what to ask Roofing guy/company

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leza wang wrote:

Leza,
If the way that contractors typically work in Canada is similar to how they do things in the U.S.A., the answer to your questions is easy.
Just have a few more roofing companies come out and give you a WRITTEN quote. Roofing companies do this all the time, so they know what they should be spelling out in detail on the quote etc. They'll write down what materials they will be using, and they'll include a bunch of things and terms like "ice shield", "drip edge", "valleys" (I don't think you have any of these), "ridge vent", "flashing", etc. etc.
A general or verbal price for the job is not what you want for any roofing job -- it is meaningless and way too vague. Just get complete written quotes -- that's what you need -- not a verbal price.
When you have a few different roofing companies come out and give you written quotes, most of them will explain what each item means and they will explain in detail what they plan on doing and why each part is important. That's how you will learn what all of the terms mean.
There is also another current thread here on this newsgroup with the subject: "Roof Estimate Help" posted by Saif Raza. If you read that, you will learn a lot about all of the roofing terms, what to look for, etc.
And, as Micky or someone else wrote, ask them what they think is leaking and what the options are for fixing the problem. Some will say that you can either fix the leaks now or that you definitely need a new roof now. If they are honest (many of them are), they will tell you the truth and they will explain why each option is or is not the best choice.
You posted a general front view whole house photo of your house a while back. I think it was the photo that showed markings where you were thinking of building a fence. If you want, I can post that same photo again for you here so others can get an idea of the type of roof you have now etc. I mention this because you said you are having some issues with uploading photos these days. Or, if you can do more photos and upload them, a shot or two of the roof from the front and the back would be good.
One final thing -- about whether the roofers will look in the attic etc. -- I have found that roofers generally do not have any interest in doing that. They just go up on the roof, walk the roof, and look at it, and they know what it needs from there. I have had a number of roofs done on different rental properties in the past 4 to 6 years, and I really have to twist the roofers arms to get them to look at the roof from underneath -- even with properties that have an open ceiling walk-up attic space. Apparently, unless they are just trying to fix a leak problem, looking at the roof from underneath doesn't really help them in doing the written quote.
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On Friday, July 12, 2013 1:30:14 PM UTC-4, TomR wrote:

+1 to going in the attic. I had 3 quotes done recently, none went in the attic. One didn't even go on the roof. Going in the attic is a pain and it doesn't add much. The standard quote had $50 or whatever per sheet of sheathing, as needed.
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snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

Hi, Isn't that why removing old shingle is good idea?
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TomR wrote:

Hi, Oh, my, every any job needs written quote not only roofing job. the more detailed the better. I was lucky when I was having houses built fro my family I had an old German fellow who I could do anything with shake of our hands. He is retired now soon after building my all season cabin.
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If you don't know much about roofing (like me!) try to get quotes as many c ontractors as you can. You'll see the ones who are really professional give you a more detailed quote (in writing). You should take everything down in writing - the materials used, exactly what they are going down, the time i t will take and the warranties they provide. For instance, when Champion Wi ndow did my roofing they gave us an upfront coverage on the entire roofing system for 50 years. They have certified installers, too. Check out their s ervices on the BBB or something. You should also ask for references and cal l them up to see if they had a good experience with the contractor.
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If you don't know much about roofing (like me!) try to get quotes as many c ontractors as you can. You'll see the ones who are really professional give you a more detailed quote (in writing). You should take everything down in writing - the materials used, exactly what they are going down, the time i t will take and the warranties they provide. For instance, when Champion Wi ndow did my roofing they gave us an upfront coverage on the entire roofing system for 50 years. They have certified installers, too. Check out their s ervices on the BBB or something. You should also ask for references and cal l them up to see if they had a good experience with the contractor. Refer: http://www.championwindow.com/dallas/products/roofing.aspx
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