Everybody knows how to pick a good roofing contractor, right?

You check the years they’ve been in business, make sure they have insurance, check out their references, and call the BBB. However, when it comes to quality home improvement in general, these are just minimum standards – the “price of entry.” They don’t necessarily separate the good guys from the bad. Or even the mediocre.

They’re important of course, especially years in business – the average new business lasts only four years. Ernie Smith & Sons Roofing has been around for over 20 years. (Read our story here.) Mature roofing companies carry the least risk. They’ve had time to “prove their stuff” and acquire a good track record. From years in the trenches they can spot potential problems and minimize surprises – and even absorb the costs of some minor ones from time to time.

Some roofing contractors advertise their “combined years of experience,” which isn’t exactly the same. And some roofers have been roofing all their lives – and changed their name several times!

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