A roofer installing shingles on a residential home.

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Choosing a Roofing Contractor


Ask the contractors for any local referrals. This limits the chance for any issues or scams as a contractor who has worked in the community is more reliable.

BBB Ratings

Look up the contractor on Better Business Bureau (BBB). Stay away from a roofer who isn’t on this site. This ensures you get a certified worker.


Research to see if the contractor can offer a manufacturer warranty. If there are any workmanship or product flaws, you want to be covered.

Licensed & Insured

Ensure the contractor has the proper certifications and insurance for the state you live in. Ask for worker’s compensation and liability insurance too.

Ask Questions

Ask about the length of the project, daily start and end times, materials used, payment schedule, and clean-up procedures.

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Things to Consider

Choose a Local Contractor

Make sure you find a local contractor who is well established in your area.

Price Isn't Everything

Never choose a company based on the price. Remember you are paying for quality. A cheap quote may result in lower quality work.

Avoid Storm Chasers

NAvoid the roofers who come knocking on your door saying “We were just in the area.” Again you want to pick a contractor who has a satisfied client base.

Get It In Writing

Before paying for a new roof, get the terms of the project in writing. Make sure the prices are final and you are satisfied with the work before you pay.


Talk to your contractor. Verify that you both are on the same page with what you want accomplished. Make sure they return calls and send you all the proper documentation you ask for.

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Selecting the Best Roofing Material

Asphalt Shingles

Economical and easy to install, asphalt shingles are the most popular roofing material in the United States.

Pros: Comes in multiple colors, widely available, and inexpensive.

Cons: Not as durable as some other roofing material and does not provide as much installation.

Style: Works with many housing styles including the traditional suburban style houses.

Cost and Life Span: Price range from $70-120 a square and can last up to 20-25 years.

Clay & Concrete Tiles

Clay tiles adds texture and style to your roof and are considered extremely durable. They are heavy in weight so they must be installed by a professional. Concrete tiles are heavy as well but are versatile and usually less expensive than clay.

Pros: Both clay and concrete tiles are durable and concrete tiles are energy efficient.

Cons: Though durable, clay and concrete tiles are expensive and heavy.

Style: Both tiles work well with Spanish, Mediterranean, Mission, and Southwestern style homes.

Cost and Life Span: Range from $300-500 a tile and can last around 40-50 years.

Metal Roofing

Metal Roofs are extremely durable to all weather conditions. They come in two types: panels and shingles.

Pros: Metal roofing is long lasting, lightweight, and recyclable

Cons: More expensive than other roofing options.

Style: Metal roofing fits well on bungalows, cabins, and cottage-style homes.

Cost & Life Span: Metal roofing prices range from $100-300 a square but depending on the style you can reach up to $600-800 a square. Metal roofing will last 40-75 years if maintained.


Known for its beauty, stylish, and high quality appearance, slate includes a variety of colors which include black, green, gray, red, and purple.

Pros: Durable, fire-resistant, sustainable, and recyclable.

Cons: Expensive and heavy so requires extra framing to install.

Style: Slate usually looks good on colonial or European style houses.

Cost & Life Span: Pricing for slate starts at $600 and up per square but can last anywhere from 50-100 years.

Wood Shingles

One of the most traditional choices for hundreds of years, wood shingles are loved by homeowners.

Pros: Wood shingles look rustic and natural. Made from cedar, redwood, and southern pine. Regularly inexpensive compared to other options.

Cons: Prohibited in areas with a fire code and prone to mold and rot if in a wet climate.

Style: Wood shingles look great on traditional style cottages and bungalows as well as Cape Cod style homes.

Cost & Life Span: Wood shingles prices are around $100-150 a square and can last around 25-30 years.

Synthetic Roofing

Synthetic roofing is now just coming to market with rubber, plastic, and polymer style roofing. Created to give you the color, texture, and look you are searching for in a wood or slate roof.

Pros: Durable, less expensive, lighter weight.

Cons: Some synthetic products can absorb water and are not time- tested due to how new they are.

Style: Versatile with any type of housing.

Cost & Life Span: Prices start around $300 a square and has a warranty for up to 50 years.

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