Drip. Drip. Drip. Is your roof trying to tell you something? Like, maybe it’s time to finally fix those leaks or that it’s ready for retirement? Whether you need a small roof repair or an entirely new roof altogether, it’s crucial to choose the right roofing contractor in San Diego. The health of your roof impacts the quality of your life and the value of your home. Before you dial the very first San Diego roofing contractor that comes up in the search engines, do your homework and start your search as an educated consumer. We’ve worked with hundreds of homeowners throughout San Diego, and here are the five things we wish every customer knew before they hired a roofing contractor.
Don’t Hire Day Laborers or a “Guy with a Truck”
Here in San Diego, it’s not unusual to see day laborers hanging out at your favorite big home improvement stores ready to earn quick money. These guys may have some building experience, but that’s still a far cry from being a roofing expert!
While you’ll save money in the short-term by using a day laborer, you’re also taking a huge risk that may come back to bite you in the future. There’s no way for you to tell whether the day laborer knows what he’s doing. He could cause more damage to your roof, which you will then have to pay a professional company to fix later.
If you do discover a problem later on, you also have no recourse. Day laborers come and go, and even if you could track him down, che may not be able to cover the repair costs.
The prospect of saving money by hiring a day laborer or a “guy with truck” on Craigslist is tempting, but you are rolling the dice!
Know the Right Credentials for a San Diego Roofing Company
So we are a no-go on day laborers and the Jack-of-All-Trades. Now it’s time to look for the right type of San Diego roofing company. The roofing contractor you work with should be properly licensed, insured, and credentialed. It is crucial that the roofing contractor possess:
- General liability insurance
- Workers’ compensation insurance
- Written manufacturer warranties
- Roofing credentials
General liability insurance covers any damage to your property that a contractor causes during the job. For example, if a worker makes a mistake and part of the roof caves in, damaging your kitchen, the contractor’s liability insurance will cover the cost of your kitchen repair.
Workers’ compensation insurance is also extremely important. Even when a roofing contractor follows strict safety protocols, workers can still be injured. If this happens, the contractor’s insurance will cover their medical care.
NOTE: If a day laborer or “guy with truck” falls off your roof and breaks his leg, you could be responsible for his hefty medical bills. Just one more reason to hire a licensed and insured roofing company!
Good roofing contractors only work with roofing manufacturers that offer warranties on their roofing systems. These warranties cover things like the roofing materials as well as the work of the contractor. They provide important protections against flawed roofing materials or poor workmanship. Warranties also give homeowners peace of mind. After all the money you spend on repairing or overhauling your roof, it’s good to know that it’ll last a while. (At Semper Solaris, we are proud to work with top roofing manufacturers, including Owens Corning and GAF.)
Finally, you definitely want to hire a company that specializes in repairing roofs and possesses roofing credentials. Some remodeling and design contractors in San Diego will also claim to fix roofs, though they likely spend most of their time remodeling kitchens and master bathrooms. When it comes to roofing, they will likely hire a sub-contractor, which is not an ideal scenario.
Hire Local Roofing Contractors in San Diego
It isn’t unheard of for roofing companies to come trawling for clients after a big storm. You might get a knock on your door or find a flyer stuck on your porch from some out-of-town roofing company offering big savings for a quick roof repair.
There are many reasons to throw these flyers in the trash and work with a local roofing company instead. For one, we believe it’s a good idea to support local businesses who employ locally and contribute positively to the local economy. There are also more selfish reasons to pick a local roofing contractor.
Contractors who live and operate in your city know much more about local rules and code regulations as well as the common roofing styles and materials in the community. For example, roofing contractors in San Diego need to be highly familiar with clay and concrete tiles, which are very popular in the area.
There’s one more reason to hire locally. While out-of-town roofing companies can split if you aren’t happy with their work, local companies are here to stay. They live, work, and raise their families in their community and want it to thrive. This means that it is in their best interest to do excellent work. After all, they’re working on the houses of their neighbors!
Don’t Automatically Choose the Lowest Bidder
Would you eat at a roadside sushi vendor because it was the cheapest food available? We hope on behalf of your digestive system that the answer is no. In many cases, the cheapest option isn’t always the best option. Lower pricing often means rushed work, corners cut, poor overall quality, and a short product lifespan.
The same goes for roofing. A cheap roofing contractor may not have the correct license or be paying for workers’ compensation insurance or general liability insurance. Even if a company is licensed and insured, those cost cuts have to come from somewhere. They may use lower quality materials or underpay their staff. This means you won’t have highly experienced and motivated employees working on your roof. It all adds up to a higher risk of problems and a poor-quality roof repair!
Roof repairs aren’t cheap, but remember the adage:“You get what you pay for!”
Check Reviews and Testimonials
Top roofing contractors care deeply about making sure each customer is satisfied with their work. These companies rely on referrals, which means that it’s important to do a great job on every single project. They care about their reputation, and this should be obvious by the testimonials and reviews they receive from their clients.
As a consumer, check out each potential roofing contractor before signing any contracts. We recommend visiting the Better Business Bureau as well as popular review sites like Yelp and Angie’s List. See what real customers say about the way the company communicates, how well they stick to a timeline, whether they gave an accurate price proposal, and the quality of the workmanship.
It’s also a good idea to see how long a company has been around. A roofing company won’t survive long if they don’t do good work.
At Semper Solaris, we proudly point our potential customers to the major review sites where we have an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau and received a Super Service award from Angie’s List in 2016. High-quality roofing companies should want you to see their customer reviews!
Time to Schedule a Consultation
Now that you know to follow the recommendations above, you’ll be a savvy consumer who knows how to find a high-quality, honest, and reliable roofing contractor in San Diego. When it’s time to finally get started on that roof repair so you can stop annoying leaks or put on solar panels, we would appreciate the opportunity to compete for your business. Please contact us to schedule a free, no-pressure roof consultation.