Why Choose J.C. Kaller Inc?

How to Choose a Contractor:

Repairing and replacing a roof (or other home improvements such as replacing windows, doors, etc.) is a big deal and you want to make sure that the contractor you choose is the right one for the job. So what are the right questions to ask and what information do you need? Our friends at CertainTeed thought about this and created a pamphlet on Choosing a Professional Roofer that we have reproduced in part below. We’ve included the answers as they apply to J.C. Kaller Inc where appropriate.

Projects like roofing, siding, windows, gutters, or other home improvements are things that you are probably not too concerned with until it becomes time to replace the roof, get new windows, etc. Once that time comes, there’s a lot to learn about which products to use and what procedures best meet your individual roofing needs. Therefore, it’s vital to know that you can rely on the contractor you choose to give you good advice about those products and procedures that may be new to you. The key is to find the right contractor for your job.

The questions Certainteed put together (listed below) are designed to help you determine the reliability, reputation, and experience of a contractor, as well as his dedication to providing you with the best roof system possible.

In order to make an informed decision, you need to do more than just look at the estimates and compare prices. Allow yourself about an hour and sit down with each contractor. You might speak with a salesperson or even the owner. Both of you need time to ask questions and explore the possibilities. You will be surprised at how many options you have.

Good contractors take pride in their work, and so should the salesperson representing the company. The salesperson should show enthusiasm and knowledge when discussing other jobs they have completed, displaying their involvement in the projects. A top-notch and professional home improvement contractor like J.C. Kaller Inc. will be more than happy to supply you with answers to these questions.

7 Questions to Ask Your Roofer:

1. What is the full name of the company?

JC Kaller Inc
Owner/President: Justin Kaller

2. Does the company carry insurance?

A contractor should carry comprehensive liability insurance and workmen’s compensation insurance to protect you in the event of a roofing accident. This can be verified by asking to see the contractor’s certificates of insurance (workmen’s compensation and liability). Let the contractor know you want current certificates sent to you by the insurer before the job is started. (some insurance requirements are regulated by the state of PA, see question 3 below..)

JC Kaller carries both General Liability and Workman’s Compensation Insurance.
Current certifications will be provided to customers with our proposal and prior to starting work.

Contractors may also carry other kinds of insurance including health, life, and auto insurance. Bland assurances of insurance coverage may refer to these. Don’t be confused. Ask for proof of general liability and workman’s compensation for roofing and other home improvement projects.

General Liability and Workman’s Compensation Insurance are required for Home Improvement Contractors in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

Be aware that if a worker is injured on your property, the homeowner might be held liable for all costs unless the employee is covered by workers’ compensation insurance. Hospital bills for serious accidents can be extraordinarily expensive.

Contractors who carry insurance and follow safety guidelines on fall prevention endure higher job overhead costs. These expenses could be the cause of price variations between contractors who follow the standards versus those who ignore them.

Uninsured contractors roofers who do not carry insurance will most likely be cheaper to hire as they do not have the large insurance premiums to pay. Workers’ compensation premiums can increase wage costs from about 20% to as much as 100% depending on the state.

There are a variety of reasons why full insurance may not be carried by a contractor, such as:

  • Not a full time contractor
  • Operates a partnership or self-employed without employees
  • New in the business
  • Can’t afford insurance premiums
  • Doesn’t stand behind work
3. Is the company a licensed or credentialed contractor?

Home Improvement Contractors are required to be registered in Pennsylvania under the PA Home Improvement Consumer Protection Act (“HICPA”) and in New Jersey under the Contractor’s Registration Act.

JC Kaller Inc is registered as a Home Improvement Contractor with the Commonwealth of PA. PA Contractor Registration PA183373

JC Kaller Inc also maintains registrations with local authorities in areas where we do work.

A contractor may also answer this question by telling you he has a business license. However, a business license is a tax requirement only and is not directly relevant to the contractor’s competence.

Several roofing manufacturers offer a variety of programs to professional contractors that establish their credentials as a knowledgeable roofing company. Homeowners can view a contractor’s credentials as another indicator of their degree of knowledge, professionalism, and dedication to the roofing trade.

