ROOFING - Choosing and Contracting a reliable Roofer so you don't get ripped off
It's no secret that a small minority of bad tradesmen or "cowboy builders" have given the honest and experienced tradesmen a bad reputation.
This has also happened within the roofing trade. However, many roofers are honest, hard-working and will do an excellent job for you.
For most people, their home is their biggest and most precious asset, and the roof protects its contents from bad weather.
Additionally, fixing or replacing your roof can cost a significant amount of money.
The more research you do and questions you ask before you begin, the less likely it is that you will be ripped off.
Few people go up to see the work that has been done, either because they do not have the equipment to go up and check, or because it is
not safe to do so. Therefore, it is very important to choose a roofer who will do a good job. Remember that not every roofer is out to rip you off.
However, there are certain precautions so that you avoid any nasty surprises at the end of the job.
Where will you find a good roofer?
It is of paramount importance that you do thorough research when deciding which roofing company to employ.
You will see ads for roofers in newspapers, magazines, telephone directories and on the internet, to name but a few.
See if you can get any
from people who you know and trust, friends who have used a particular roofer in the past. You should also contact or check out various
trade association members' directories. The vast majority of members of a trade association or will be trustworthy and professional, as
such as The FairTrades Association have strict membership requirements, insist that their members work to specific
code of conduct
and offer their customers insurance to back up their personal warranties.
What to ask:
- How long have you been in business?
- Have you done similar jobs to this one?
- Can I see your track record?
- What are your insurance backed guarantees?
- Do you have sufficient personal liability and trade insurance in place?
- How much do you think it will cost for materials?
- How much do you think it will cost for labour?
- How do you take payment, and when do you expect payment?
- What if I'm not happy with the work?
What to look for:
- A professional and experienced company
- A business with a physical location and working telephone number
- Authentic testimonials and a proven track record
- A company that can provide you with written quotes and paperwork
- A warranty on any work done
- All of the appropriate insurance, so that both of you are covered
- Someone who will thoroughly inspect your roof before giving you a quote
Who you need to avoid
You need to avoid any tradesmen / company who cannot or will not answer all the aforementioned questions your satisfaction, or does not
meet your requirements. If a company seems dodgy and have no proven track record, it is advisable not to use them. FairTrades Association
is always very keen to highlight the fact that many new companies are set up by extremely professional and very experienced mean and woman
who have worked for many years in their industry for another employer and you should take this fact into consideration when choosing your tradesmen.
Please do not summarily dismiss a tradesman simply because his business is just 6 months old, he may have some of the best roofing and business
experience in the market!
You should however avoid any company that comes across as they are willing to take shortcuts to save you or
themselves money! The industry refers to them as "cowboy traders" and you could end up loosing the roof over your head in more than one!
If they come across as unprofessional in any way, pester you on the phone for a sale or go for the hard sell on your doorstep you should walk
away immediately. Remember that the cheapest quote is not always the best, sometimes it pays to shop around. It's your money and your home,