When it comes to a house, it can be argued that the roof is the most important component. Unfortunately, roofs don't last forever and an old or damaged roof will eventually need to be replaced. Since a new roof can be a big financial investment, it is essential to make sure that the job is done right. Continue reading to learn more about the top things you need to know when replacing a roof:
Choose a Roofing Contractor Carefully
One of the most important aspects of replacing your roof is choosing a roofing contractor for the job. It is well worth your time to research the different roofing contractors in your area. While the price of a new roof is a factor for many people, you should not automatically hire the roofing contractor that offers the lowest price quote. It is important to hire a roofing contractor that is licensed and don't be afraid to ask a roofing contractor for references.
Strip the Roof
People sometimes choose to only replace the top layer of shingles or place new shingles over old ones in order to safe some money. This is actually not a good idea -- it is much better to completely strip the roof and then have a new roof installed. If you fail to completely strip the roof, your roofing contractor will not be able to inspect the roof decking or flashing, so problems may go undetected.
Don't Forget the Building Permit
In many areas, local authorities require a building permit in order for a new roof to be installed. If you're replacing your roof, make sure that you are aware of any permits that you need to obtain in advance. A reputable local roofing contractor should know the rules and regulations in your area.
Always Have a Contract
Having a new roof installed is a major project, so you always need a contract in place to protect your interest as well as the interests of the roofing contractor doing the job. Your contract should include a line by line itemization that includes the price of all materials and labor. It should also include how long the project will take and whether or not the roofing contractor will haul away the old materials. If the roofing contractor does not haul away the old materials, make sure you make arrangements to rent a large dumpster.
Proof of Insurance
Before your roofing project begins, make sure you ask your roofing contractor for proof of insurance. A properly insured contractor should have no problem providing proof of liability and workers compensation insurance. Having proof of insurance is very important in order to protect yourself financially -- if a roofing contractor does not have the right insurance you could be held liable if anyone is hurt on your property.