When you need to replace your roof, you’ll want to know as much as possible about the process. You need to weigh your options for roofing materials, their cost, and learn as much as you can about the companies that will be doing the work. In particular, your goal should be to find the best work for the best value.
Conventional wisdom (not to mention your insurance company) states that you should get three estimates and choose the median. Why? Supposedly, a drastically lower estimate may indicate cost-cutting measures that could result in shoddy workmanship, while the highest estimate could wind up costing you a pretty penny for average durability.
Meanwhile, if you’re replacing your roof due to an insurance claim, your insurance company may be stressing that you obtain at least three estimates. However, the three-estimate rule is not a hard-and-fast requirement for insurance claims, nor is it a necessity for your own decision-making process.
How Many Estimates Do You Need?
The thought process behind requesting estimates is solid – replacing a roof is a major undertaking that costs you a good deal of money and stands to make a lasting effect on your home’s weatherproofing, durability, and resale value for years to come. Of course, you want as much information as possible so you can feel comfortable proceeding. You also want to make sure the company you choose provides high-quality materials and high-quality installation – the best way to make that determination is to compare them to others that offer the same service.
However, do you really need three estimates? Not really. In this case, the “right” number of estimates depends completely on you – get as many, or as few, estimates as you need in order to feel comfortable with the company you choose and their pricing.
Insurance companies also cannot require you to get a certain number of estimates. All roofing companies receive payment following a third-party system designed to set industry standard prices. Your insurance company will pay your area’s best roofer the exact same amount as it pays the worst roofer. Gather as many estimates as you feel comfortable with and choose the best company, just as you would if you were footing the bill on your own.
What Should You Look for?
How do you go about choosing the best company? Aside from affordability, ask these questions while choosing a roofer:
- Have you performed work in the area? Ask for references and addresses. There’s no better way to get a feel for a company’s customer service and workmanship than by speaking with former customers.
- How experienced is your crew? It’s a good sign if your roofing company has been in business for decades and has great reviews. However, make sure to ask about the experience level of the particular crew that will be performing your work; a long-lasting company can easily hire a crop of newbies that may not have any more experience than you do.
- How can I reach out during the process? Asking this question, in particular, gauges the company’s customer service. Their willingness to answer questions, guide you through the process, and remain available speaks to how smoothly the process will go on install day.
Finding the right company to install your roof at the right price is essential. However, there’s no set number of estimates you must consider in order to arrive at the right company.