Hiring an Atlanta Roofing Contractor
While many roofing problems are caused by natural wear or accidental
damage, some result from improper installation by roofers who simply do
not know what they are doing. Knowing what to look for in an Atlanta
roofing contractor and what to ask for once you find one can go a long
way towards making sure you the best finished product.
Waiting for the right company. Your first impulse after finding a leak will be to get it fixed as soon
as possible. Remember, good roofing companies are often very busy right
after a big rain. If you find an Atlanta roofing company that isn't
busy, there might be a reason for that. Be patient and wait until a
good company can fit you in. Many homeowners have paid twice for their
roofs: once to have it done by a less-reputable contractor, and a
second time to have it redone correctly by a reputable one.
Door-to-door sales. Most
reputable Atlanta roofers do not go door to door looking for sales
leads. Do your homework and compare estimates from several Atlanta
roofing contractors before making a decision. Once you get written
quotes from several Atlanta roofers, remember that sometimes a straight
price comparison is insufficient. For example, if one company is
offering a 20-year shingle while another company is offering a 40-year
shingle, you must do a few calculations to perform the comparison.
Additionally, many homeowners have found that quotes that seem too good
to be true usually are too good to be true. Some less-reputable
companies may offer an incredibly low price by taking questionable
Toe boards. Some roofing
contractors will cut costs by doing things such as not re-nailing loose
decking. Instead, these companies simply hammer down the nails that pop
up during tear-off. Another way some roofing companies cut costs is by
nailing their toe boards into your roof. Toe boards are temporary wood
strips the roofer stands upon while working on steep pitch roofs. Some
less-professional roofers nail these boards through the face of the
shingles, thus creating holes in them. This practice weakens the roof
and can create leak problems, either immediately or a few years down
the road. Unfortunately, when problems emerge, the roofer who caused
them is often difficult to locate. Good roofers have specially designed
brackets that attach the toe boards under the shingles.
Types of roofs. Most
Atlanta roofs are traditional composite shingle or textured shingle
roofs. However, other specialty roofs such as slate, tile, cedar shake,
and metal are also common. If you have or want to have a specialty
roof, choose an Atlanta roofing contractor with experience with that
Insurance. Make sure the
Atlanta roofing company you choose carries both workers' compensation
and liability insurance. Because of the dangers inherent in working on
a roof, workers' compensation and liability insurance are a significant
cost to a roofing company. Since the cost of the insurance is high,
some companies do not carry it. This practice is a shortcut some
companies take to underbid the competition.
Once you select an Atlanta roofing company, there are several things
you should be sure the company does before the work is complete.
Before you start. First,
make sure your roofing contractor removes or blocks old roof vents,
turbine vents and gable end vents when they install a ridge vent. If
not, the vents will disrupt air flow. Before your Atlanta roofer
replaces any decking, insist he or she sets aside the damaged decking
so you can be sure it is actually damaged. Make sure your roofer nails
all loose decking to the rafters with new cement-coated sinkers, or the
equivalent, prior to new installation.
Cleanup. Cleanup is one
area where you may need to be especially clear with your Atlanta
roofing contractor on expectations. Levels of cleanup deemed acceptable
by roofers vary greatly, anywhere from a yard full of debris and nails
to a yard that looks the way it did before the roofing job. Make sure
your roofing company walks over your entire yard with a large magnet on
wheels to pick up any stray nails.
Rain damage. If your
Atlanta roofing job involves tearing off your old roof, make sure at
the end of the day your roof is covered in case it rains. If a heavy
rain occurs while the house has no roof, severe damage can result. Some
roofers will take chances by tearing off the entire roof at once.
Insist your roofer either tears off and replaces a section at a time or
uses large tarps to cover the work area.
Now that you know what questions to ask and what to insist on,
browse the Atlanta roofing contractors who made the Home Reports Best