What to Ask Your Roofing Contractor

/ / Residential Roof, roof, Roofing Contractors, Uncategorized

When you realize that a new roof must be installed on your building, the process can seem quite daunting. There are so many decisions to be made, like choosing the type of roof system to install, the type of assembly that will provide the best performance for your facility, and the of course the all important choice of contractor who will be best for the job.

roofing contractor in an office meeting with computer and notebook

Our customers often say they’ve struggled to find the answers that are right for them, so we’ve put together a helpful checklist you can use as a guide for your project.

Warranty and Insurance

One thing you cannot overlook is the roofer’s insurance. If you’re not careful with this, an accident could leave you responsible and out of money.

Before working with any contractor, ask for a copy of their insurance certificate and get a letter from the insurance carrier. You will want to see coverage for workers’ compensation insurance and comprehensive liability insurance.

Also, ask about warranties covered by the roofing material’s manufacturer and any offered by the contractor.

Past Work

Next, let’s talk about past work. Reputable contractors should be glad to show you examples of their work.

Don’t be afraid to ask for a portfolio or to take a look at their work in person, or maybe even talk to past clients. If you can, try to go to a local site to see how their crew works together.

Ask yourself, do they work with a positive attitude? Are they making safety a priority, and do they demonstrate efficiency and professionalism?


It’s tempting to think that your roofing project will be completed on time, just because it should be. But any construction work can take longer than expected.

When working out the schedule with a roofing contractor, request a timeline with a firm start and finish date. Ask what you can do to prepare for the roofers to arrive.


Safety first! A professional roofing contractor knows OSHA’s requirements and will follow them to the letter.

If the company’s roofing policies are different than what OSHA mandates, you will need to know before they even start working.


If your goal is to make sustainability a priority, make sure you communicate this to your contractor. Then they will know to recycle, salvage and reuse resources that have been identified. The project should work around those goals.

Work Hours

Don’t want roofers working when you’re not there? Be sure to communicate to the contractor what days and hours are acceptable.

For example, a contractor may want to start early in the summer to avoid working in the hot temperatures, but that’s the week you’re going on vacation. The key here is communication!


You’ll probably expect the roofing company to keep things tidy. A written plan helps to ensure that any specific cleanliness concerns are addressed ahead of time.

Logistics – Parking, Loading, Unloading

Smaller parking lots can be a challenge, especially if they are located on a metropolitan street. Keep in mind that the roofer will need access with large equipment.

Be sure to ask about any access issues when discussing the project with your contractor.


Are you the type that will expect frequent updates? You could have different expectations of communication than the contractor.

If you expect daily reports on progress, make sure you tell your contractor. It’s a good idea to agree on a communication plan.

Facility Functions

Every company has different function needs while construction is being completed. Is your company going to continue operating while the work is being done?

For example, if air intakes need to be temporarily closed, you will need to consider this when talking with your contractor.

Facility Rules

Contractors should not be exempt from your business’ rules!

If you enforce a non-smoking policy at your company, it is important that your contractor knows and enforces this policy, too. During the planning process, talk about any rules that workers will need to follow.

Type of Roofing

You’ll be surprised to know that there is a wide variety of roofing materials that will work for your tastes, needs and budget.

Different types of roofing materials are available such as:

  • metal
  • slate
  • asphalt shingles
  • tile
  • BUR
  • custom wall panels
  • cold applied Modified Bitumen.

Custom Order Process

Need a custom order? A reputable contractor will work with you to make your vision come to life. If you are not able to find a certain material, some companies will create a custom order for you. This is definitely something to ask if your contractor can handle.

These are the basic things you should consider when hiring a roof contractor. At JOI, it is our goal to make sure you are completely satisfied with the roofing process.

We have an excellent order system that will handle nearly any custom order, and we will be glad to work with you to create your vision. We take all concerns into consideration when working with you and will be glad to handle your next roofing project. Contact us today!