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Posted by McElroy Metal ● Jan 23, 2024 8:00 AM

The Cost of Roof Replacement: Budgeting

You don’t have to be a construction estimator to know that a roof replacement is a big investment. It’s usually something we need to do rather than choose to do, and money is always a factor when we’re planning this kind of project.

roof-replacement-costEven if you’d rather spend your money on something else, at some point, your roof will probably be at the top of your to-do list. Nearly every kind of roof will eventually need to be replaced, so let’s take a closer look at the financial side of roof replacement, what you need to consider, and how you might be able to soften the blow.

Short and Long-term Financial Implications of Roof Replacement

If you’ve been doing regular maintenance and repairs on your roof, you might still be surprised that your roof needs to be replaced. After all, when you’re doing what’s necessary to keep something in good condition, you never want to think that it will eventually wear out anyway.

However, your roof is a lot like your car. Even if you get the oil changed on schedule and have it serviced regularly, eventually, things will start to wear out. Wear and tear is cumulative, and often, when it affects things like cars and roofs, things can go from old but in good condition to urgently needing replacement very quickly.

Maintaining and repairing your roof will certainly extend its lifespan, but at some point, it will reach the point where it just can’t be repaired anymore and needs to be replaced.

In the short term, a roof replacement is a big expense and one that we’re never really ready for, but in the long term, having your roof replaced will also save you money.

First, you’ll spend less on routine repairs and maintenance when you have a new roof. Then, there’s the fact that you will be avoiding secondary damage that might occur if your roof is leaking.

Finally, a new roof will actually add value to your home, so whether you’re planning to sell or just want to build equity, it will put money in your pocket.

On the other hand, not replacing a roof when necessary could result in serious structural damage to your home, lower the value of the property, and lead to loss or damage of items inside your home.

blog.mcelroymetal.comhs-fshubfsPhoto GalleryResidential ApplicationsResidence Stillman Valley, ILHidden Costs of Roof Replacement

Even if you have no roofing knowledge, you probably already know that roof replacements usually cost thousands of dollars and that the cost increases with the size of the home and the type of roofing you choose.

However, you might not know that the roof replacement costs don’t always end with the roof itself. In fact, there are several things that could increase the cost of the project, such as:

  • Structural changes or repairs that might be required during the course of the roof replacement project
  • Replacement of underlayment if the existing product is old or damaged
  • Flashings, gutters, snow guards, and other roof-related items that might need to be replaced
  • Applying for permits and complying with other regulations
  • Disposal of old roof materials
  • Rental, delivering, and offloading equipment, especially if you are self-installing your new roof

There are a few ways to minimize financial surprises when replacing your roof, though. One of the best is to ask professional roofing companies for comprehensive quotes and insist that they visit your property and inspect your roof before quoting. This will help to ensure that they identify any hidden or not-so-obvious problems your roof might have and include them in their quote.

Even with a professional roof replacement quote and a site inspection, there’s always a good chance that there might be surprises during the project. So, make sure you set aside 10 to 20% of the project cost for contingencies. If you don’t need to use it for your roof, it will feel like a saving, but if you do, you’ll be very glad you don’t have to try and find the extra money.

Financing, Insurance, and More

In a perfect world, you would have been saving a little money every year for your roof replacement, so when it eventually needed to happen, you’d have the money in the bank.

But very few of us live in a perfect world, and most of us aren’t expecting a big expense like roof replacement when it happens. Fortunately, a few options exist to finance this kind of project on your home.

If you need to replace your roof because it was damaged by a storm or a falling tree, your first stop should be your homeowner’s insurance policy to see if it covers your particular type of damage. This kind of mechanical damage to your roof is often covered as part of your policy, and that might mean all you need to pay is the deductible.

If you have equity built up in your home, you might be able to access that through your existing mortgage or by getting another mortgage on your home. Your bank and mortgage broker should be able to explain the options and what each one will cost you upfront and over time.

A line of credit, personal loan, or credit card might be options to finance a replacement roof.

Finally, some larger roofing companies might already have financing deals with various loan companies and credit card providers, so they might be able to arrange the financing you need through their existing network.

lower-utility-costWhat Affects the Cost of Roof Replacement?

The last thing you need to know about the financial aspects of roof replacement is that several things might increase or decrease the project's cost. These include:

  • The size of the contractor you choose – larger contractors have higher overhead costs, so they might charge more for smaller projects, but they might also be able to access better material pricing – so ask a variety of roofing contractors of all sizes to price your project before you decide
  • The type of material you choose for your roof replacement project – different materials have different upfront and lifetime costs – make sure you consider a variety of roof materials and choose the one that makes the most financial sense
  • The time of year – many roofing companies are much busier at certain times of the year, so they might charge a premium to get your project done, and you might wait a lot longer to get your new roof – if you have the option, try to plan your roof replacement for the slower season
  • Your roof itself – if your roof is very large or very complex, it will cost more – larger roofs require more materials, but complex roofs often require more labor and have more material waste

You can also ask your roofing contractor if you can do anything to lower the project cost. Taking care of permit applications or arranging your own waste bin and demolition dump runs are just a few things that might affect the cost of your project.

Start Planning Early

As you can see, there are plenty of financial decisions to be made when you’re thinking about replacing your roof, and those aren’t the kind of decisions you want to rush into.

Most types of roofing have an expected lifespan, so while each home will be different, you can roughly predict when you might need to start thinking about getting a new roof.

Start planning for your roof replacement a few years before you think you will need to have the work done. Ask the contractor or company that does your roof maintenance to advise you about the overall condition of your roof when they visit your property, or hire a roof inspector to get an unbiased professional opinion.

Spend some time thinking about what kind of roofing material you might like to have installed when you replace your current roof, and start gathering information about the cost of materials and labor to get the job done.

You could even ask local roofers the best time to get a roof replacement and keep that in mind for future inquiries.

You definitely don’t need to rush into anything or replace your roof before it’s necessary, but a little advance planning can make things a lot easier when your roof does need to be replaced, and since we all know that roofs do eventually need to be replaced, you can plan ahead.

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Learn everything you need to know about Residential Metal Roofing. Check out our metal roofing resources for inspiration and answers to your questions.

About McElroy Metal

Since 1963, McElroy Metal has served the construction industry with quality products and excellent customer service. The employee-owned components manufacturer is headquartered in Bossier City, La., and has 14 manufacturing facilities across the United States. Quality, service and performance have been the cornerstone of McElroy Metal’s business philosophy and have contributed to the success of the company through the years. As a preferred service provider, these values will continue to be at the forefront of McElroy Metal’s model along with a strong focus on the customer.

Topics: Roof Replacement

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