You Get What You Pay For

03. November 2016 Uncategorized 0

yay-3560281-digitalI’ve been living in the same house for almost 30 years now. It has certainly seen better days, but I’d like to think I’ve done a fairly good job of maintaining it. For an older house, everything works as it should, and the walls have yet to crumble. The roof on the other hand…

A few months ago, a couple of loose shingles reminded me that I was overdue for a roof inspection. I knew my roof was nearing the end of its life, and I fully expected a poor prognosis. I was prepared to pay for a new roof. The inspector was more or less there to confirm. He did not disappoint. His report all but said ‘you need to replace this roof ASAP’.

I tried to track down the roofing company that installed my roof 20 years ago, but they were no longer in business. I can only assume their workmanship was a little bit too good, because otherwise they were fantastic and I cannot begin to guess why they are no longer around. Unfortunately, this meant I would have to find another roofing contractor, and I had no idea where to start. My daughter had bought a newly built house, so they have yet to replace or even repair their roof.

I came across an ad for a roofing company in one of the local papers not long after. Not wanting to put off replacing my roof any longer, I gave them a call to ask for a quote. The estimate they gave me was much less than I had expected. I asked a few questions to learn more about their company but I was already sold on the price. In hindsight, I should have suspected something was amiss.

Long story short, they took much longer than agreed upon to complete the new roof and sprung an avalanche of hidden costs on me after the work began. I held out, just wanting the work to be done with so I could go back to enjoying some quality time with Netflix.

Skip ahead, and here I am just a few months later strategically placing buckets around the house during every storm. I’m too old to be learning this lesson, but here it is: if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

If any contractor quotes you a price that is well below the average rate, you should ask yourself whether it is because:

  • Their employees are not properly paid, trained, certified, or insured
  • They use inferior quality products
  • They cut corners to save money
  • They plan to upsell you or charge additional fees after the fact

These unethical practices are often used by lesser known companies. A professional contractor upholds a higher standard that is consistent with their industry’s best practices. They have a name to protect, and operate with long term objectives in mind. After doing some research, I’ve put together a post about how to find a qualified roofing contractor.