First and foremost, remember that roofing subcontractors are mostly great. They do excellent work, and they are a big help to roofing contractors. However, there are a few things that customers should know about roofing subcontractors in order to make an informed decision about who to hire to do the roofs.
Roofing Subcontractors Work for the Roofing Contractor
Yes, it seems like quite a strange arrangement, does it not? You hire the roofing contractor, and then the roofing contractor hires another contractor to complete the job. Actually, you should not be unnerved as this is a common occurrence in construction jobs. It is how the primary contractor handles an overload of work. He or she still makes a cut from the completed job, and the rest of the profits are paid out to the subcontractor and his/her crew. Some of your primary contractor's employees may be onsite working on your roof as well.
If Your Roof Job Is Going to Be Subcontracted, Ask a Lot of Questions
When you receive a quote from a roofing contractor, ask him/her if he/she uses subcontractors. If yes, then ask if the subcontractors are fully licensed and bonded themselves and who they are so you know who to expect on project day. You want to ask a lot of questions since it is the subcontractors you will be dealing with most of the time. If you have unresolved problems with the subcontractors, you need to call your roofing contractor to get him/her to resolve the issues with the subcontractors.
If the Work Is Done Wrong by the Subcontractor(s), You May Be Entitled to a New Roof for Free
Most contractors worth their salt will not subcontract work out to just anyone. They check out the credentials and the work of their subcontractors to make sure that your new roof is installed perfectly. If it is not done correctly and/or a building inspector tells you it has to be redone, you may be entitled to a new roof for free. Of course, you should check all of the fine print in your contract to make sure that there is nothing in the contract that would prevent you from using this clause if and when such a thing did occur. (However, that is very unlikely anyway.)
If There Are Problems with the New Roof, Take the Problems to the Primary Contractor
Since the subcontractor is essentially working for your primary contractor, any problems you have with the completed roof that occur up to one year or less after the roof is finished should be discussed with your primary contractor. The reason for this is that the primary contractor is the one held responsible for any issues with a finished roof. It is he/she that needs to fix these problems and he/she who is most likely to fix the problems. Additionally, the subcontractor is often in the wind, being a freelance agent and all. It is not uncommon for you to lack contact information with the subcontractor either since the job technically belongs to the primary contractor and he/she is supposed to be the one you contact for everything.
Despite the above information, you should know that subcontractors and the contractors for whom they work are generally very good. They do excellent work, and if there is anything amiss, the regular inspections of a building inspector help correct issues sooner than later. It is highly unlikely you will have any problems at all with your new roof. However, that does not mean you should not be adequately informed of what to do in those rare occasions where you need to know how to proceed.
Visit a site like http://www.americanrenovationssc.com/ if you're planning a roofing project.