Do I need a new roof?
As with many new Grand Rapids roofing calls, all it takes is a leak or severe damage to recognize you may have a problem. Indoors, look for cracked paint, discolored plasterboard, and peeling wallpaper as signs of damaged roof areas. Since you may not know what to look for on the roof, schedule periodic inspections, preferably once a year. These checks can uncover cracked, warped, or missing shingles, loose seams, deteriorating flashing, excessive surface granules accumulating in the gutters or downspouts, and other visible signs of roof problems. Catching problems early will eliminate unnecessary costs later.
My roof leaks. Do I need to have it totally replaced?
Not necessarily. Leaking can result because some flashing has come loose, or because a section of the roof has been damaged. A roof failure, however, is irreversible. A roof failure can come from an improper installation, poor choice of materials, installation of a roof system inappropriate to the building, or simply wearing out.
What will a new roof cost?
The price of a new roof varies widely, depending on the material selected, the contractor doing the work, the home itself, local labor rates, time of year, and more. To get a good idea of the cost for your Grand Rapids roofing project, get two or three estimates from reputable contractors in your area. Keep in mind that price is only one factor, and it must be balanced against the quality of the materials and, most importantly, workmanship.
How long will it take for you to complete work on my roof?
For residential roofs, it typically takes one or two days. If your roof is very large or steep, or if substantial repairs are required, it could take longer. The weather can also delay the process, but we will always ensure the roof is watertight, beginning to end.
The estimates I received are very different in price. Why not just go with the lowest bid?
Most often, estimates may appear to be offering the same or similar services, but our experience shows most contracts are not created equal. A low price can signal discrepancies and shortcomings in the reliability of the contractor. In addition to the actual materials, some of the differences to look for when comparing Grand Rapids roofing contracts and contractors are the number of years the company has been in business, the experience of the actual crew, and validity of liability and workers’ compensation insurance.
In the end, you want to pick a roofing contractor who has a history of satisfied customers and is committed to installing your roof according to the manufacturer’s specification.
Do you clean-up around our home once you’ve finished?
After your new roof has been installed, we’ll do our very best to get your property back into tip-top shape. During the roofing process, literally thousands of pounds of material and debris are handled, so our teams will rake and sweep all debris from the roof and around the house (sidewalks, driveways, etc.). Then, we’ll use nail magnets to find and pick up nails. We will perform a final inspection of your new roof and your grounds to assure your home is left the way we would want to find ours.
Do you carry worker’s compensation insurance or liability insurance?
Above Roofing has insurance protection for both workers’ compensation and general liability coverage. You or your company will never be responsible for any of these Grand Rapids roofing expenses. We will provide certificates of insurance upon request.
How can I find a contractor that I can trust?
Look for a roofing contractor who fits the following criteria:
- Has a proven track record. (Check references, talk to your local building department, and look at work they’ve done in your area)
- Is stable. (How long have they been in business? Who owns the company?)
- Provides expertise. (Are installers experienced? Does the contractor provide training and oversight of work? Has the contractor achieved certifications from manufacturers?)
- Provides a reasonable contract. (Don’t sign something you don’t understand. If you’re being pressured to sign, that’s a bad thing.)
Can I do the work myself?
Short answer: probably not. Professional roofing contractors are trained to safely and efficiently repair or replace a roof. Also, shingles and other roofing materials only qualify for the manufacturer’s warranty if they’re installed correctly. Beginners can harm a roof with improper roofing techniques or severely injure themselves by falling off or even through a roof in need of repair or replacement.
However, if you must inspect the roof yourself, use a firmly braced or tied-off ladder equipped with rubber safety feet. Wear rubber-soled shoes and stay on the ladder (and off the roof) if possible.
How long can I expect my roof to last?
The condition and lifespan of your roof will depend on the type of roof you have, the effects of your local environment, and the maintenance the roof has received. According to the American Society of Home Inspectors, asphalt shingles last 15–20 years. Roofing product manufacturers offer a variety of warranties on their products. Take a close look at those warranties to see what responsibilities and financial obligations they will assume if their products fail to reach their expected lifetimes.
Can you just cover-over my existing shingles instead of tearing them off?
Sometimes we can, depending on your roof and what’s up there. Most re-roofs should be evaluated on a case by case basis. Tearing off existing materials, inspecting the decking (as well as the general integrity of your roof structure) and then installing your new roof will guarantee optimum long-term performance.
Are you an experienced roofing contractor?
Above Roofing has completed thousands of Grand Rapids roofing projects and we are happy to provide you with a list of references that will confirm that we do our work as promised. We stand by our work and will provide knowledgeable, honest answers to your questions.