Q & A - Do I need a contract with my roofer?

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December 25, 2016

A Contract with your roofer is important. It protects both you, and your contractor. It should not be looked at, as a mistrust thing but as a clear written understanding as to what the scope of work that is to be done, the materials to be used and the terms of payment.

The days of a handshake agreement sadly are gone. Having a detailed agreement written and signed by both parties solves a lot of problems that can come up during the roofing job. Recently, I received an email from a person asking about a roofing problem that they had with their roofing contractor. The question was . . . . . My roofer started to tear my roof off and came down off the ladder and said he needed $1,000 more since the roof had two layers on it. This homeowner said No Way! You said you where going remove the roof and install a new one for this price. The homeowner received a few bids and chose the cheaper one because “he seemed like a good roofer”. Do I have to pay?

Who is right? Who is wrong? who should pay for the extra layer? Your answer may depend on if you are a roofer or a homeowner reading this blog. The point of telling this story is a contract if clearly written would have addressed the issues like this that come up. In this situation, the contractor doesn’t want to absorb the extra cost of another layer of roofing to be removed. Then the homeowner doesn’t want to spend more money on the roof project. Having an issue like this can hold the job up, create hard feelings and make the project frustrating for both the roofer and homeowner.

5 Important things to have in your Roofing Contract

  1. Name of both parties and the address of the business and where the work is to be performed.
  2. Scope of work with details like products to be used, layers tear off, underlayment, new flashing, clean up. Then also what won't be done like dry rot, painting, change orders like extra work not covered in the agreement.
  3. Change Orders happen with construction projects and are important to be addressed in the contract. Maybe the job has dry rot that is discovered after the roof is off. It is wise to know in print what the hourly rate is for extra work that is needed instead of negotiating after.
  4. Contractors insurance certification, Worker comp, and Liability.
  5. A start date and amount of days it should take to finish along with the payment schedule. How the roof is being paid for and when needs to be very clear.

So having a clear written contract is the best way to hire a roofer. When all the details are written down and reviewed, the job will progress better when issues come up.


Have a question? AskARoofer HERE

Need a contractor?  Check out our list of Roofing Contractors HERE.




January 19, 2017
Thanks for information. We are also Roofing Contractor Athens GA.
January 28, 2017
Thanks for the GREAT Contract Ideas ?
Lindsey @roofers marylad
February 13, 2017
As a Home Contractor, this is really a wonderful information for me. I really appreciate your work and time :). I have learned many new ideas from your posts.
Best Roof Guy
February 17, 2017
Of course you need a contract, a new roof is a big deal! Not only is it expensive, but there are so many things that could potentially go wrong. Sadly we live in a society that is law suit happy. Not only does the home owner need a contractor, but the roo
July 16, 2017
A contract is the first thing you sign before starting the work. It is very important. Secondly, contractor should be fully licensed and bonded in the state you are having the work done.

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