Let me tell you about a real lesson I learned-- the hard way. I once needed a specialist for a health-related problem. I had a recommendation from a friend for an absolute pro, the best in his field in the area, who also instructed at San Jose on the side. When I went to meet him, he explained that he was booked for a couple months, so it would be a while before he could even sit down to consult with me. My case wasn’t an emergency, but I didn’t feel like waiting. So, I was happy to accept being pawned off to his apprentice, who looked over his schedule carefully, telling me that he had a single hour available the following week, which I took. I later found out this was simply posturing, as not only was it his first day on the job, I was literally his first appointment. Because I didn’t have the patience to wait just a little while for the expert that I wanted, I ended up paying the same price to someone who literally had zero experience and didn’t know what he was doing.
The Biggest Threat to Your Home Might be ImpatienceLately, it has been a rather busy time for us. There’s a lot of work to be done in the San Francisco area, and myself and the majority of my other qualified peers are finding ourselves completely booked up. It’s hard to get an expert in the roofing industry on short notice, so what’s a homeowner in need to do? When you wait too long to schedule something it makes for a hard position to be in. You had plans, a budget, and a timetable, and it can all be thrown off because you didn’t have access to quality roofers when you wanted them. Be aware, though, this sense of urgency is exactly what a predator (unqualified roofer) can use to take advantage of you, knowing some will settle for sub-par work in exchange for their immediate availability. Don’t be that person . The results of non-qualified work could be disastrous for you.
Vetting Your ContractorsFor non-emergency maintenance or roof replacement, the answer is simple: schedule now, so we can help you as soon as possible. Occasionally, projects get canceled or rescheduled, and if we know about your needs in advance, there is the possibility we can get to you sooner! If that doesn’t happen, then at least you have booked the contractors you want, in advance, and you won’t have to worry about paying for the same job, twice. “But Carlos, what if my needs are urgent?” We hear you. Sometimes it can’t wait. Check with us, and maybe we can make something work. Often times, good roofers can do something to hold you over until a complete job can be done properly. But if you need to hire someone now, follow these tips to make sure you get the help you need, and not a big problem later:
- Make sure they are licensed. Not all states even require licensing for roofers, but in California, contractors are required to have a 4-year apprenticeship under their belt, pass a stringent exam, and be registered with the state.
- Make sure they are insured. Our state also requires contractors to be insured. If something happens on the job site, or a worker is injured, you, the homeowner don’t want to be held liable. Insurance protects the contractor, the materials, and you.
- Ask for referrals. Any contractor that has done some work and is worth their salt should be able to refer you to a body of customers, vendors, suppliers, and peers that can independently testify to the quality of their work.
- Ask for examples of their previous work. Nowadays, most roofers will be able to show you photos of their work. They are easy to take, and not only showcase their work, but can help protect them. With the internet and social media, it should be pretty simple for a contractor to show off his roofing experience. If they have nothing to show, you might want to consider why that is the case.
~Mr. Roofing San Francisco’s residential & commercial roofing experts