HOW DO I EVALUATE BIDS FROM CONTRACTORS?
Most people will buy 1 or 2 roofs in their lives and are not experts at evaluating roofing bids or contracts. The following are the items to review and understand in the bids you receive from your potential contractor. These bids will also become the signed contractual agreement between you and your contractor, so you should clearly understand them.
What is the price to replace the roof?
What are the payment terms for the roof replacement project? How much has to be put down to start the project? Are there intermediate progress payments? How much are these progress payments? What is the “holdback”? You may want to consider a holdback at the end of the project, holding back the final payment (probably in the 10% range) until all project work is successfully completed and approved by you.
What is the scope of work, services and installation in the bid, including:
- Roofing materials - amount, type, and manufacturer
- Metal work around roof
- Gutter work
- Underlayment layer under the roof
- Heat tape to melt ice and snow
- Snow guards
- Roof tear off and disposal
- Other work – you might ask the roofer if there is other work you are expecting them to do. If there is work you expect that is not in the written bid, the costs will probably go up for the roofer to perform this work.
What are the start and completion dates for your project? Will the crews be working every day or not? What days will they be working? You will want to make sure this schedule is a firm commitment and meets your personal schedule.
Who is the crew and project manager that will be performing the work? Are they employees of the contractor or is the contractor subcontracting the work to another company? How many people will be working on the project?
You should receive a warranty from the roof contractor and a material warranty from the manufacturer of the roof material. The warranty should include: contractor and manufacturer legal names, duration, coverage (labor, parts, materials), and any warranty exceptions. It should also include transferability to future homeowners that you may sell the house to
The roofing contractor should have insurance coverage for any workplace injuries or accidents so you have no liability for anyone that gets hurt on your roof replacement project