If you want to replace or repair a damaged roof, you’ll most likely have to hire a roofing contractor. But, unfortunately, not all contractors are what they seem. Although most prioritize hard work and customer satisfaction above all else, a few are only after your hard-earned cash.
So, how do you avoid getting scammed? Well, performing a background check before hiring any roofing contractor would be a good start. Here’s how you can perform a background check on any potential contractor before you hire them.
Visit the Contractor’s Website
For basic information about contractors, you don’t have to look far. Simply visit their websites. You’ll discover the services they offer, the brands they work with, and even the years they’ve been in service.
And since all reputable contractors have an online presence, walk away from those without a website. Obviously, they’re not what they claim to be, or they might have something to hide.
Visit Trade Association and Brand Websites
As a general rule, reputable contractors work with leading brands and join well-known trade associations. Because fly-by-night contractors know this, they make similar claims to lure unsuspecting clients. As a result, you must verify these claims, which is a simple thing to do.
For starters, trade associations always list their members in a directory. Likewise, manufacturers’ websites allow you verify certified contractors. So, visit both, or directly contact the association or manufacturer for more information.
Ask Contractors for Licenses and Insurance
Despite being certified by a leading brand and being a member of a trade association, trustworthy contractors should also own a current operating license. To confirm that they do, ask to see a copy of the license, or visit a regulator’s website for a list of licensed contractors. Also, ask the contractor for an insurance certificate, ensuring that it covers workers’ compensation and general liability.
Visit the Better Business Bureau
To know how a contractor resolves customer complaints, visit the Better Business Bureau (BBB) website. The website not only lists and rates accredited contractors but also includes customer complaints, thus giving you a good idea of how a contractor handles clients. However, not having a BBB accreditation doesn’t reflect poorly on a contractor. It could simply mean that the company didn’t have their site evaluated.
Check Free Public Record Registries
After the BBB website, you could go on a site like Freerecordsregistry.com or any free public records registry to do a background check on any contractor. Here, you’ll find all court and public records pertaining to the contractor, including judgments and bankruptcy files. With this information, you’ll know which contractors to work with or to avoid.
Read Customer Reviews
After doing all the above, ask for feedback from a contractor’s past clients. Speak to relatives, friends, and neighbors who’ve worked with the contractor about the company’s service delivery. Were they satisfied with their repaired or replaced roofs? And if they had any complaints, were they resolved? Next, read customer reviews on Customer Lobby, Angie’s List, and other similar websites.
Choosing the right contractor for a roofing job is essential. Make sure that you follow the simple tips in this article, so you can get to get a clearer picture of who you’ll be hiring.