Hiring a competent, ethical, and experienced roofing contractor is critical to experiencing a successful outcome for your project. Here are 4 things you should know about your contractor before you hire him:
- Make sure the contractor you are thinking of hiring is licensed.
Hiring a licensed professional roofing contractor is important to ensure the project is performed correctly and to protect your legal rights should any issues arise during or after the completion of your project. The Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR) will only pursue and prosecute a licensed contractor. Complaints received concerning an unlicensed roofing contractor will be referred by the DBPR to local law enforcement if there is a claim involving fraudulent activity.
- Keep in mind that a “qualified” contractor is NOT a “licensed” contractor.
“Qualified” contractors are “borrowing” another contractor’s license to perform its services. Short of costly attorney expenses and a lengthy court process, you have virtually no recourse against an unlicensed vendor who is “qualified” by another individual. If you DO decide to work with a “qualified” contractor, hire an attorney to review your contract to ensure that the company you are hiring is both personally and professionally liable for their workmanship.
- Get to know your contractor.
Research the CEO, company officers, and the contractor you are vetting through the Department of Business and Professional Regulation. Pay for a background check on the contractor and owners of the company. Check with your local Circuit Court and State Bankruptcy Court to ensure that the person you are hiring is not currently operating in Chapter 13 Bankruptcy or in financial duress. Ask the contractor, CEO or company officers to provide a criminal history in Florida and any other state they have operated in. If they refuse, don’t hire them.
- Research their employees.
Contact the Division of Workers’ Compensation to make sure all of the employees who will be working on your project are covered. Ask your contractor to provide an E-Verify report for each employee who may be used on your project. If they refuse, don’t hire them.
An honest contractor will have no problem complying with any of the information requests outlined above. For more information, check out our Avoid Fraud page.