Rick Lewis, President & CEO of Fortis Warranty, gave host Tyler Kern an upfront and honest look at the state of roofing industry warranty agreements. Long-term warranty strategies seem to be the trend amongst industry competitors, according to Lewis.
“At least in the commercial roofing space, we’re seeing warranties upward of 30 years,” Lewis said. There are even some instances of longer terms. But as Lewis warned, the devil is in the details to understand what is in that warranty contract. Are there exceptions and exclusions that make that warranty not as valuable as first thought?
One type of warranty that feels like a freebie is the material-only warranty Lewis said is popular with many roofing manufacturers. This type of warranty may help the manufacturer get around UCC liabilities, but is it providing the buyer with the right protection level?
Lewis stressed the importance of understanding the roofing warranty document.
“That document is pretty critical from the standpoint of a consumer in terms of these commercial roofs. You do need to dig into the details of these one-to-three-page documents. What’s included in these pages are substantial advantages for the seller over the buyer of this product.”
What does Lewis think makes a difference for the commercial roofing industry? Fortis warranties do not include a UCC disclaimer requirement, which gives power back to the buyer. Fortis warranties contain limited exclusions compared with standard manufacturer’s warranties, and they are transferrable, which provides needed flexibility when a selling a building.