Choosing the Right Roofing Contractor

By The Old House Web

Mark Clement, practical contractor for The Old House Web and host of MyFixItUpLife radio show, warns consumers that under even the best conditions, a roofing project at the tear-off stage is a rough and tumble job. That means you must select a roofing contractor who raises the right concerns and solutions for the delivery of materials and disposal of the torn-off roof.

Before engaging any contractor, ask about their experience with old houses. If they're not concerned about working neatly from the get go, keep evaluating prospective contractors. See if your prospect takes the lead in discussing the work plan. Will they lay out tarps, strategize parking of the delivery truck, and stage the delivery?

A Good Contractor Addresses Your Home's Challenges

In the case of the American Foursquare in the video, the shotgun lot poses challenges. There are AC units that can't handle a plane of shingles being dropped on them. Neighbors don't want torn-off shingles, nails, or tarpaper in their yards. It has to be determined where to park a truck and load weighing up to 50,000 pounds. Cut-up landscaping, retaining walls, expensive paver driveways, septic line systems, and power lines all can restrict delivery. If the contractor doesn't address delivery details and include delivery in the budget, keep looking.

Ventilation is another issue. If your roofing contractor doesn't offer a plan for a soffit/ridge-vent system, interview other prospects. For the home in the video, Clement chose the solar attic fan from Sunrise Solar, a product that uses no electricity, is wind resistant, and can afford up to 30 percent in cooling savings.

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