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About using a company you saw working in the neighborhood

Homeowners often get three bids for their roofing project. And in that mix of bids is often a company or guy who did their neigbor’s roof. People trust their neighbors. They want to believe their neighbor wouldn’t allow a bad company on their property, often to the point that the homeowner doesn’t even do their research. These companies may not have insurance. Or they have trucks with out-of-state plates (meaning they may be here today and gone tomorrow). Or they may not even know what they’re doing (which will reveal itself in leaks). They may have a myriad of issues that upon further inspection should erect red flags.

The reason I hear most often in the case of a homeowner who hired a neighbor’s roofer to do their project is “It looked like they did a good job.” My question is “How do you know?” Seriously. Unless you get up on the roof and inspect the work (and know what you’re looking for), you don’t really know how good a job that company did. They may have been nice to your neighbor and kept the ground clean, but you can’t tell how well a roof has been installed from 40 feet away.

So please: Research roofing companies. Ask for insurance paperwork from anyone you plan to hire. Go by their workplace. Do the minimal detective work to protect yourself from future headaches by going beyond “It looks like they did a good job.” It will be money well spent.