Roofing Contracts Guide

Roofing Contracts Line by Line

Your Roofing contract need to be gone through line by line to figure out exactly what is and what is not included in your job.  The following is an example of a standard roofing contract you can expect to receive from most roofing contractors.

We have taken the time to dissect the simple details of a standard roofing Contract to show you what you may get when you sign a contract that reads like the one below.

Your roofing contract should be written with details that ensure you get what you paid for.

Roofing Contracts Written Like a Roofers

Customer: Mr. and Mrs. Clemente
Address: 1234 San Clemente Ave.
City: San Clemente, Ca


  1. Remove roofing and haul away all debris.
  2. Inspect wood and replace or repair as needed at nominal cost.
  3. Install high grade roof sheathing.
  4. Install all new fasteners to roof sheathing.
  5. Install all new roofing/felt paper.
  6. Fasten all paper down to protect from any high winds.
  7. Install new edging metal flashing to roof edges.
  8. Install new valley metal flashing to all valleys.
  9. Repaint, reseal, and install all sheet metal flashing to match roof.
  10. Repaint and reseal chimney flashing.
  11. Fasten all asphalt shingles, concrete tiles and shakes with new fasteners.
  12. Install all new ridge capping.
  13. Clean all trash.
  14. Permits to be pulled.


Payments Below

Deposit:  $ 650.00                  50% Payment on material delivery              Balance on Completion:

Start Date:                                                                 Completion Time:


The above is a good example of a Roofing ContractSS that at first glance appears to have everything you need in it.  In our opinion that roofing contract example is a very vague contract that is lacking the necessary details that will protect you in case a dispute comes up.

You should be aware that if a dispute ever arises about the workmanship or materials provided for your roof that the Roofing ContractS will be the sole source for figuring out if the Contractor did what he was supposed to do.

Roofing contracts that lack details make it easy for the Roofer to take short cuts that still allow him to adhere to the contract in case of a legal dispute.


1.  Remove roofing and haul away all debris.


PROBLEM:  It is not clear what roofs are to be removed.  If you plan to have the detached garage or patio roof included, then you should make sure it is written in.  Maybe you have a shed that you think should be included.

Your Roofing Contract should be specific about the areas to be roofed.  Another important detail to keep in mind is whether your city requires that the removed roofing be hauled to a recycling facility and recycled?  If so, your Contractor will be required to show proof of this at some point in the permit process.

Did you know that the city you live in may require a deposit (as much as $1500.00) when the permit it pulled to ensure that recycling is properly done?  This may be included as a cost to you for the cost of the permit.

You may be able to get reimbursed for this if the contractor properly disposes and recycles the roofing as per your local city building code requires and has proof of this.  You better make sure this is in your Roofing Contract or you may be in for a surprise.

2.  Inspect wood and replace or repair as needed at nominal cost. 


PROBLEMS:  First off, what does “as needed mean” and who decides this?  You guessed it, the roofer.

It would be in your best interest to walk around your house and get an understanding of what type of wood damage you may have and what the costs involved for replacing it.

It would also be recommended to walk the perimeter with the roofer and point these details out.  No doubt, this needs to be specifically written into the Roofing Contract.

What you may not know is that many roofing contractors do not like to do wood repair.  It slows down the job and it takes direct involvement in the job on their part.

Keep in mind that just the willingness by a Contractor to do every little type of woodwork you need is not good enough.  There are several types of wood repairs you may need to have done and some of the more complicated ones may not get done correctly.

Some of the woodwork you will need to have done will need a specific type of lumber that can be found at the big box home improvement stores such as: kiln dried wood or rough on all four sides.

Will the roofer do the necessary priming and painting of the wood before to wood is installed?

These are the little details that can make or break a job.

3.  Install high grade roof sheathing. 

PROBLEM:  What type of sheathing is he talking about?  Is he going to included OSB (organic strand board), Plywood, CDX plywood and what about size of the sheeting?

Now here is something to think about.  Some cities do not require a sheeting inspection.  The Contractor nail the decking anyway he sees fit, and no one will ever be the wiser.

Another common practice is the roofer will simply substitute the plywood sheeting for filling in the gaps between the existing 1×6 that is already installed.

This type of solid decking in not suitable for all types of roofing materials such as tile.

4.  Install all new fasteners to roof sheathing. 

PROBLEM:  It is not clear as to what type of fasteners is going to be used where.  Staples are minimum requirement according to most building codes.  Nails are highly recommended by every major roofing materials manufacturer.

You may need to use screws in some instances.  When it comes to the fasteners being used you need the Roofing Contract to specify what kind of fastener for each purpose and what length the fastener will be.

5.  Install all new roofing felt paper. 

PROBLEM:  This does not adequately describe the type of weight of the roofing felt which can be critical.  Roofing felts come in many different types, grades, and weights. You can purchase lower quality roof felts or factory reject commonly referred to as “seconds”.

