The Importance of Choosing A Certified Roofing Contractor
For most people, their home is the greatest asset they own. Not only because of its value, but also because of the protection it offers and provides to those family members living within it. However, when buying a home, most consumers look at the kitchen, the living space, and the layout, while rarely considering the roof, which is the shield that will not only protect their family, but also those aspects of the house which sold them on it in the first place. When a roof is left without proper consideration and maintenance, it can lead to leaks, mold, and structural issues which can worsen quickly and lend themselves to concerns which never seemed likely just a short while prior. Although these neglect stories might seem rare to the typical consumer, here at Gauthier Roofing and Siding, we hear them all too often. So how do you protect yourself from these potential roof problems?
Schedule annual roofing inspections and any necessary maintenance checks on your roof.
This doesn’t mean going up on the roof yourself and looking around. This means calling a roofing professional who is trained and who will be able to identify issues, potential issues and early warning signs prior to them ever becoming a real problem. This is someone who’s a roofing specialist and who will be able to inspect and diagnose your roof and provide you with a great deal of peace of mind. This doesn’t mean flagging down the first roofer you see. Rather, to ensure it is analyzed properly, it means reaching out to a certified roofing contractor.
What is the difference between a trained and certified roofing contractor and a typical roofer?
Great question, and one most people never consider. Unfortunately, in the roofing industry, there are a lot of outfits and individuals who at some point decide they want to make a quick buck. So, they buy a nail gun, borrow a truck, call themselves XYZ Roofing and start selling jobs to unaware consumers who are thrilled at the thought of getting a great deal on a new roof. Now, although it is never our intention to criticize or put any other roofing contractor down, it is our company and the other high quality certified roofing contractors who get the call when the job is done poorly and the roof they’ve had installed is nothing like the roof they were initially promised. The reason this issue is so rampant is due to the fact that the roofing industry is what is called an unregulated industry. This means there is no trade school, diploma program, course, certificate, or minimum standard which someone needs to go through or meet prior to opening a roofing business. Sadly, this is what causes many consumers to hire contractors who simply are not qualified, and who do not posses the necessary skill and training to be able to effectively provide the highest quality of work and craftsmanship.
That’s why you need to look for a certified roofing contractor
You see, many Roofing Material Manufacturers began to recognize this very problem and realized there was actually something they could do about it. They began to develop factory certified training programs, where roofing contractors needed to be have specific credentials and be approved, then if their installers were able to pass the rigorous standards set forth by the manufacturer, they would be awarded with a factory certified installers certificate.
Maybe You’re Wondering How This Benefits You and Your Homes Future Roof?
Another great question, first and foremost, it gives the consumer the advantage of being able to request whether a contractor is factory certified to install a particular roofing product. Also, it means the roofing technicians are trained specifically on how to work with and install their specific roofing product properly and have committed to doing so to maintain their certification. This ensures your roof will truly last the test of time because it is installed “right” by skilled and trained professionals…. And last but not least, because these manufacturers know their products are being installed properly, they grant and permit these “elite” contractors to offer “enhanced warranty coverage” meaning a roof warranty provided by a certified roofing contractor covers more and covers a far greater amount of time beyond what the typical roofing company can offer.
How Can I Be Sure My Roofing Contractor is certified?
Ask to see proof! Any roofing company who is certified, would be more than happy to show you their factory certification. This is because these certifications are considered somewhat of a “badge of honor” inside the roofing industry. But don’t stop there, if they claim they are certified, ask who the certification is through, go to that specific roofing product manufacturers website, and search for the company. Almost all of these manufacturers have a factory certified installers directory which will allow you to confirm they truly are. Also, when searching for a contractor online, it’s a great idea to review their website and look to see whether they mention if they are factory certified. As mentioned before, any roofing company who IS certified is going to be promoting it.
Are you looking for a factory certified roofing contractor in the Windsor ON area?
