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How to Choose Historic Roofing Contractors

Finding the right roofing contractor is always a challenge, but when you own a historic home this task comes with a unique set of challenges. Learn the important questions to ask as you seek the most qualified historic roofing contractor for your home or business.

What projects have you worked on in the past?

Depending on the specifics of your roof, you may be looking for a company that’s worked on the type of roof you have, or you may want a contractor that’s worked on various historical projects. The key is to find a contractor that has plenty of experience understanding the unique needs of historic roofing and what these jobs require. Larger, commercial roofing companies are more likely to apply a one-sized-fits-all technique to your roof. The reality is that your project is unique and it should be treated as such.

What techniques do you use?

You want to know exactly how your contractor will go about both planning and executing your project. There are many standard techniques out there that many of those with roofing experience will understand, but your historical roofing contractor will need to have experience with specialty techniques. Again, you don’t necessarily need someone with the exact experience in the technique you need, but you do need a contractor who will go out of their way to research your roof, your home, and the historic techniques needed for appropriate work.

What materials do you use?

Get detailed information on the materials a company uses. Contractors that have strong relationships with a specific company may not look for the best materials possible for your project; they may just look for the best products available from the company they work with. When historic roofing, it's important that the exact materials needed for the job are available to the contractors.

Are you licensed? Do you have the necessary insurance?

The licensing requirements for roofing contractors vary by state or province, but almost all areas require some kind of licensing. Do the research to find out what’s required and make sure the contractor you choose meets the requirements. You should also ask about their worker’s compensation and general liability insurance. It wasn’t long ago that companies with three or fewer employees weren’t required to have any form of worker’s compensation, but these days that loophole no longer exists. Make sure you’re working with historic roofing contractors that have at least the minimum amount of coverage.

Ask for references

It’s not enough for a historic roofing company to make claims, they must also be able to prove said claims. Ask them for the names of projects they’ve completed and ask for references. Check these references and find out if they completed the work on time, on budget, and as promised. Websites like Homestars exist for this very reason.

To speak with professionals who have experience on historic roofs like yours, contact Heather & Little today.

Preservation Consulting

And if you are looking for a second opinion on your project or have a particularly complex issue that needs a fresh eye, we’re here for that too. Tackling tricky challenges is our specialty and we welcome the opportunity to provide consulting advice, with the same exacting attention to detail we bring to all our commissions.
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