If you own an old or outdated flat roof in Troy or the surrounding Central North Carolina region, you may want to hire a flat roofing company to inspect the roof and replace it. Before replacing a flat roof, however, it is critical that you have educated yourself and asked a few clarifying question. By having this discussion with a contractor, it will help you make a more informed decision. Below is a list of essential questions to ask any roofing contractor in Troy before you hire one to help you with replacing a flat roof.

Essential Questions to Ask Before Replacing a Flat Roof

Are You a Local Flat Roofing Contractor?

The most vulnerable you will ever be as a homeowner is the first week after a major storm such as a tornado or hurricane has come through and caused area-wide damage. The term ‘storm chaser’ doesn’t just happen in movies. Mobile roofing contractors follow storms and then hit up the victims within hours. They’re aggressive, and they will offer you the deal of a lifetime. While some of them are credible, most of them are not. Once they leave town, you’ll probably never see them again. Buyer beware!

Are You Licensed and Certified in the State of North Carolina?

Licensing and certification are not the same things. Every contractor has to register with the state of North Carolina to get a license to operate legally.

There are two types of certification:

State certifications: Anyone performing what would be considered ‘professional-level roofing’ must obtain certification in specified areas. (i.e., residential roofing vs. commercial roofing).
Manufacturer certification: Roofing manufacturers often require contractors and their employees to take certification courses to use their products. Certification is necessary to support warranties.

It’s important to ask about certification and licensing. Be specific with your questions. If a company cannot provide verification of being certified or licensed, don’t hire them.

Are Your Employees Insured for Replacing a Flat Roof?

Your primary concern here is to verify that all employees on the job are covered by some insurance (workers comp, medical, accidental, etc.) so that it doesn’t come back on you if there’s an injury.

What Are Your Flat Roofing Credentials?

Credentials are proof that a contractor can deliver more than just a certificate. Here’s how you can find out more information:

Website. Are they online? Do they have a website? Are there Google reviews or site reviews? In many cases, an online presence can tell you a lot about a company.
Experience. How long have you been in business? How long have you been doing this type of roofing (in this case, flat roofing)?
References. Get at least three and follow up on them. Previous clients will often tell you the facts.
Portfolio. There are two reasons for portfolios: The first is so that you can see the level of quality in their work and products. Second, sometimes it’s not about the best contractor, but rather the one who produces the type of design and style you prefer.

Do You Have a Contract? What Does It Cover?

Whatever you do, read the contract. Don’t assume anything. Read every word and ask questions if you do not understand what you are reading? Take your time and go over it with the contractor present.

What Does Your Roofing Warranty Cover?

There are two types of warranties: manufacturer and workmanship. Generally (but not always) speaking, the manufacturer warranty covers all materials. The workmanship (i.e. job warranty, labor warranty, contractor’s warranty) warranty covers the contractor’s overall performance. For instance, if you’re having a new flat roof installed, all the materials that went directly into the roof will be covered under the manufacturer warranty. The workmanship warranty covers the installation of the materials by the contractor.

Note: Sometimes these are one in the same or overlap depending on how the contractor writes the warranty. Each company has their version and conditions. Read the entire warranty word for word – leave nothing out. Ask questions to clarify anything you do not understand.

Does Your Roofing Company Offer Free Estimates or Inspections?

Although most people see estimates and inspections as interchangeable, there is a potential difference: whether or not the contractor provides them for free. Whichever is the case, don’t expect or assume a free estimate or inspection. There is no moral imperative, work ethic, or law that governs whether or not a contractor will offer his or her time for free.

Here’s the difference between an inspection and an estimate:

An inspection requires no further work. The contractor arrives on-site, makes an assessment and submits a report of the work to be done.
An Estimate goes a step further. When a contractor draws up an estimate, he/she usually has to inspect the site, develop plans (where applicable), crunch the numbers and then submit the estimate to the client. Putting this together can be time-consuming. Thus, the contractor will charge for the time spent putting together the estimate.

What Material are Flat Roofs Made Of?

Before replacing a flat roof, it’s important to know what type of products the contractor will be installing. Besides the obvious, flat roofs require various types of roofing material. For example, a standard gable roof, or something similar pitched roof, might use modern metal roofing, shingles, tile, or other types of roofing. These types of roofing materials do not necessarily work on a flat roof. Homeowners have better options such as built-up roofing (BUR), Modified Bitumen, or Rubber membrane.

If you are looking for a roofing contractor to help you with replacing a flat roof, then contact Montgomery Contractors today. We provide comprehensive roofing service for residential and commercial properties in Troy and the surrounding Central North Carolina area. Call us at (910) 220-2172 or email us at info@carolinaflatroofing.com.