JC Kaller Inc has top ratings and certifications from many manufacturers including: CertainTeed, GAF, Owens-Corning, Tampko, Hardee, Mastic, Crane, and Marvin. These certifications allow us to offer limited lifetime product warranties. We are also approved as a contractor by the PA Historical and Museum Commission (PHMC) and the Cedar Shake and Shingle Bureau.

4. How long has the company been in business?

JC Kaller Inc has been in the business since 2023 but contracting has been a Kaller Family tradition since 1939. JC Kaller is a third generation Contractor!

5. Will the company provide referrals or references from previous jobs?
  • Ask for photos of completed work, if available
  • Request a list of 5 names and phone numbers of recent customers (last 12 months). It is not necessary to check all 5, but you will be able to pick randomly from the list those you do call.

JC Kaller will be happy to provide you with a list of current references. You can also learn about some of our projects and view photos in our portfolio and read reviews from some of our customers. Additionally, JC Kaller has earned the highest ratings of many of the suppliers we work with based in large part on customer satisfaction.

6. What is the company’s workmanship warranty?

Typically, contractor workmanship warranties are for one year or more. Longer warranties are not necessarily more valuable than shorter warranties. The length of the warranty is less important than the intent and ability of the roofer to stand behind his warranty. That is best evaluated using customer referrals. Ask customers specifically for information about these four things:

  • Was work performed on a timely basis?
  • Was the contractor responsive when asked for information and changes?
  • Did the contractor act as if he cared about the customer’s interests?
  • Would you call the company trustworthy?

The roofer will warrant his workmanship. The manufacturer, on the other hand, warranties the roofing material against defects in manufacturing. Thus, two warranties will cover the shingle roof system. Understand them both. Ask for a copy of the manufacturer’s warranty pertaining to the specific shingle products you are considering.

Usually, problems of either workmanship or material show up very quickly. Therefore, the near-term warranty given by the contractor or manufacturer is more important than the warranty coverage during the later years of the warranty. Even if problems of workmanship arise after the workmanship warranty has lapsed, a reliable contractor usually will want to stand behind his work.

JC Kaller Inc. warrants that the work as specified will be performed in a professional and workmanlike manner. Except for minor repairs, JC Kaller Inc. fully warrants all work to perform as intended for a period of one year from the date of installation and will pass on all long term warranties from the manufacturer.

7. What is the company’s track record for solving customer complaints?

Try to find out how your contractor handles problems when they do arise. Request a referral from a job that involved a complaint.

Ask the contractor if he has ever lost a job-related court case.

JC Kaller has never had or lost a job-related lawsuit.

Ask if his contractor’s license has ever been suspended and why.

JC Kaller Inc has never had a license suspended.

Find out if any complaints have been filed against the contractors who you have interviewed. Many contractors in business for any length of time have been involved in a dispute. Ask how the dispute was resolved, to test your contractor’s reputation.

Be aware of details

Most contracts for roofing work are simple and straightforward. The larger or more experienced contractors may have longer, more detailed contracts. Regardless of the form of the agreement, you should read all of the specific items in the contract carefully. Misunderstandings are more often the cause of contract disagreement rather than actual dishonesty or incompetence.

It is in your interest that certain items which are important to you be stated in writing in the contract. The following are some of the basics that should be covered.

Compliance with local codes and ordinances

Will they be observed? Are permit costs included? Who will obtain the permit?What about provisions for posting zoning notices? Have inspections been planned?

JC Kaller is registered with PA and with local authorities where we do work. We are very familiar with local codes and ordinances and our work is done in accordance with these rules. JC Kaller will coordinate with all code enforcement and other local authorities when necessary. This would include obtaining permits, posting notices where necessary and scheduling inspections when necessary or required. Costs for permits, inspections, etc. are not included as part of our proposal but may be paid directly by the customer or billed separately.

