When a California homeowner considers replacing or repairing their roof, it’s important to know the right questions to ask and the answers to expect from a roofer. Asking the right questions can mean the difference between a seamless roof installation and a terrible experience. In this article, you will find out what essential questions you should ask and how to evaluate potential roofers to choose the right one for your project.

What to Ask Your California Roofer

What is Your License Number?

In the state of California, roofers must have a valid contractor’s license or they can’t legally operate. It is always important to ask roofers for their valid license number because it verifies that they have the proper certifications to conduct roofing work. You can also call the California State License Board with the contractor’s license number to double-check if they’re properly licensed and if they’ve ever been suspended or had complaints filed against them.

How Long has Your Business Been in Operation?

How long a roofer has been in business speaks volumes about their quality of service. Long-established roofers may have a longer list of references, more experience in the industry, and knowledge of the newest technologies in the market. Roofers with shorter business history may lack the experience that highly-regarded roofers have. It’s a good practice to ask for references from older roofers in order to get a better idea of the quality of their work.

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Do You Carry Insurance?

Worker’s compensation and liability insurance coverage is required of all roofers in California. A legitimate roofer should have both insurance coverage types and have the documents to prove it. Without the proper insurance any potential legal situation may not be covered in the event of an accident. Asking to see an up-to-date insurance certificate can make sure that you and your contractor are properly protected.

What is My Estimated Payment Schedule?

The payment schedule should be included in the written contract and is typically divided into multiple payments that correspond to milestones during the course of the project. Make sure you read the contract and fully understand the payment plan before signing.

Who Manages the Job On-site?

Knowing who will be actively involved with the project on-site is extremely important. It’s good to know the name of each employee who will be working on your roof and verify if they’re properly qualified and experienced. Additionally, make sure you understand who you speak or contact if there’s any issue with the roofing installation.

What Are Your Safety Procedures?

Promptly asking about a roofer’s safety protocols shows them that you are serious about the safety of the crew and your home. Reputable roofers take safety seriously, and they should have a safety program complete with safety meetings and protocol for personal protective equipment (PPE).

What Type of Repair or Replacement Are You Suggesting?

Be sure to research the repair or replacement that you plan to do. A roofer may recommend products or repair methods that you may have not yet considered. Before you agree to any roofer’s repair or replacement suggestions, research the costs and the end result on your own so you know that it is the best option.

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Do You Offer Any Warranty?

Your roofer should be willing to stand behind their work with a warranty. Typical warranties range from one to ten years. The length of the warranty will depend on the type of materials and the manufacturer of the chosen product. Make sure that the warranty is offered in writing before signing a contract.

What Types of Review or Testimonials Do You Have?

Asking for reviews from a roofer gives you an understanding of previous customer’s experiences with the contractor. Good reviews from former customers should reassure you that the roofer can be trusted and can provide good-quality results.

Can You Provide a Written Estimate?

A written estimate provides proof of the contract terms and greater transparency in terms of the expected cost of the materials and labor used in the project. Make sure that the estimate includes materials and labor costs, projected start and completion dates, as well as payment terms and conditions.

People Also Ask

What is the typical cost of hiring a California Roofer?

The typical cost of having a roofer in California differs based on the type and size of the roof, the materials used, labor costs and the contractor’s fees. Generally, the cost of a basic roof installation or repair can range from $5,000 to $20,000.

How long does it take for a roofer to install a roof?

The amount of time it takes to install a roof largely depends on the size and complexity of the roof being installed. On average, it can take two to three days for a more standard roof installation, while a complex roof can take up to three weeks.

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How often should a roof be inspected?

It’s always best to get your roof inspected and maintained once a year, regardless of the type of roof you have. An annual inspection can help identify any minor issues with your roof before they become bigger problems.

What is roof flashing?

Roof flashing is a protective barrier made from metal or other materials that helps prevent water from infiltrating walls and other areas of the roof. Flashing is usually applied around chimneys, walls, and other areas of the roof where there’s greater risk of water seepage.

Do California roofers offer emergency services?

Many California roofers offer emergency services and can provide emergency repairs when needed. When contacting a roofer for an emergency service, be sure to ask if there is any additional labor or material costs associated with emergency repairs.


Having a quality roof is essential for the comfort and safety of your home and family. To find the perfect roofer for your project, it’s important to ask the right questions to ensure that they’re professional and experienced. Asking these questions and addressing any of your concerns can lead to a successful project and peace of mind.