Questions to Ask a Roofer Before You Sign a Contract


Once and a while I have to hire a roofer and was finding it hard to figure out which ones were lying about their abilities. So, I came up with a simple test to figure out how much they knew about roofing and was shocked at how little roofers know about their trade. To know if you’re working with an amateur, ask him to name the 4 types of metal around the chimney any good roofer can do this - fakers can’t. The 4 metals are Chim-5, Step Flashing, Pan metal, and Roof to wall.

Ask your roofer to tell you how he figures how to space the vents at the ridge of the house correctly I have never met a roofer yet who can answer this question. Have him write it on paper and call me I will tell you the answer.

Ask your roofer if he knows what wears out a roof. Answer: The radiation from the sun breaks down the oil in the shingle and the shingle loses the ability to expand and contract when the temperature changes. It then starts to crack, curl and become brittle.

Ask your roofer how he should clean the roof he is going to install than read my section on pressure washing a roof and see if he gets it.

Ask your roofer about vents after you have read the part about vents in the section in Let Me Teach You.

A lot of roofers want 1/2 down to start the job, why would they need that monies? They say they have to buy materials but if they have good credit they don’t have to pay for the materials for 30 to 90 days. And if you give them 1/2 down and they don’t do your job, how are you going to get your monies back? Most will take your half down then do the job, then collect the other half - and a month later the supplier will come knocking on your door wanting 1/2 of the money because the roofer never paid them. Don’t give 1/2 down ever. The job should be done and they should give you a lien release from the supplier before you pay them. But it is interesting to hear why roofing contractors need 1/2 down. I have done 10,000 roofs and never have I needed 1/2 down.

Ask your roofer if the copper that is embedded in the shingle will keep the moss from growing on the shingle like the manufactures claim. The answer is no because the moss grows on the fungus that grows on the shingle and we have not yet figured out how to control the growth of the fungus. They will tell you stain guard will stop the moss, there are several snake oil products that are up sales that don’t work, have never worked, so either the roofer doesn’t know this or he is lying to you. For free advice or instant quote call 253-221-7663