Roof replacement projects require a substantial investment, no matter how large or small your home. It helps to understand all of the costs associated with the project, in order to make the most economical decision about materials, contractors and timing. Roofing costs vary from home to home, but you should consider a variety of common cost factors before making a final decision on this project.
Upfront Costs Weigh Heavy on Your Wallet
It’s no secret that replacing your roof can get expensive. In 2010 the national average cost for a roof replacement project on a midrange home ran around $19,0001. That represents a sizeable upfront cost for any family, and bumping up to a premium product will increase that cost. But longevity, maintenance expenses and overall value are all vital parts of the decision making process.
Spending more than $20,000 on a home improvement project that offers restricted warranties, limited value and lower quality should make you hesitate. Take the time to be sure your hard-earned money is being well spent, even if that does present a higher upfront bill.
The Value of Quality
Imagine your home without a roof. Think about the damage and discomfort that would result. Then consider the worry-free value of a quality roof made from dependable materials that will stand the test of time with little maintenance. That comparison illustrates the importance of your roof and the vital role that structure plays in creating a safe, comfortable home.
Roof leaks, damaged shingles and rotted sheathing can lead to excessive property damage and even dangerous conditions. It can be tempting to opt for the lowest priced conventional asphalt shingle when that product costs less than half the price of premium quality asphalt shingles2. But if that decision leaves you with a damaged, deteriorating roof in eight to ten years time, those savings disappear.
Due to superior design and stronger raw materials premium products can offer better warranties and improved performance. Sure they come with a higher price tag, but that money is well spent on reliability and longevity. Think about replacing your lower quality asphalt shingles in ten to twelve years-the typical lifespan of conventional asphalt shingles3. Does it make more sense to invest in an architectural shingle or metal roofing product that will last anywhere from 25 years and beyond? Punch the numbers and compare the lifetime cost of various roofing materials.
Maintenance Concerns and Utilities Costs
Most roofing materials are made for the low maintenance family. Homeowners generally want to have the roof put on and forget about it, taking advantage of the protection and security a quality roof offers. It does pay to consider exposure and layout of your roof, opting for materials that will help to keep maintenance down.
For instance, low slope roof designs require special materials and a unique installation procedure in order to maintain a watertight seal. And homes that experience heavy snowfalls or extremely high winds need to be fitted with roofing products that will stand up to nature, otherwise the maintenance requirements and costs can spiral quickly out of control.
It may not be a wise choice to install lightweight 3-tab shingles on a home in tornado alley. Every storm that travels through will incur maintenance costs for shingle replacement and patching. Likewise, light colored, reflective roofing materials are recommended for homes in hot, sunny areas of the country to cut down on the need for replacement or patching.
These options, like metal roofing or traditional clay tiles, will also help to reduce your cooling costs by reflecting heat away from your home, instead of absorbing it4. Metal roofing comes in a wide variety of styles and colors to complement any home, and delivers dependable performance for a lifetime. Depending on your location, preferences and initial budget it may make more sense to go with a metal roof, in terms of maintenance and utilities cost.
The upfront costs of roof replacement projects can be steep, but considering all of the cost factors is an important part of the process. Think about the value that quality products present and consider how alternatives can affect maintenance costs and utility bills. Make the best choice for your home and rest easy under your brand new roof.
1. Hanley Wood LLC, Remodeling Cost Vs Value Report 2009-2010, retrieved December 2011 from www.remodeling.hw.net.
2. Electrocspec Home Inspection Services, Home Improvement Costs for 2011, retrieved December 2011 from http://www.electrospec.ca/lib.repr.htm
3. All Points Home Inspections Inc., 2011 Home Improvement Estimating/Budgeting Guide and Life Expectancies, retrieved December 2011 from www.allpointshomeinspection.ca
4. Metal Roofing Alliance, Cool Metal Roofing – A Hot Idea, 1 September 2011, retrieved December 2011 from http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/cool-metal-roofinga-hot-idea-128891708.html