Your roof is an essential part of your home’s structure that protects it from the elements. The Florida sun and the risk of high winds from hurricanes make a well-maintained roof a crucial concern for homeowners. Before you hire a roofing contractor to repair or replace your roof, there are several credentials you should look for to help you make the best choice.
Roofing Contractor Licenses
Any roofing contractor you hire must be licensed to work in the state of Florida and the town or city you live in. Although states have different licensing requirements, contractors who obtain contracts for roofing work in Florida must be licensed by the Florida Construction Industry Licensing Board. There are also different types of licenses a roofing contractor may need.
Many municipalities require that independent contractors obtain a local business license to conduct business within that particular jurisdiction. If you want to check if a roofing contractor needs a license to do business where you live, contact your tax office or local chamber of commerce to find out what government official or agency is responsible for issuing local business licenses.
A roofing contractor may apply for a local contractor license after meeting the licensing requirements for that municipality or county. The contractor can then register with the Florida Construction Industry Licensing Board. Once a contractor is registered or obtains a certificate of competency to work within a particular jurisdiction, they may accept work only in that area.
However, it’s up to you to make sure that a roofing contractor is licensed to work in your town or city. Otherwise, you can face fines for work that an unlicensed contractor completes that isn’t in compliance with current building codes. When checking whether a contractor is licensed to do business in your area, the local building authority in your district is responsible for issuing certificates of competency to contractors.
Before applying for a certified contractor license in Florida, a roofing contractor must first successfully pass all parts of a written state examination administered by the Construction Industry Licensing Board. Passing the exam shows that the contractor demonstrates competency, knowledge and skill in the field.
Roofing contractors who are granted a certified license may contract for work in any area of the state. Even if a contractor doesn’t do roofing jobs statewide, some Florida counties require roofing contractors to be certified rather than registered. Contact the Florida Department of Business & Professional Regulation to verify that a contractor is licensed in Florida.
Contractors in Florida must also show that they are financially responsible before the Construction Industry Licensing Board issues a license. Applicants must have no unsatisfied liens or judgments against them or their roofing companies. They must also have a FICO credit score of 660 or higher to show that they are in good credit standing.
Like other states, roofing contractors in Florida are required to comply with any applicable state laws and the regulations of local jurisdictions for completing a project. When repairing or installing a roof on your home, the roofing contractor must meet the mandated code requirements where you live.
Before starting a job, a contractor needs to obtain the necessary building permits issued by government officials in the municipality or county where your home is located.
Contractor Insurance Coverage
As proof of insurance coverage, request copies of certificates of insurance directly from the contractor’s insurance company. These documents verify that the roofing contractor carries workers’ compensation and contractors’ liability insurance.
A certificate of insurance lists the name of the insured, the types and maximum limits of coverage and the effective dates of the coverage. Because state laws determine the amount of benefits paid to workers injured on the job, the certificate does not list a limit for workers’ compensations coverage. Check the date to verify that the insurance coverage is current.
Workers’ Compensation Insurance
Workers’ compensation insurance provides coverage in case one of the contractor’s workers is hurt on the job. If the contractor doesn’t have workers’ compensation insurance, you could be liable for paying the injured worker’s medical bills and lost wages if the person cannot work after being injured. Therefore, it’s important to make sure that the contractor has insured all employees working on your property.
Contractor Liability Insurance
A contractor’s liability insurance covers property damage or third party injuries roofers while on the job. If the roofing contractor doesn’t carry liability insurance and somehow causes property damage while completing the project, you may find yourself paying for the roofer’s mistake.
Ask if a roofing contractor is a member of the National Roofing Contractors Association, Florida Roofing and Sheet Metal Contractors Association or another professional organization. Memberships in trade organizations tell you that the contractor is competent, ethical and interested in learning more about the roofing industry.
If you are looking for a roofing contractor you can trust to repair or replace your roof, Acoma Roofing, Inc.offers a variety of roofing services to protect the investment you make in your home.