Product Choices

Have you been offered a choice of good, better, and best shingles? Are they identified by brand and manufacturer name? Is there a clear reference to the warranty which will cover the shingles to be applied? Is the manufacturer’s name for the color of the shingle you are buying stated in the contract? Do you understand the difference in the aesthetics from one shingle to another (including not only color but also texture, style, construction, reinforcement, and UL ratings)?

JC Kaller will usually suggest several options to you and will include those you are interested in with your proposal.


Start and stop dates are difficult to pin down due to the unpredictability of the weather, but you can control exceptions. For instance, negotiate a “no-later-than” clause. Be reasonable, but do make it clear that these terms will be enforced if necessary.

If early completion is important, offer an award for completion by an early date in addition to a no-later-than clause.

NOTE PA HICPA requires that the contract contain the approximate starting date and completion date.

Right to Rescind

Pennsylvania and New Jersey both provide for a Right of Rescission on home improvement contracts within 3 business days of the date of signing.

(b) Right of rescission.–An individual signing a home improvement contract, except as provided in the emergency provisions of section 7 of the act of December 17, 1968 (P.L. 1224, No. 387)7 , known as the Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Law, shall be permitted to rescind the contract without penalty regardless of where the contract was signed, within three business days of the date of signing. If the homeowner cancels the job after the right-to-rescind period has elapsed, then the contractor may request a certain dollar or percentage value of the contract in return.

Manufacturer’s warranty specifications

Confirm that the agreement states that all workmanship will conform to the requirements of the manufacturer’s warranty and installation instructions. Take note that this includes ventilation requirements, fastener requirements, low slope installation terms and ice dam protection. All such terms are normally found on the shingle packaging, or will be found on manufacturer’s literature available from suppliers.

JC Kaller Inc has certifications from our major suppliers indicating that we have been trained in and follow proper installation procedures and all local codes.

Contractor’s workmanship warranty

Make sure this is clearly noted in the contract.

JC Kaller will provide a detailed proposal that will provide you with the all details of the work to be performed with options where applicable, and that meets or exceeds the manufacturer’s requirements for long-term warranties with specific details on products to be used and installation procedures.


Call for a daily cleanup of the premises. This becomes very important if shingle tear-off is necessary.

Payment Terms

Schedule, terms, and method of payment should be written out fully with no room for misunderstandings.

Preliminary Inspection

Finally, agree to an inspection before the job with the job supervisor. Establish the condition of the property before any work is done. Take special care to list the conditions of landscaping and equipment located under or near roof eaves. Do not be unreasonable on your own expectations. It is not possible to reroof a house without some damage to the landscaping. Discuss and agree on what is reasonable. Prepare a checklist as you go and co-sign it, indicating that both parties understand the present condition of the property. A thorough inspection after the job will determine if any valid property damage claims exist

Insider Tips

Understanding the contractor

This information from CertainTeed serves as a guide to shopping for a good contractor and negotiating a good contract. However, you should keep in mind that your contractor is also shopping. A contractor is shopping for good jobs that will make a fair profit and bring future referrals. Many contractors have had experiences with unreasonable or dishonest homeowners. Therefore, they look for warning signs of customer problems during the initial job interview. Show the contractor that you are an informed consumer who has both your and his best interests in mind.

Getting a roofing contractor to want your job

Many homeowners have been mystified by the seeming lack of interest and response from contractors when the receive a call for a job. Here’s how you can get a roofer to respond to your call:

  • When you call a roofer, tell them you are shopping around but are only interviewing three contractors – not 10.
  • Call contractors in the general vicinity. Roofers prefer to work close to home, just like everyone else.
  • Tell the contractor you call that you are not looking for the lowest bid, but rather the best value. Ask for a Good-Better-Best proposal
  • If you have seen work by a contractor in your neighborhood and you liked it, or if someone referred a contractor to you, call them. When you do, mention how you heard of them

By following these tips you can help a roofer determine that you are a good prospect and worth his effort.

Local and Trade Information

There are a number of organizations that you can contact when you need additional help or information about roofing. Unfortunately, it is not always possible to predict which will be the most useful in any given location.

We’d love to hear from you!