Though it may seem standard for any roofing company to have proper licensing, insurance and certification, unfortunately that isn’t always the case. We encourage you to do a little digging prior to hiring us or any other roofing/home improvement company to ensure they have the proper licenses, insurance and certification needed for the job. Most people don’t realize the importance of these until it is too late.
Every state has different regulations when it comes to licensing. In California, the governing agency for any construction company license is the CSLB (Contractors State License Board). By law, any construction-related project over $500 (material and labor) must be completed by a licensed contractor. Just as importantly, each trade requires a different license—someone with a plumbing license is not allowed to do roofing, neither is a general contractor allowed to do just roofing or just plumbing.
Types of Licenses:
- B license: this is for a general contractor. A general contractor must take projects with a minimum of 3 trades, with the exception of framing and carpentry.
- C license: this license is for specialty contractors such as plumbers, roofers, electricians, painters, etc.
- A & D licenses: these licenses are less common. A licenses are used by Engineering contractors to build bridges and roadways. D licenses are for very specific, niche trades such as wood tanks, air and water balancing, and central vacuum systems.
When hiring a roofer, ensure they hold a C39 License.
The CSLB has a portal where you can search if a person or company is licensed, and what type of license they have. The portal will also tell you if the license is active, or if they have a Bond and Workers’ Compensation, however it does not tell you about General Liability insurance.
The future is unpredictable, which is why it is our top priority to be prepared for all circumstances. Below is a list of the insurance we have as a company. You should check with any company you want to hire to make sure they have insurance as well.
There are 3 major types of insurance to look out for when hiring a contractor:
- Workers’ Compensation Insurance, a.k.a. Workers’ Comp, is a form of insurance providing wage replacement and medical benefits to employees injured in the course of employment. If the contractor you hire does not have Workers’ Comp and one of his employees gets injured on the job, you could be held liable. It is your responsibility to make sure a contractor has Workers’ Comp prior to hiring them. Here is a copy of our Workers’ Comp Policy. This is not private information and any company that is not willing to provide you with a copy of the policy, or says they will provide you a copy after you sign a contract, probably doesn’t have it. Furthermore, we recommend you call and verify if the insurance policy is valid and active (we have seen and heard of instances where contractors forge these documents, knowing most consumers do not check).
- General Liability, or GL Insurance, pretty much covers anything that can go wrong on your property, excluding company vehicles and employee injuries. For instance, GL Insurance covers property damage, such as if a painter spills paint on your driveway, or if a roofer accidentally starts a fire. In the same way as Workers’ Comp, we recommend you verify that a company’s GL Policy is valid and active. Click here to view our GL Policy.
To make matters even more complicated, a lot of GL Policies have exclusions. Exclusions are put in place to minimize liability and cut cost for the contractor, however that could mean a huge cost for you. A few common exclusions to watch for are HOA’s or Townhomes and torch down work. Our policy has some standard exclusions, such as a terrorism exclusion or pandemic/plague exclusions, those are normal and to be expected. In order to spot these exclusions, you have to request a copy of the GL Policy from the company and actually read through it.
- Commercial Auto Insurance is the same thing as regular car insurance, only it’s for companies. Some contractors, especially smaller ones, decide not to get a Commercial Auto Policy and stick with their personal auto insurance to save money. However, regular auto insurance will deny any claims if they know the vehicle was being used for commercial purposes. Commercial Auto Insurance generally has higher limits of liability as well. Here is a link to a copy of our Commercial Auto Insurance Certificate of Insurance.
There are different types of bonds in construction. The most common in regular retail projects is a License Bond. A License Bond is required by the CSLB and is generally very inexpensive, so most license contractors do have an active bond. Here is a copy of ours. A License Bond only covers up to $15,000 in damages, which is pretty much nothing.
Other types of bonds include Project Bonds, Bid Bonds, and Performance Bonds, which are generally used for government projects.
Our Other Certifications
Below are additional certifications we hold with different manufacturers. They are not required by law, nor do they mean that the companies that have them are the greatest. It is just one additional aspect to consider when vetting a contractor. Most of these certifications are earned by attending multiple trainings and having experience with a certain product.