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4 Things to Know Before Choosing a Roof Estimate (Checklist Included)

November 17th, 2023 | 4 min read

By Jeffrey Linta

When it comes to comparing roof estimates, you may be feeling a bit confused and overwhelmed. 

Most people don’t know where to start when it comes to comparing roof estimates. As a local contractor in the Myrtle Beach area for 38+ years, we don’t view an uninformed customer as a benefit. 

You should be in the know from beginning to end.

You don’t have to be a roofing expert to ensure that you’re receiving a fair roofing estimate. This article will give you information that your roofing company should tell you. Once you know what to look for, you can use our free Roof Estimate Checklist to compare estimates and make sure they include all the necessary details of a high-quality roofing job.

Upon finishing this article, you will be informed about the key topics your roofer should address, both during face-to-face discussions and in your estimate. This allows you to make sure your roofer is maintaining transparency with you as they get started on your roofing project, helping you decide which roof estimate is right for you.

The 4 Things You Should Know Before Choosing a Roofing Estimate:

  1. The warranties on your estimate
  2. The scope of work
  3. Your obligations
  4. What is excluded from your original estimate

We have also included a checklist for you to fill out when comparing estimates. This will help you determine which estimate is right for you! 

So, how do you compare roofing estimates?

 

A roofing project comes with both a manufacturer’s warranty and a workmanship warranty. Your roofer should explain the details of your warranties during the estimate.

A manufacturer’s warranty: Coverage for the cost of any material defects

A workmanship warranty: Coverage provided by your roofing contractor for labor or install issues

A wind warranty: Coverage for wind damage

When it comes to warranties, the best warranties can only be provided by contractors that have top standing with shingle manufacturers. 

For example, Master Elite contractors are GAF’s highest-rated contractors. Master elite contractors are certified by GAF to offer advanced warranties that other contractors are not able to offer. Only 3% of roofing contractors are Master Elite.

This means that the manufacturer backs the roofing contractor’s work and will offer a warranty on both the materials (up to 50 years) and the workmanship (up to 25 years). Master Elite contractors can offer elite warranties including Silver Pledge and Golden Pledge warranties. 

 

The scope of work describes the work that your estimate will include. Your roofer should explain all the details of their plan for your roof.

Your Contractor Should Let You Know if:

  • They are replacing your pipe boots
  • They will need to perform additional work (including things like dormers work or installing new flashing)
  • They use a boom truck to place shingles onto your roof
  • There will be a supervisor
  • If there will be an inspection after the work is completed

The roofing materials you choose can increase its lifespan. Your estimate will reflect a price according to whatever materials you have chosen for your roof. There are different types of roofing materials for you to consider, but it is important to know the manufacturer your roofer uses.

You Want to Make Sure You are Clear On:

  • The manufacturer of the materials that will be used
  • The type of shingles being used (3-tab, architectural, or designer)
  • The color of the shingles that will be used
  • The type of underlayment (felt, self-adhered, or synthetic)
  • The accessories that will be installed (such as cap shingle, ridge vent, pipe boots, etc.)

While materials are important, how these materials are installed will truly determine the lifespan of your roof. If you choose high-quality shingles but they are not applied well, they may not last as long as you were led to believe.

Your roofer should be as specific and clear as possible when they discuss the scope of work with you. Additionally, your roofer should let you know what you are responsible for before your roofing project begins.

Your roofing contractor should tell you what you are responsible for ahead of time. In our contract, we call them ‘owner’s obligations.’

Your Obligations May Include:

  • Removing vehicles from the driveway and moving items away from the home so nothing is damaged while the original roof is torn off. 
  • Inspecting your attic space to make sure A/C lines are not within six inches of the roof deck so nothing is damaged while the original roof is torn off.
  • Removing or protecting all items of value from the attic space
  • Removing or protecting items below skylights
  • Removing any loosely hung items in the home
  • Mowing your lawn
  • Taking responsibility and expense for loss of signal if the roofer has to remove satellite dishes

Every roofing contractor you speak with should offer this information. Your roofer is responsible for informing you of your obligations. You should not feel confused about your responsibilities before the start of your roofing project. 

Not only that, but your roofer should let you know of anything that is excluded from your estimate.

The exclusions section of your estimate should include more detailed information about what is not reflected in your estimate.

Your roofing contractor should let you know that the cost can change if they discover underlying issues with your roof. For example, the cost will increase if your contractor discovers that your roof has multiple layers of shingles or rot in the roof decking. 

Exclusions may include:

  • The cost of trimming out new skylights
  • The cost of removing and re-installing gutter covers
  • The cost of replacing all existing flashing
  • The cost of electrical connections for attic fans
  • The cost of loading the roof by any method other than a boom truck
  • The cost of removing additional layers of shingling

No one likes surprises on a renovation project of this magnitude. When you are investing money into a roof, you want to make sure your roofer is transparent with you. When a roofer is open about all the moving factors that go into the price of your roof, you can trust them to keep you well informed from beginning to end. 

This helps you know what they’re doing and what they’re not doing at your home. 

Choosing the right estimate for your roofing project can be tough, confusing, and stressful. It’s a significant financial decision, and you want to be sure you’re making the best choice.

Above all else, it is important to know that your roofer is trustworthy and reliable. A reputable roofing company will be open about the topics discussed in this article, making them a trustworthy company to hire for your roofing project. You should compare your roofing contractors in addition to the estimates they provide.

Now that you know what your roofer should inform you of, you can compare each estimate using the Ultimate Roofing Estimate Checklist.

This checklist is designed to protect you from moving forward with contractors who may not be as transparent as possible with you, helping you make the most of your investment.

As a homeowner, your main concern is protecting your home with a top-notch roof. It’s an investment you shouldn’t compromise on for a lower price.

At Linta Roofing we believe that to be clear is to be kind. We encourage you to use this guide and checklist to ensure satisfaction with your new roof.

Jeffrey Linta

Jeffrey Linta is a 3rd generation roofer who grew up working in his family's roofing business (Linta Roofing, Inc.). He got his start tearing off roofs during the summer while attending North Myrtle Beach High School. Now running one of the most successful roofing businesses in the Grand Strand area, Jeffrey has lived and breathed roofing for his entire working career. Some of his accolades include GAF Master Elite Contractor, SC Safehome certified contractor, Group 5 SC Licensed Commercial Contractor, and GAF Master Commercial roofing contractor. Under his leadership, Linta Roofing, Inc. has served thousands of homeowners and business owners in the Grand Strand area. Linta Roofing achieved awards like the Sun News’s “Best of the Beach” and A+ Rating with the Better Business Bureau all while receiving hundreds of 5-star reviews year after year. Jeffrey is a Grand Strand born and raised local. When he is not running Linta Roofing, he spends time fishing with his wife Erica and walking the beach with his dog Dixie.