Roofing Company Checklist

There are a few questions you may have to ask yourself before choosing a contractor for your roofing needs.

Are they a local roofing company ?

I believe you should always support your own community and buy local. 

Are they insured for your protection ?

Were you provided with a certificate of personal injury & property damage liability insurance? Everyone says they are insured, many are not. make them prove it. Just like WSIB when you hire a contractor, in legal terms you become the principle. If a workplace accident or injury should occur and the company or individual roofing contractor you hired is uninsured, all liability rests upon you, as the principle. You are legally required to ensure all contractors you invite onto your property are insured. In fact, you can even have their insurance company name you on their policy and email you a copy. At Tops Roofing Company, we do this regularly, not only for municipal licensing but on larger commercial roofing projects as well. 

Does the roofing contracting company has WSIB ?

Again, you need to ask for this, it is your obligation to do so as the principle, and under Ontario law, it is required. As the principal, if an accident or injury occurs you can be liable under Ontario law for all unpaid premiums that the company you engaged has not paid. This could very well be in the 10s of thousands of dollars. At one time WSIB insured contractors had to request and carry around a valid clearance certificate. With the advent of technology, this can all be checked quite easily online by entering the company name or WSIB account number. [Read More]

Many will tell you they have private insurance, thus no need for WSIB. Don’t believe it, it’s a lie. WSIB is a must-have and is also the law in Ontario. 

Have you gone through the roofing reviews and references ?

Were you provided with names, addresses and telephone numbers of their past customers. At Tops Roofing we provide you thousands along with coordinating shingle type, colour and style so you can go have a look at our work for yourself. In our digital age, your roofing contractor must have is a Google My Business site where you can access the companies current information and read customer reviews about the roofing contractor and actually see what people are saying. 

Have you look into their identity ?

Who are they? Who owns the business? How many years in business? Do they have a website? A physical address? a telephone number landline? A Google My Business page? Email? Who are their suppliers? It’s always prudent to know who you’re dealing with as nothing is quite as frustrating or as costly when you discover after the fact, there are problems with your roof and you are unable to reach the roofing company or contractor that did the job. Trust me, it happens more often than you think. Generically, I just refer to all these roofing companies, and there are lots, as done Fly By Night Roofing! Which by the way also comes with the most popular warranty in the business. The Tail Light Warrant. 

Do i need to pay roofing deposits ?

Were you asked for a deposit? Small deposits to seal the deal, as it were, are ok although no longer legally required with any agreement or contract. Any roofing contractor that wants more than a couple hundred bucks, I’d be very wary of. At Tops Roofing we rarely if ever ask for a deposit and since 1987 have never lost a nickel because of it. Any reputable and established business purchases their materials on account (net 30) and will have a positive cashflow to cover wages and other associated costs and thus will wait to be paid upon completion and the satisfaction of his customer. Please walk away from cash deposits especially, as over they years Tops Roofing has completed a number of roofing projects for customers that gave at least one half of the roofing cost upfront as a cash deposit, and never saw the contractor again. For medium sized to large commercial projects we will either take 20 % down on mobilization ( all materials on site and work commencing) or have payment provisions or progress draws provided by way of CCDC ( Canadian Construction Documents Committee) contract documents.  

Does roofing company offer Warranties ?

What are the warranties and are the guaranteed in writing? 

Typically there are two warranties that every person must get. The first is a material warranty which is the manufacturers warrant against product defect, high wind damage etc and will contain precise manufactures installation requirements and specifications. The second warranty is the workmanship warranty. This warranty provides you coverage against defects in workmanship or installation deficiencies now and down the road. Workmanship warranties are pretty much a roofing industry standard of 10 years. Now heres the tricky part to warranties. They have limits. For example if the roofing company you hired installs your new roofing and half of the shingles blow away in the first windstorm, you probably got their tail light warranty and everything becomes redundant. However, you may still proceed with a claim to the manufacture under their high wind guarantee portion of their product warranty for your out of pocket repair costs. Of course if the roofing installation was done incorrectly and did not adhere to the manufactures specifications, your claim and all future claims will be denied making all your warranties not worth the paper they are written on. Caveat Emptor! At Tops Roofing we provide you warranties in writing and we always stand behind by both. Just ask some of our previous customers. 

Important Message To All!

These photos were taken a newer roof, less than two years old in Burlington Ontario after the customer noticed water stains on her ceilings and the contractor’s phone was no longer in service. The roofing contractor cheaped out and only changed the shingles, missing all the key points leaving old broken down vents and flashings in place.