Roofing Companies in Calgary: Estimates, Licensing & Insurance

Homeowners need protection. Most roofing companies in Calgary are reputable and trustworthy, but it’s hard for you to know who is and who isn’t based on a look at a website. After all, you’re busy living your life and don’t have a lot of time to do the necessary research.

Done Right Roofing has put together some information on estimates and contracts, and licensing and insurance requirements, so you’ll recognize the reputable roofing companies in Calgary when you see them.

Roofing Companies Calgary Requirements

Roofing Estimates and Contracts

Understand the difference between an estimate and a contract.

Roofing Licensing

Know what to check to be sure about the roofing companies’ licensing.

Roofing Insurance

Learn about the three types of insurance that are required.

Roofing Estimates & Roofing Contracts

The failure to get a written roofing contract can lead to costly disputes and misunderstandings.

A roofing estimate is not a contract. It will state a price for the project but won’t state other details of the work to be performed or the materials to be used. As a result, your final roofing costs may end up being much higher.

Misunderstandings are more often the cause of contract disagreement rather than actual dishonesty or incompetence. It is in your best interest that items that are important to you are stated in writing. Without a written contract covering all of the requirements of the job, you have no recourse if there are any disagreements. Worse, it will be difficult to legally enforce your position.

Problems are often discovered only after your old roof has been torn off. Unless your contract discusses how potential problems will be dealt with, you are at the contractor’s mercy because you have no roof over your head and the new roofing has to be installed to prevent further problems. The roofing costs you had budgeted may increase substantially.

Get it in Writing

In order to protect yourself and make sure that you and your contractor are on the same page, you should insist on a written contract – not a roofing estimate –  that includes the following:

  • Payment terms, clearly explained
  • The dates for starting and completing the work
  • Compliance with Alberta Building Code requirements
  • Compliance with manufacturer’s warranty and installation requirements
  • All material to be used, along with manufacturer’s name and brand name:
    • Shingles
    • Underlayment
    • Eave and leak protection
    • Flashing for drip edge, valleys, chimneys, wall, skylights
    • Vents
  • Details of manufacturer’s shingle warranty
  • Details of contractor’s workmanship warranty
  • Details of the exact work to be performed
  • Clear statement of whether the following are extras or included in the price:
    • Repair of roof deck
    • Installation of vents
    • Roof tear-off
    • Disposal of debris
  • Protection against liens placed on your property
  • A statement of your cancellation rights

A Reputable Contractor Won’t Mind

Getting a written roofing contract covering all the above points is the easiest way to ensure you are dealing with a reputable, high-quality roofing contractor. Professional roofing contractors in Calgary will be happy to answer all your questions and address your concerns.

If your contractor won’t provide the required information, you might question your choice.

Roofing Contractor Licensing Checks

There are several checks you can make about a roofing contractor’s licensing. The contractor should be licensed by the City of Calgary to conduct business in the city.

For added assurance of legitimacy, you should check whether the contractor is a member of the Better Business Bureau and check the contractor’s rating on the BBB website.

If the contractor is asking for a deposit on the work to be done, there are more serious roofing contractor licensing requirements by the Alberta government. This type of contractor is considered a “Prepaid Contractor” and must get a Prepaid Contractor’s License and post security. Additionally, they must meet the requirements of the Fair Trading Act and provide you with a detailed written contract.

Roofing Contractor’s Insurance Checks

There are three types of insurance that a reputable contractor will have – Workers’ Compensation, liability insurance, and bonding.

It is your responsibility to ensure that workers on your property are covered by Workers’ Compensation. If an uninsured worker is injured while working on your property, you may be liable and face a very costly settlement. An up-to-date WCB clearance letter should be provided by the contractor. If it isn’t, it is your responsibility to obtain WCB coverage yourself.

Liability insurance is also a must for your protection. Without liability insurance, you will be responsible for damages to your property, your neighbour’s property and even City of Calgary property.

Just as with licenses, there are two forms of roofing contractor insurance required. The first is Workers’ Compensation. All employees must be covered by workers’ compensation to protect both you and the contractor from lawsuits in case of injury.

Bonding is a requirement for prepaid contractors but it should be best practice for all contractors. A surety bond protects you from losing deposits and guarantees all the contractor’s obligations to you will be performed.