Do you like surf and turf? Well we all know it is an expensive meal so let me ask you a simple question. If someone offered you this dish for the discounted price of only $3.99 would you feel good about it? Do you think you would be getting the quality you deserve?
Buying a new roof, or any other home improvement project for that matter, should be thought of in the same manner. Now I am not saying to take the first bid that you get or not to price shop a little bit. It is very important to know your options and to make an informed decision here. Fortunately for most customers, purchasing a new roof is not an extremely emotional experience as it is not something you get to drive everyday or enjoy in a more visceral manner. In fact, most people put it off until they suffer some major issues but that is a whole different matter all together. The point here is that when something seems to good to be true it typically is. If a estimate comes in substantially lower then the rest you are most likely getting sub par materials installed or are missing some certain “bumpable” opportunities for the contractor to up charge in the end.
When you are comparing your quotes make sure that you are comparing apples to apples by asking all of the right questions and getting the answers in writing if possible. How many feet of ice guard gets installed and where? How many nails per shingle? What kind of shingle is being used? What is the warranty? How big are the crews? How long will the job take to get completed once started? How long until the job can even get started?
Look out for opportunities for the contractor to charge you more then originally quoted when looking over the paperwork before signing. It is best if the quote includes all wood replacement because you do not want to negotiate final pricing once your roof has been stripped down to the bare wood. If they cant give you an accurate quote before hand they are probably not very good at their job and you are better off dealing with a company that has the experience to know exactly what the job is going to entail before they start working.
Do they give you an estimate with the good, better, best options? If so, are you ever really going to feel good after you just had the cheapest system they offer installed on your beautiful home? It is the contractors job to negotiate material pricing with their suppliers and they should be ashamed not installing the best system they are capable of for everyone of their customers. Such behavior begs to ask the question if they are offering the same options to all of their customers or discriminating in such decisions.
The deposit is another important factor that needs to be considered before making your final decision. Typically, the less money that they require up front the better. you want to do business with a company that can afford their own materials and that you can establish mutual trust with. When having major construction done on your home you are starting a long term relationship with your contractor whether you like it or not. Make sure that relationship starts out in the proper fashion. You don’t want to give anyone even a dime of your hard earned money and then feel like they are holding you hostage. Even worse, you don’t want to give someone your money and then never see them again.
When the salesman quotes you an outrageous price to begin with and then offer a huge reduction if you sign the deal today it is time to ask them to leave your property immediately. On the one hand it is their job to try and get you to buy today so a little negotiation doesn’t hurt. But there is a big difference between healthy negotiation and blatant attempts at ripping someone off. If you are smart enough to be reading this then you probably wont fall for such a tactic but unfortunately the 80 year old grandmother down the road may not be so lucky. It is amazing that such tactics are even used anymore by individuals but simply unbelievable that some major companies out there not only condone but train their sales staff to behave this way.