Homeowner or Contractor: Who Picks the Roof Color?
Homeowner Question: Since I’m not an expert in roofing, how much should I rely on my roofing contractor to help pick the color for my roof?
Chad’s Answer: Your roofing contractor plays a very important role in your roof replacement project. He or she is clearly the expert in properly installing the best performing roofing system for your budget.
After searching for the right roofing contractor for your project, you should pick the contractor you trust and with whom you feel most comfortable. Your roofer (and their crew) should treat you, your choices, and your home with respect. But does this mean you should rely on your roofing contractor to determine your final choice of product style and color?
Traditionally, it appears that roofing is an industry where the contractor has played a bigger role in helping to pick the shingle style and color for their customers than in other remodeling projects.
Does your tile installer pick your tile style and color for your job? Does your painter pick your paint color? So, while your roofing contractor is a roofing expert and can suggest products and colors for your roof, picking a roof color is always your decision, however inexperienced you may feel about it.
Your contractor might have lots of experience installing a few popular colors and might lean toward recommending these “safe” color choices for you. Just because everybody else is putting on a specific color doesn’t mean that it fits your house or personality. If you want something different, you need to have confidence in your choice and tell your contractor. You are, after all, the customer.
Here are some tips on what you can do to help yourself in this color choice:
- Be observant. Look online and in magazines to find images that inspire you and use them to create a mood board. This is just the idea collection phase of your project. Put all your probable choices on the table, and then from there start eliminating options. It’s best to do this before getting your contractor involved.
- Drive around your neighborhood to see exterior design palettes and roofing color choices other people have made. This will help you eliminate the styles and colors that you don’t like and more importantly, decide on which you do like. You may be lucky to see the homeowner in the yard to ask about their roof. If not, your contractor will be able to identify the product.
- Inform your roofing contractor which shingle styles and colors you prefer before they come to your home so they can bring the right sample boards for you to see, touch and feel.
- An experienced contractor has done many installations and has a reference list of addresses they could provide you. This allows you to see your color preference on an actual house, in its natural element.
- Use technology to ‘try on’ different roof styles and colors. Owens Corning has an online visualization tool called Design EyeQ® that’s free to use on their website. You can upload a picture of your house or pick one of the many house templates they already have loaded.
The key here is that yes, your contractor is an important factor in your new roof project, but you have the final voice on all decisions. Preparation on your part in identifying (and potentially eliminating) options prior to meeting with your contractor will save time and make for a better interaction. Remember, you are the customer—get what you what.
More from Chad Esslinger
Chad answers homeowners’ questions about their roofs and home exterior design.
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About Chad Esslinger Design
Chad Esslinger Design is a full-service design company focusing on residential interior design, decorating and remodeling. Chad loves partnering with homeowners to create beautiful and functional living spaces.
Chad Esslinger Design is committed to beautiful and creative design as well as unparalleled service. Chad believes that great design is contemporary but timeless, simple but elegant. The goal of any project is to create breathtaking beauty, innovative functionality, and a truly enjoyable design process. Learn more about Chad.