Home > News

Questions to ask a roofing contractor before you let them on your roof

Posted March 18, 2016

Archived Content Information and links provided may no longer be accurate.
men working on a roof
Make sure you don't pay more later by hiring a contractor that is uninsured, performs substandard work or leaves North Texas shortly after the storms do.

After the St. Patrick’s Day storm dumped hail and rain on many parts of Fort Worth, residents will be searching for roofing contractors and wondering how they can get the work done in a professional and cost-effective way.

In Texas, there is no such thing as state licensing for roofers, and insurance is not required. Anyone can hang up a shingle — no pun intended — and call themselves a roofing company.

When storms hit North Texas, it’s not uncommon to see an influx of out-of-town roofers — “storm chasers” — who often leave town not long after the storms do.

How can you determine, as a homeowner, if you’re hiring a legitimate, experienced roofer who will be around after the storm season? Here are some important questions that the North Texas Roofing Contractors Association recommends asking about any roofing company you may be considering:

  1. Are they in good standing with the Better Business Bureau?
  2. Are they a member of a roofing association that holds its members to high standards, such as the North Texas Roofing Contractors Association, the National Roofing Contractors Association, the Roofing Contractors Association of Texas or the Midwest Roofing Contractors Association?
  3. How many years of experience do they have as a roofing contractor in North Texas?
  4. Are they insured? What type of insurance coverage do they have and what and how much does it cover? Don’t hesitate to ask a roofing contractor for a certificate of insurance and make sure the coverage is in effect throughout your project. You don’t want to be liable for accidents that occur on your property (and you will be if the contractor is not properly insured).
  5. Who will supervise your roofing project? How much experience do they have? How can you contact that person?
  6. Where is the roofing company located? Has your prospective contractor just come to town with the storms? Drive by and check out their business address. You probably don’t want to hire a roofer who is operating out of his pickup truck or a temporary post office box.
  7. What is the roofing contractor’s warranty on labor? What is the manufacturer’s warranty? Get warranty information in writing. Consider how long your contractor has been in business and where they are located when looking at their labor warranty.
  8. Do they have credit references? Ask for a list of local suppliers, and call them to ensure the roofing contractor is in good standing. You don’t want to be left footing the bill for roofing materials.
  9. Do they have customer references they can provide? Get a list of previous customers and call them.
  10. Will they give you a detailed, written proposal with complete descriptions of the work, start and completion dates and payment schedule?
  11. Is the contractor going to obtain the appropriate City of Fort Worth permits?
  12. Are they asking for money upfront? End users should beware of paying before the job is complete. A partial payment for materials, however, after they have been delivered to your project location, is not unusual.
  13. Which roofing manufacturers are they certified to install? You can go to the manufacturer’s website to see which roofing contractors are certified to install their roofing system.
  14. Is the roofer offering to “take care of” or “eat” your insurance deductible? Talk directly to your insurance company to ensure that any “deal” is legitimate and not insurance fraud.
  15. Are they claiming they are licensed? If so, where? Ask to see their license.
  16. If the bid is significantly lower than their competitors, why? If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Price is only one consideration when selecting a roofing contractor. Also, a price that is significantly below other contractors’ costs is an indicator that the roofing materials being used may be stolen goods, a growing problem in North Texas that is a federal offense.

To learn more, contact Karen Vermaire Fox, executive director of the North Texas Roofing Contractors Association, at 817-480-1060.

This article is available in Spanish.

Get articles like this in your inbox weekly. Subscribe to City News

City News

Calendar

Lights On After School: 5 p.m. Oct. 19, 2017; Greenbriar Community Center, 5200 Hemphill St.

Trinity River Public Facility Corporation: 5 p.m. Oct. 19, 2017; Fort Worth Housing Solutions, 1201 East 12th Street.
Register for this event »

Fort Worth Housing Solutions: 5 p.m. Oct. 19, 2017; FWHS Administrative Office Board Room, 1201 East 13th Street.
View the agenda »

Artist Talk: Kipp Kobayashi: 5:30 p.m. Oct. 19, 2017; Art7 Gallery, 2831 West 7th St.

Stormwater Master Plan Stakeholder Meeting: 6 p.m. Oct. 19, 2017; Hazel Harvey Peace Center for Neighborhoods, 818 Missouri Ave.

