Get Quotes from Top Roofing Contractors in Washington Dc, DC

Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Roofing Contractor in Washington D.C.

Even though most roofs are designed to last for decades, home building experts advise that you get your roofs inspected every three years for signs of wear and tear. However, factors like design and material quality, poor installation, rodent damage, and natural or man-made disasters may affect your roof's lifespan and even necessitate more frequent inspections and repair actions. However, before you hire a roofer in Washington D.C., you should always solicit answers to the following questions to ensure that they are aptly qualified for the job:

Are You Licensed to Practice as a Roofing Contractor in Washington, D.C.?

Roofers that wish to operate in Washington D.C. must be licensed as either General Contractors/Construction Managers or Home Improvement Contractors with the district's Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA) before they can legally do so. Roofers with a general contractor/construction manager license are authorized to perform work on residential and commercial properties and oversee work done by other contractors involved in a project. On the other hand, the scope of work for roofers who hold a home improvement contractor license is limited to repairs on residential properties.

Applications for DCRA-issued contractor licenses can be made online via the department's DC Business Portal or in person at its office located at:

1100 4th Street SW
2nd Floor
Washington, DC 20024

Applicants who choose the online option must create a personal user account before they can access the portal. Likewise, all applicants are generally expected to provide certain documentation when applying for these licenses, which include:

  • Proof of tax registration as well as corporate registration where applicable
  • Proof of liability insurance and bonding where applicable
  • A valid certificate of occupancy or home occupation permit

Failure to obtain an appropriate contractor license from the DCRA before providing roofing services in Washington D.C. is considered a Class 1 infraction, and violators face minimum penalties of at least $2,000 in fines.

Inquiries concerning the contractor licensing requirements for roofers who wish to operate in Washington, D.C., can be directed to the DCRA at (202) 442-4400. You can also call this number or utilize the department's Access DC portal to verify your intended roofer's licensing status. Note that the creation of a user account will be required to utilize the aforementioned portal properly.

How Much Do You Charge Compared to Other Roofers in the City?

The rates that you will be charged by your roofer when undertaking roofing projects in Washington, D.C., are determined by several factors, namely:

  • The size of your roof
  • The nature and scope of the work to be done
  • The style and design of your roof
  • The complexity of the job
  • The labor intensity of the job
  • The type of roofing material involved
  • Your location within the district

It is always ideal to get and compare rates and estimates for your intended roofing project from three or more roofers in the district before making a final selection of one to handle your project. This helps ensure that you are charged a reasonable fee for the project and is also a useful technique to identify dishonest roofers who bilk unsuspecting homeowners and property managers by inflating their rates. Note that some roofers also fraudulently lower their rates to lure consumers in, so you should equally be wary of significantly lower estimates.

Roofers in Washington, D.C., earn an average wage of $53,090 annually. The average hourly wages of roofers in Washington, D.C., and those of roofers in other major cities in the country are compared below:

Washington D.C. Roofing Contractors Hourly Average Wage
Baltimore Roofing Contractors Hourly Average Wage
Arlington Roofing Contractors Hourly Average Wage
Richmond Roofing Contractors Hourly Average Wage
Annapolis Roofing Contractors Hourly Average Wage
New York City Roofing Contractors Hourly Average Wage
Los Angeles Roofing Contractors Hourly Average Wage
Chicago Roofing Contractors Hourly Average Wage
Houston Roofing Contractors Hourly Average Wage
Phoenix Roofing Contractors Hourly Average Wage
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Will You Get the Roofing Permits Required as per the Washington, D.C., Building Code?

Construction and home improvement projects, including roofing projects, that occur in Washington, D.C., typically require a district-issued building permit before they commence. However, permit exemptions may be made for in-kind roofing replacements and roofing projects where an area of less than 100 square feet is being re-roofed or repaired and not more than two layers of membrane or asphalt shingles are involved. Note that a building permit must be obtained when metal flashing is to be repaired, removed, or replaced.

The DC Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA) is responsible for issuing building permits in the district, and parties that wish to obtain permits from this department will be required to take the following steps:

  • Clearly define the nature and scope of the project and contact the DC Office of Zoning at (202) 727-6311 to determine whether the property in question is subject to any development restrictions. This can also be done online via the DCRA's SCOUT platform.
  • Complete and submit a building permit application online through the DCRA Permit Wizard Portal for one or two-family residential projects or the DCRA Citizen Access Portal for commercial projects. Note that the use of either of these permitting portals will require the creation of a user account. Also, after the permit application has been submitted and screened, applicants may be required to provide project plans and other supporting documents for additional review. These additional documents will have to be uploaded online via the DCRA's ProjectDox portal.

The DCRA typically issues requested building permits after applications and necessary additional documentation have been submitted, reviewed, and approved, and the applicants have paid all required permit fees. Note that the department may undertake inspections at various phases of the permitted project after these building permits are issued to ensure compliance with the pertinent requirements of the district's building and construction regulations.

You can contact the DCRA to direct any permitting or inspection-related questions that you have by calling phone numbers (202) 442-4400 and (202) 442-8959, via email, or in person at the following address:

1100 4th Street SW
Washington, DC 20024
Hours: 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Mondays - Wednesdays, Fridays, and 9:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. on Thursdays

What Kind of Roofing Services Do You Offer?

Professional roofing contractors in Washington D.C. are typically adept at handling several types of common roof designs, styles, and materials, such as asphalt shingle roofing, tile roofing, flat roofing, metal roofing, wood roofing, slate roofing, and fiberglass roofing. The services offered by these professionals are usually grouped into three main categories, namely:

  • New roof installations
  • Roof repairs and replacements
  • Roof maintenance

However, even though professional roofing contractors in the district generally offer a wide range of services, you should always confirm that your preferred roofer offers services that align with your specific roofing requirements. This is necessary to prevent misunderstandings with your roofing contractor after your project commences and ensure that the project is completed to your satisfaction.

