If your roof needs repairs it is important that you work with a licensed contractor. While you may be able to complete minor repairs on your own, for any repairs that you do not feel comfortable with you should contact a licensed contractor and check that their license is current before you accept a bid from them and begin the project. While an unlicensed contractor may submit a lower bid for a project, there are several ways that a license can give you a better sense of security during your project.
Licensed Contractors Will Be Able to Pull the Proper Permits
One of the first signs that a contractor is probably not licensed is if they ask you to secure the building permits for them to complete your roofing job. This is because in many areas, only the owner of a home or a licensed contractor can apply for the roofing permits. A licensed contractor will be able to complete the complicated process of applying for the proper permits, and they will also be able to ensure that your new roof passes any required inspections.
Licensed Contractors Are Required to Offer Workers Compensation to Their Employees
In most states, similar to Texas, a contractor has to supply proof of workers compensation in order to obtain and renew their license. This means that if an employee or subcontractor is injured while working on your roof, your roofing contractor's insurance will cover the cost of their workers compensation claim. If your contractor does not have adequate workers compensation insurance, their workers may choose to sue you for the cost of their medical bills.
Licensed Contractors Have Insurance to Cover the Cost of Damage to Your Home During Repair
Besides workers compensation insurance, licensed roofing contractors are required to have general liability insurance. This will cover the cost of damages to your home during the repairs. For example, if a tool falls and creates a hole in your attic, your contractor's insurance should cover the cost of fixing that damage (or the contractor may fix the damage on their own without contacting their insurance company). If your contractor does not have adequate insurance, you will have to cover the cost of repairs on your own or through your homeowner's insurance.
Licensed Contractors Are Less Likely to Conduct Roofing Scams
Unfortunately, there are several roofing scams that are common in the United States. These scams usually involve taking a down payment and then not completing work, fabricating extra damage to a roof that does not need repairs, or targeting areas where there was recent storm damage to sell low-quality roofs. Often, the contractors who conduct these scams are unlicensed. Checking your contractor's license either online or by calling your state licensing board ensures that the contractor is qualified to complete the work necessary to your home. A valid license number also helps you look up complaints against the contractor.
Licensed Contractors Have Proven That Their Work Meets Basic Safety and Quality Codes
Besides having the required insurance, most states also require contractors to prove basic competency in roofing skills and a general knowledge of safety standards in order to obtain or renew their license. Although a license does not always guarantee that the contractor will complete high-quality work, it does mean that they have the necessary skills to do so. An unlicensed contractor may or may not have the experience necessary to diagnose and repair your roof problems.
Although an unlicensed roofing contractor may offer you a good price, it is important that you talk to your insurance company first and then find a licensed contractor to complete necessary repairs on your roof.
For more information about roofing contractors, contact a company like Lifetime Exteriors.