The Rules of Roofing

When it comes to building a house, the roof also matters. You should know the facts revolving around the subject. For instance you should not get a new roof when the current one is still in good shape. You should also do some exploring and know the options that are available to you.


Don’t replace your roof if it doesn’t really need replacement. If you can give your roof two or three more years of life with simple repairs, you may as well delay the expense. Then again, if you think repairs won’t solve the problem and may drop you back into the drip-drip syndrome next winter, don’t postpone the inevitable. An asphalt-fiberglass roof is over the hill when the shingles are brittle and worn on the surface.

Do explore your options. Don’t just settle for the easiest or most obvious choices of materials. Though conventional asphalt/fiberglass (“composition”) roofing is by far the most commonly used material, other options are available, including tile, concrete-masonry, and metal roofing.

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If your roof needs replacement or you are building a new house then you will need a contractor. Do ensure that you get one who has a solid reputation in the business. If there are any shingles on the roof then you better start looking for a roofing contractor.

  1. Shingle manufacturers and roofing contractors have earned their reputations – research before making your roofing decision. Check with BBB (Better Business Bureau), WSIB (Workplace Safety & Insurance Board), and ask for references.
  2. Existing shingles and all flashings should ALWAYS be replaced with new roofing.
  3. Roofing sub-contractors are not working for you, they are piece workers. A dependable roofing company has their own trained and hourly-paid employees who will typically provide better workmanship than a piece worker.
  4. Always use Ice Shield on eaves, valleys, and low slope areas to prevent ice build-up from damaging your roof.

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If you have consulted several contractors and want to make a decision then you should ensure you make a good one. Your decision should not be based on how affordable a contractor is. Ask plenty of questions and in case you come to an agreement then put it all down on paper.

Don’t let cost be your only consideration

The best roofers are usually so in demand that they don’t have to consider price competition. The incentive to hire this roofer, besides quality work, may be an agreement to work with you down the road if you experience any problems with your roof. If you drive too hard a bargain with your roofer, you may be sacrificing quality of workmanship or materials as well.

Don’t be afraid to ask questions

A roofer who’s worth his shingles will take the time to answer your questions up front. If he or she is evasive, rushed, or impatient, these may be warning signs to pay attention to.

Do get it in writing

Never hire a roofer without a signed contract. The contract should be as detailed as possible, and should be signed by both the roofer and the homeowner(s). The contract should cover areas such as:

Time frame for completion of work

Work schedule, including working hours and site clean up

Specific products to be used, costs, and payment method

Legal issues regarding permits and contract

Take the time to find the right roofer, and take comfort in having a solid roof over your head.

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