If so, be sure to reach out to us here at Gauthier Roofing and Siding. We are not just factory certified, but a GAF Master Elite Contractor which is their highest credential allowing us to offer all, not just some, of their enhanced warranty options. GAF was founded in 1886 and is the largest roofing manufacturer in all of North America. For greater peace of mind, take advantage of our GAF Master Elite Certification. Due to GAF’s stringent standards less than 3% of all roofing contractors in North America have achieved this elite certification status. Click here to request a roofing estimate today.
What to Look for When Hiring a Roofing
Company in Windsor
When your roof needs repair or replacement, it’s not something you want to leave to the last minute. But just because you need it fixed promptly doesn’t mean you should hire the first contractor you find. Also, oftentimes temporary repairs can be done to protect your home until the roof can be replaced, allowing you more time to make the right decisions. Sometimes these repairs are done for free, with a commitment to replace the complete roof.
When selecting a roofing company, you want to hire one that is reliable, preferably local, and is going to do the job right the first time. Here are some traits in a Windsor roofing company to look out for.
Manufacturer certification is essentially a badge of honor for home improvement companies. Contractors awarded certification must maintain a specific set of standards, which are approved by their manufacturers.
Roofing manufacturers take their certification programs seriously and you should too. For example, GAF – North America’s largest roofing manufacturer – has a strict acceptance system for companies that are certified to use their products. Their top certification – Master Elite – is only awarded to 2% of roofing contractors in North America.
Certification also allows contractors to offer special enhanced warranty coverage, which is going to protect you in the long run. For example, a Master Elite designation means the customer can get a 25-year “workmanship” warranty and 50-year non-pro-rated coverage against manufacturing defects.
Check Better Business Bureau (BBB) Ratings
The Better Business Bureau is a non-profit organization that assigns rankings to businesses and charities. Their accreditations are a well-regarded stamp of approval and should give you peace of mind knowing that the company you are dealing with is legitimate and works within a framework of high standards.
When a destructive storm comes through your neighborhood, you’d be surprised by just how many roofing companies suddenly pop up. Checking to see if a company is registered with the BBB is an effective method for learning more about a business and its history. It is also helpful to actually visit the business’ office to get a better understanding of how they run their company and respect their space. Even just searching their address on the internet will allow you to see if the company has an actual business establishment or just works from their home.
Positive Local Reviews
Speaking with friends, neighbors, and relatives is an ideal way to find a quality roofing company. Hearing from people you trust will give you honest insight into how a company operates and treats their clients.
Reading online reviews and testimonials is another great way to learn about a company and see what other customers have experienced. There are various websites dedicated to reviews and it is helpful to check these sites out to get a complete picture.
It could also be useful to ask the company if they themselves can put you in contact with recent customers. Even better, see if they will let you actually go and check out recently completely jobs or projects still in the works.
Commitment to Safety and Training
Safety should be a priority on both your mind and your contractor’s. Within the home improvement industry are a number of training and educational programs. The manufacturing company GAF even sponsors a national training program called the Center for the Advancement of Roofing Excellence.
This particular program has trained over 230,000 professionals in North America. Check with your potential roofing contractor to see if their employees have been trained in programs like these.
Does The Roofing Company Require a Deposit?
Be wary of roofing companies that ask you to put down a deposit. The company you hire should be confident enough in their abilities and have enough financial stability to complete a roofing project without requiring the money upfront for materials.
You should never put down a deposit that is higher than 10% of the total payment for the work. Ideally you should work with a contractor who doesn’t ask for a deposit at all.
Confirm the Company Has Proper Insurance
All employees who work for the company you choose should be insured and the contractor should be able to provide you with proof of insurance (liability and WSIB) upon request. This is extremely important because if employees are not properly insured, there is higher potential for litigation involving the homeowner should something go wrong.
Don’t allow yourself to fall prey to scammers and illegitimate businesses. This is why it’s so important to work with local businesses that are a part of the community with proven track records of success.
What Does the Best Roofing Company Look Like?
Finding the right roofing company can be overwhelming, but that’s why it is so important to do the research. It’s so you can feel confident in your choices as you’ll potentially be living with your decision for decades.
At Gauthier Roofing and Siding, we’ve been servicing the Windsor area for over 50 years. Check out our website to learn more about our company, manufacturer certifications, services, awards and customer reviews!