Some of the different weights and types of roofing felts are: 15lb, 30lb, & 40lb, and then there super lightweight synthetic roofing felts and premium ice and water shield product which are very high-end roofing felts.

Roofing felts are typically made for certain applications.  Just because it is more expensive or made from a special material like synthetic doesn’t mean it is the felt for your specific application.

6.  Fasten all roofing felt paper down to protect from any high winds. 

PROBLEM:  The issue here again is the lack of detail into what kind of fastener is going to be used and how many will be used.  Is there going to be enough fasteners used in the event of some high winds during the installation?

7.  Install new edging metal to roof edges. 

PROBLEM:  You need to know what size the edge metal is and what color it will be.  Don’t just assume they are using a baked-on enamel drip edge metal.

And, if you want a certain color that matches your trim then make sure it says so.  Nothing looks worse than bright white edge metal on a dark trim.

When it comes to edge metal size does matter.  To small and it looks cheap.  Too big and it looks odd.

Two-inch edge metal is a safe for most asphalt composition shingle roofs.

8.  Install new valley metal to all valleys. 

PROBLEM:  What color, galvanized or painted, what size 18” or 24” and is it ribbed or not?

9.  Repaint and reseal all sheet metal to match roof. 

PROBLEM:  What should be detailed here is what pieces of sheet metal is going to be removed and replaced.  If this is not specific you may get stuck with your old metal when it would be so easy to replace it.  After all, if not now when?

Observation – Almost every new roof I see has the old flashing re-used somewhere.

It should state what type of sealant is to be used and where.  It is ok to use a lower-quality roofers tar for any application that is to be covered by the shingles or tile.

Sealant that is going to be exposed to direct sunlight after the application should be a much better quality.

10.  Repaint and reseal chimney area. 

PROBLEM:  What should be written here is remove and replace and then specify what the replacement will be.  Typical chimneys have a front, side, and rear flashing that will need to be removed and replaced.

Depending on the type of roof to be installed will depend on what type of flashing is used.

11.  Fasten all asphalt shingles, concrete tiles and shakes with new fasteners. 

PROBLEM:  The contractor should specify whether he is planning to use staples or nails.  Keep in mind staples are that are not recommended in certain applications and nails are the preferred choice of fastener for most roofing shingles and tiles.

It should be stated how many nails per shingle is he going to use.  This can be helpful for getting an extended wind warranty from a manufacture which can obtained if the roofer uses extra nails per shingle.

12.  Install all new ridge capping. 

PROBLEM:  The Roofing Contract needs to specify the manufacturer and the class of the product.  You need to know that the roofer is furnishing and install a #1 grade Class “A” roofing product for your hips and ridges.

13.  Clean all trash. 

PROBLEM:  The cleanup should be reasonably specific especially if you have a need for the job to be cleaned every day.  Where the trash is going to be stored should also be considered.

14.  Clean all trash. 

PROBLEM:  Here you would like to see the mention of if the cost of the permit is included and that all mandatory city inspections will be completed before final payment is issued.

It is best if the roofer agrees to give you the signed city or county permit and only then ask for payment.


Payments Below:

Deposit:  $ 650.00 (Deposit exceeds 10%)

50% Payment on Material delivery    This should say:  Owner to pay supplier directly (it is best to pay to materials by check yourself to prevent unwanted liens)

Balance on Completion (On Final Inspection)

Start Date:  Needs to be filled out                                 Completion Time:  How many days?

Roofing Contracts Explained in Detail

There are so many variables which can adjust the price and the outcome of your satisfaction.  One reason a roofer may prefer to use a vague roofing contract is they can cut a few corners if needed and keep the project profitable in the event they under bid the job.  Which happens a lot.

If you live in Orange County, Ca we do have a recommendation for you.  Because we are a roof repair only roofing contractor, we have can only refer you to who we believe is the best for re-roofing your home.

That would be Bill Priebe at BP Roofing in Aliso Viejo. Bill requires you to fill out his contact form.  Just click the link and you will be redirected out of our website to Bill’s website.

Our take on BP Roofing:  When you call Bill Priebe you really do not have to get a bunch of bids.  His pricing is standard and competitive.  I have known Bill to use nothing but the best roofing products and materials.

Using a roofer like BP Roofing will increase the cost of your job in some cases.  In the long run it is well worth it.

If you need a re-roof, we HIGHLY recommend Bill Priebe at BP Custom Roofing.

roofing contracts


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South County Roofing prides itself on having the strongest 2 Year tile roof leak repair warranties in the business. Furthermore, we back our roof leak repair warranties up in writing with our Exclusive “No Leak Warranty” that guarantees you your money back in case we cannot repair your leak as written and agreed to.

Getting a warranty in writing that spells out exactly what will happen in the event of the leak not being fixed is so important. Moreover, what is even more important is hiring a company that does such good work that you will probably never need that warranty. We believe that is us.