questions you should ask. A poor job can mean costly roof repairs and leaks in the future, which means more time and money spent. Ask a roofer the following questions before making a hiring decision:

1. What is your full company name and physical address?

Ask for the roofing company’s full name and address. If they use a Post Office box, ask for the physical location. A roofing company that doesn’t have a physical location is a cause for concern, and you should move on. Check Angie’s List to find a reliable roof repair or roof replacement company in your area.

RELATED: Hiring a Roofer: It’s not an Estimate, It’s an Interview

2. Do you have insurance?

Roofing contractors should have workmans’ compensation and liability insurance to protect the homeowner in the event of an accident. Workers’ compensation protects the homeowner if a roofing company’s employee gets injured, and liability protects you from damage caused by the roofers during repair or replacement.

Without workmans’ compensation insurance, the homeowner may be responsible for medical bills and other costs associated with the injury. Your homeowners’ insurance may not cover these types of accidents, so you will be personally responsible for the costs.

workers doing roof repair on a home

Some contractors use subcontractors for roofing jobs. Make sure you get lien waivers to protect yourself if your contractor doesn’t pay them.. (Photo courtesy of Colin Kessler)

3. Do you use roofing subcontractors?

Ask whether any part of the job will be performed by a subcontractor. If so, make sure you ask these same questions of the roofing subcontractor — particularly ask whether they are insured.

MORE: What is a Contractor Lien Release or Subcontractor Lien Waiver?

4. Do you have a roofing contractor license?

Ask the roofing contractor if he or she is licensed by your city or state. Licensing requirements vary by state. Some cities and counties also require a contractor to be licensed. Verify whether a license is required in your area, and if it is, check with your local licensing offices to make sure your roofer’s license is up to date and doesn’t have any outstanding violations.

MORE: What Information Should Be in a Roofing Estimate?

A business license is not the same as a roofing contractor license. A business license is for tax purposes and identifies the company. It does not mean the person has passed a test or is qualified to work as a roofer.

5. Do you have homeowner references?

Ask for local residential job sites you can visit and check previous roofing work. You can also ask for references, but sometimes past customers do not want their personal information released or a contractor cherry picks a couple of happy customers. Follow up with the homeowners and ask whether they are happy with the roofing job completed by the contractor.

6. Do you offer a warranty for your roofing work?

Ask how long the roof repair company guarantees its work. A roof warranty typically lasts for a year, but some roofers offer longer warranties. The manufacturer usually covers the materials, and the roofer covers the work. These are two separate warranties, so ask the roofer what is covered under each warranty and the length of each.

As always, give 5 Points Roofing a call today and we’ll help walk you through the process!