While there are no guarantees in life; a roof’s life should come with some guarantees! A roof over your head does more than keep the occupants of the house safe and protected from the elements, it provides security and peace of mind. However, roofs aren’t infallible and their lifespan isn’t infinite. Homeowners report that roofing repair and/or replacements are one of the most daunting projects they will ever take on due to the cost and complexity. One of the hardest parts of the process is often choosing a skilled, reliable, and trustworthy contractor. Some factors to consider when choosing a contractor:
- How much is this going to cost you? (Consider hidden costs too!)
- How do you know who to trust?
- What’s legitimate or a scam?
- How can you ensure that you, as a homeowner, are protected?
- Should you buy warranties?
- Is extra insurance needed?
- What guarantees are offered?
The Informed Homeowner Has Power
In response to the above questions, Indy Roof Company has you covered! Part of our company ethos is educating consumers and demystifying the process. We want consumers to feel well-informed and confident in the choices they make. We also want to equip folks with tools to spot potential scams, less-than-reputable roofers, and/or uninsured contractors that could end up costing homeowners more in the long run. We also educate consumers on how best to work with insurance companies and get the most out of their claims. It’s possible to make your dollar go further without cutting corners!
What Comes After Claim Approval?
Once the homeowner has successfully navigated the insurance claims process, it is important to understand the scope of the insurance claim payout. There are two different types of payments:
- Replacement Cost Value (RCV)
- Actual Cash Value (ACV)
RCV means that the insurance company pays to replace everything listed on the contractor’s estimate. ACV means that the insurance company pays the appraised value of the roof depending on current values. Most insurance policies use RCV, but if you have an older roof, it is possible that your insurance policy is ACV.
The type of payment should be clearly identified on the insurance scope. In addition, it should be discussed with your contractor so that everyone is on the same page. If your insurance policy only offers ACV, there are ways to avoid paying extra out of pocket costs beyond the deductible. For instance, if you have an ACV insurance scope that includes multiple trades (e.g., roof, gutters, siding, and paint), it is perfectly allowable to use ACV funds from gutters, siding and/or paint to cover the full RCV of the roof without paying additional money out of pocket. Reputable companies can help walk consumers through that process and provide support with navigating the insurance claims process.
Considering Price Versus Quality
With a higher ratio of fly-by-night roofing contractors that are less than reputable compared to honest and reputable companies like Indy Roof Company, the homeowner has plenty of options to choose from when it comes to roofing companies. The key thing to remember is that the lowest price usually doesn’t equal the highest quality. You get what you pay for. Sometimes low prices are an indication that corners are being cut somewhere at the expense of the homeowner. If everything goes well with the roofing job, the homeowner could end up with a bargain. However, if the contractor is not insured and becomes injured on the job, they may end up suing the homeowner for medical expenses. If workmanship or product quality is not guaranteed, that could steal even more valuable dollars out of a homeowner’s pocket in the long run. Then very quickly, that “great deal” becomes more than the homeowner bargained for.
Also, it should be considered how the work is to be performed including how surrounding areas are affected by the work being done. With any roofing job, there are things being tossed from high up to the ground below. Things need to be brought up from the ground below to the roof high up above. There are things in between that need to be protected from damage and a reputable roofing contractor should have a plan to mitigate impact, avoid damage, and assume responsibility for any damage caused.
For instance, Indy Roof Company uses a breathable netting system called a “Catch-All” to protect sensitive areas of the home such as windows, garage doors, and vegetation around the house. We also use a Equpiter (driveable dumpster) to access hard-to-reach areas in order to safely dispose of shingles without causing damage or impacting vegetation below. In contrast, cheaper contractors may use tarps thrown on the ground that can kill vegetation. Or they may throw shingles directly onto the yard below which is the equivalent of thousands of pounds of materials hitting the ground with the high potential to damage the landscaping. Not to mention additional damage that may occur to windows, siding, paint, other parts of the house, yard structure, and/or vehicles.
Are you sure those cheap contractors are worth the potential added cost of repairing or replacing any damages they may cause? Beware! Homeowners are often on the hook for those additional costs!
Before Signing that Contract
Contracts are legally binding documents. While it may be tempting to skip over the fine print and the legalese, it is important to read all information carefully and ask questions for clarification where needed. Homeowners should especially pay attention to:
- Scope of Work
- Warranties on Materials and Workmanship
- Contractor Responsibility for Damages
Homeowners do not want roof repairs that take forever to complete. Nor should the roof repair cause damage that wasn’t there before work began! Contractors should have measures in place to ensure work is completed in a satisfactory and timely manner with care taken to minimize their impact on the property during their work.
Contractor Insurance Protects Everyone
At a minimum, all contractors should have general liability and workers’ compensation. These protect both contractors and homeowners. As a consumer, you have the right to request copies of insurance policies. There are minimum guarantees that all contractors should offer. Contractors should furnish proof of all warranties and insurance information without hesitation. In the event they don’t, consumers have the right to request copies. Consider it a red flag if contractors are evasive or avoid sharing their company information even when requested.
Warranties Almost Rhyme with Guarantees
As mentioned above, warranties are another layer of protection. High-quality contractors should offer two warranties:
- Manufacturer Warranty
- Quality/Satisfaction Warranty
Manufacturer warranties guarantee roofing products are free of defect and provide a minimum timespan without needing repairs. These warranties should come at no cost to consumers. The quality/satisfaction warranty ensures that the consumer is satisfied with the contractor’s work and the quality of the work performed. There may be extended warranty options available at an additional cost that increases the timespan. It is up to the consumer if they wish to add on extended warranties or not.
Time to Raise the Roof
Once the insurance claims process has concluded, the contractor’s been located, and the terms of the contract agreed to and signed, it’s time to schedule work! We hope you have selected Indy Roof Company as your contractor of choice! With our A+ BBB rating, hundreds of 5-star Google reviews with a 4.9 Google rating, and a robust referral program driven by over a thousand satisfied customers, we are confident that Indy Roof Company is the best choice for Indianapolis’ roofing needs. However, don’t just take our word for it! Check out our Google and Facebook reviews and our video testimonials.
Customer satisfaction is important to us because Indianapolis is the community we live and work in. Beyond the roofing services we provide, our employees are involved in our community and Indy Roof Company is committed to giving back to both the community and our consumers. It’s our company’s mission to educate consumers about the industry, our services, and how to navigate roofing repair and replacement services. An educated consumer is a consumer well-versed to confidently choose the best roofing company to serve all their roofing needs! A well-educated customer can also see why we’re the #1 roofing company in Indianapolis!