What to look for in a commercial roof contractor

If you own or manage a commercial building and are looking to hire a commercial roofing company, you may not know what to look for. In the state of Oklahoma, there’s one requirement that’s pretty straightforward: They need to be licensed specifically for commercial work.

Technically, it’s not a license, but a registration. But even the Oklahoma Construction Industries Board (CIB) refers to it both as a registration number and as a license. In reality, the commercial registration is an endorsement added to your residential roofing registration.

Getting the license

A few years back, the state of Oklahoma started requiring a license specifically for commercial roofing. Residential roofers do not have to have a license, but commercial roofers do. The owner of a commercial roofing company has to take a test and pass it before their company can do commercial roofing work.

And the test is challenging. I’ve had a real estate license, a securities license, and several others. This was by far the most difficult test! It was harder than the insurance adjusting test!

I know another commercial roofer who has been doing this for decades. He’s taken the written test multiple times and still hasn’t passed.

Enforcing the license

Originally in Oklahoma, they were requiring every individual in the company to have the license. In 2018, they realized that was kind of crazy, so now only the owner has to be licensed. If the owner has a license, they can now hire employees and subcontractors under their license.

When you hire someone to work on your commercial building, there’s usually someone in your town in charge of code enforcement. They check which contractors have the proper licenses and which ones don’t.

And that person has the ability to shut your project down!

Of course, some cities require a permit and some don’t, so enforcement varies from town to town. But do you really want to risk your project being shut down because your roofer isn’t licensed?

Checking if a company has a license

How can you tell ahead of time if your commercial roofer has the required license?

Well, every roofing company has to have their CIB registration number on all their marketing materials. So if you get the business card of a roofer or visit their website, it should be pretty easy to find their CIB number.

Then you can visit the Roofing Registration Search, search for the business you’re hiring, and check if the Commercial column says Valid or None.

If you’re looking for a commercial roofing contractor, we would be happy to talk with you and see if we might be a good fit. Contact us to have a conversation.

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