Composting Water-Saving Seminar: 6 p.m. Oct. 19, 2017; Fort Worth Botanic Garden, Iris Room, 3220 Botanic Garden Blvd.
Register for this event »

Pedestrian and Bicycle Advisory Commission: 6 p.m. Oct. 19, 2017; Conference Room, Tarrant Regional Water District, 800 E. Northside Drive.
View the agenda »

Human Relations Commission 50th Anniversary Celebration: 8 a.m. Oct. 20, 2017; A.D. Marshall Public Safety and Courts Building, 1000 Throckmorton St.

Public Art Dedication at Meacham International Airport: 10 a.m. Oct. 20, 2017; Meacham International Airport Administration Building, 201 American Concourse (Off N. Main Street).

Minority and Women Business Enterprise Advisory Committee Meeting: 11:30 a.m. Oct. 20, 2017; James E. Guinn Building, First floor, PharmaFab Conference Room No 116, 1150 South Freeway.
View the agenda »

Fall Festival: 7 p.m. Oct. 20, 2017; Fire Station Community Center, 1601 Lipscomb St.

Code Rangers: 9 a.m. Oct. 21, 2017; Hazel Harvey Peace Center for Neighborhoods, 818 Missouri Ave, Fort Worth, TX 76104.

Crud Cruiser Mobile Waste Collection: 9 a.m. Oct. 21, 2017; Gateway Church, 4205 Basswood Blvd .

Homeless Event: Mile in My Shoes: 11 a.m. Oct. 21, 2017; Southside Community Center, 959 E. Rosedale St.

Worth Heights Oktoberfest: 6 p.m. Oct. 21, 2017; Worth Heights Community Center, 3551 New York Ave.

Building Standards Commission Pre-Meeting: 9 a.m. Oct. 23, 2017; City Council Conference Room 290, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.
View the agenda »

Building Standard Commission Meeting: 9:30 a.m. Oct. 23, 2017; Council Chamber, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.
View the agenda »

Fort Worth Transportation Authority Commuter Rail Committee Working Session: 3:30 p.m. Oct. 23, 2017; 2nd Floor Community Room, Intermodal Transportation Center, 1001 Jones Street.
View the agenda »

Fort Worth Transportation Authority Planning, Operations & Marketing Committee Working Session: 4 p.m. Oct. 23, 2017; 2nd Floor Community Room, Intermodal Transportation Authority, 1001 Jones Street.
View the agenda »

Fort Worth Transportation Authority Finance & Audit Committee Working Session: 4:30 p.m. Oct. 23, 2017; 2nd Floor Community Room, Intermodal Transportation Authority, 1001 Jones Street.
View the agenda »

2018 Bond Election Public Meeting City Wide: 6:30 p.m. Oct. 23, 2017; Botanic Garden Lecture Hall, 3220 Botanic Garden Boulevard.

Las Vegas Trail Revitalization Project Meeting: 8:30 a.m. Oct. 24, 2017; Birchman Baptist Church, 9100 N. Normandale St.

Fort Worth City Council and Appointed Officials Conversation About Race and Culture: 10 a.m. Oct. 24, 2017; Oak Hall, Deborah Beggs Moncrief Garden Center, 3220 Botanic Garden Boulevard.
View the agenda »

Senior Spooky Social: 10 a.m. Oct. 24, 2017; Hillside Community Center, 1201 E. Maddox Ave.

Audit Committee: 1 p.m. Oct. 24, 2017; City Council Conference Room 290, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.

Fort Worth Housing Finance Corporation: 2 p.m. Oct. 24, 2017; City Council Conference Room 290, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.

City Council Work Session: 3 p.m. Oct. 24, 2017; City Council Conference Room 290, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.

Firefighters' and Police Officer' Civil Service Commission: 6 p.m. Oct. 24, 2017; Planning and Development Conference Room, Lower Level, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.
View the agenda »

City Council Meeting: 7 p.m. Oct. 24, 2017; City Council Chambers, Second Floor, City Hall, 200 Texas Street.

Board of Directors of Metropolitan Area EMS Authority D/B/A MedsStar Mobile Healthcare: 10 a.m. Oct. 25, 2017; MedStar Mobile Healthcare, 2900 Alta Mere Dr.
View the agenda »

View the full city calendar.