Don't just talk to one contractor. Compile a list of several, interview them, and ask those you're impressed with to bid on your job. Some of the information you should collect from them includes:
- How long they've been in business;
- What type of insurance coverage they carry;
- Their business license number;
- Whether they hold the contracting licenses required by your state;
- Run a credit check;
- Ask for multiple references, and then call each and every one!
- You'll also want to pay attention to their professionalism and how enthused they are about their work;
- Check with your local Better Business Bureau as any trade associations that pertain to home building;
- You should also be sure to check the references they provided you.
Since contractors often meet unreliable homeowners, it's in your best interest to conduct your interviews in a manner that shows you're serious and can pay for their work.
Once you have interviewed the prospective contractors on your list, start collecting proposals from them. It's fine to narrow the field by getting estimates, but when it comes time to select someone, you need to put your agreement in writing in the form of a proposal. Things to consider include: product warranty and workmanship guarantees; what sort of building permits you'll need; hours of work and the project completion date; site safety and clean-up rules; information regarding any subcontractors they use, and proof of payment by your roofer. Make sure you have a well-written contract. You also need to specify the materials you choose and include details regarding how and when you'll pay as well as any laws regarding property liens if you can't pay on time.
Once you've hired a roofing contractor, be prepared to work closely with them when selecting colors and design. They possess the knowledge about materials and construction, but it's your house and you should be an active participant in making decisions.
The final step is to let your roofing contractor get to work. Choosing a contractor who is reliable, honest, and hardworking will allow you to enjoy your new roof even more.