Below are price ranges for common roofing services offered by professional roofing contractors in Washington, D.C. Note that factors like the complexity of the job, the contractor's local reputation, and your location within the district will decide the actual cost of these services.

Estimates based on task:

Asphalt shingle roof installation (per 100 square feet)
$224 - $364
Flat roof installation (per 100 square feet)
$182 - $301
Slate roof installation (per 100 square feet)
$1,015 - $2,520
Tile roof installation (per 100 square feet)
$1,050 - $1,680
Wood shake roof installation (per 100 square feet)
$735 - $966
Metal roof installation
$1,043 - $1,365
Metal roof painting (per 100 square feet)
$2.75 - $3.20
Roof cleaning (per visit, for a typical two-story house)
$474 - $617
Roof heating cable installation (per linear foot of eave)
$44 - $54
Roof inspection (per visit, for a two-story home with a typical roofline)
$245 - $420
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Estimates based on roof pitch (per square feet):

Flat roof replacement
$3 - $8
Low-slope roof replacement
$3 - $8
Conventional slope roof replacement
$3 - $10
Steep slope roof replacement
$3.50 - $15
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Estimates for roof repair/replacement based on roofing material (per square feet):

Asphalt shingle
$4 - $10
Vinyl (PVC)
$4 - $12
$4 - $12
$4.50 - $15
Concrete Tile
$4 - $25
$4 - $30
$5 - $15
Architectural shingles
$5 - $15
$7 - $15
$8 - $25
$10 - $30
$10 - $40
$10 - $30
$15 - $30
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Estimates for roof repair/replacement based on shape (per square feet):

$3 - $10
$3 - $10
$3 - $10
$3 - $10
$4 - $12
$5 - $15
$5 - $25
$8 - $25
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Do You Carry the Necessary Insurance Policy for Roofing Companies in Washington, D.C.?

Per the requirements of the DC Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA), roofers that wish to operate in Washington D.C. have to comply with the following insurance requirements:

  • Roofers licensed as General Contractors/Construction Managers must maintain a minimum liability insurance coverage of between $500,000 and $2,500,000 per occurrence, depending on their license class
  • Roofers licensed as Home Improvement Contractors must maintain a minimum liability insurance coverage of $50,000 for bodily injury or death per person in any single accident, $100,000 in the aggregate for more than one person in any single accident, and $10,000 for property damage in any single accident. Roofers under this licensing category must also post a surety bond of $25,000

Given the highly hazardous nature of the roofing industry, it is crucial to ensure that the roofers handling your roofing projects are properly insured. According to data published by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, 88 fatal and 1,960 non-fatal work-related injuries were estimated to have occurred amongst roofers in 2020 alone. By making sure that your roofer is insured, you avoid the financial and legal liabilities typically associated with these injuries and other detrimental events like property damage and contractor errors if they should occur during your roofing project.

As such, always request proof of insurance, and bonding, where applicable, from your intended roofer and authenticate this proof with the appropriate insurance and bond provider. You can also contact the DCRA at (202) 442-4400 for more information on its insurance and bonding requirements for roofers operating in Washington, D.C.

How to File a Complaint Against a Bad Roofer in Washington, D.C.

The Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia (OAG) is the primary consumer protection agency in Washington, D.C.; complaints against bad roofers in the district can be filed with this office.

Consumer complaints in Washington D.C. have steadily increased in recent years, with the OAG receiving more than 2,500 complaints in 2021 alone, representing a 70 percent increase over the previous two years. According to this office, the majority of complaints that it received during this period stemmed from shoddy and improper home improvement and contracting services. To this end, when searching for roofing services in Washington, D.C., you should consider taking the following measures to ensure that you end up with a legitimate roofer who will get the job done satisfactorily:

  • Be wary of unsolicited roofers, especially ones that show up immediately after a disaster.
  • Utilize platforms like the DCRA's Find a Contractor portal, the National Roofing Contractors Association's Member Directory, and the Better Business Bureau website to search for reputable roofers in the district. You can also reach out to trusted friends and relatives to get referrals to roofers.
  • Be wary of roofers who try to pressure or scare you into making on-the-spot decisions.
  • Get and compare rates for your intended roofing project from at least three roofers.
  • Always confirm your roofer's licensing status before you reach any final hiring arrangements with them. You can do this online or by calling (202) 442-4400.
  • Do not pay the full cost of your project upfront, and be wary of roofers who ask you to do this. If you have to make an advance payment, ensure that the sum does not exceed 30 percent of the project's total value.
  • Request references from your preferred roofer and check these references
  • Make sure that your roofer is properly insured and bonded where applicable
  • Insist on getting a written contract for the roofing project before any work commences and review this contract properly before signing it

If you suspect that you are dealing with a fraudulent roofer in Washington D.C. or if you end up a victim of their deceptive and unfair business practices, you can file a complaint with the Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia by calling (202) 442-9828. Consumer complaints can also be filed with this office online, via email, or by texting the word "complaint" to (202) 738-5212 and following the guided prompts.

Consumer-related matters concerning roofing contractors that involve a total of $250 or more can also be reported to the DC Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs (DCRA) by filing a Consumer Protection Complaint Request online.

You can also take further action against bad roofers in Washington, D.C., by filing a lawsuit with the District of Columbia Court. Note that it is always in your best interest to get legal advice before going the court route. You can utilize the resources provided by the DC Bar on its Hiring a Lawyer webpage to get recommendations on licensed attorneys in the district that you can consult with to get proper legal advice.