Few would argue that it’s more satisfying to invest money in a kitchen, bath, or basement remodel than something more mechanical. But as a roof ages, repairing or replacing becomes inevitable. A roof shelters your entire house and protects it from the elements, so its integrity isn’t something to scrimp on. Beside its function, a roof’s physical condition affects the exterior aesthetics of the home.

Because costs vary so much by the current condition of a roof, the size, type, and the state one lives in, it’s impossible to make a blanket estimate on the cost of a new roof. The average cost overall is usually between $7000 and $14,000 for labor and materials, though could be much higher. Here are the factors that will weigh into the costs of a roof replacement.

Roof size

Obviously the bigger the surface area of a roof, the more it will cost to replace. Sizing for roofs isn’t measured in simple square feet. Instead, roofing “squares,” which equal 100 square feet, are used. The typical 2,200 sq. ft. home has a roof that comprises about 17 squares.

Pitch and Slope

The steepness of a roof can add to the cost of labor. Obviously, it’s much harder to work safely on removal and replacement on a roof that’s very steep. Roof pitch tells the number of inches a roof rises for every foot of depth as it’s measured toward the peak. Ranch homes normally have a 4/12 pitch, while a tutor style home has 8/12 to 12/14, the latter being the most challenging.

Old Roof Removal

You or previous owners may have shingled over another layer in earlier years. The more layers that must be removed for replacement, the higher the labor cost. A single layer of shingle might cost $2,550 while double or triple layers might cost an additional $3,000. Note that removal is also more costly on a steeper roof.

Roofing Material

The most common roof materials are asphalt, metal, copper, wood, slate, and tile. The material you choose will have a major effect on cost. Here are average prices for each kind of shingle based on the average home that requires 17 squares of material:

∙ Asphalt: $2,500
∙ Metal: $2,550 to $27,000, depending on type
∙ Wood (Cedar): $7,650 to $15,000
∙ Tile: $6,800 to $17,000, depending on type
∙ Slate: $6,545 to $27,000
∙ Copper: $25,000 and up

Installation Method

Note that whatever material you use may come with a variety of options for installation that affect cost. For example, metal rooves have different techniques for fastening that vary in price.

Special Features

Chimneys, skylights, pipes, turrets, dormers, or any ornamental structures that must be covered, worked around, or sealed in the replacement process will add to the labor cost. The higher the complexity, the more expensive it will be.

Roof Accessibility

A difficult-to-reach roof will likely increase the cost of labor. Access could be affected by houses that tightly fit beside each other, trees, or other obstacles that make moving materials equipment up and down more complex and take more time and safety measures.

The Estimate

Your roof replacement estimate should contain all of the following:

∙ Step by step outline of the process
∙ 5-component list of replacements: underlayment, water and ice shield, starter shingles, asphalt shingles, and ridge capping
∙ Ventilation system (type, color, and quantity)
∙ Installation method
∙ Materials list and quantity
∙ Steps to protect home and surrounding property
∙ Dump and cleanup fees
∙ Warranty information
∙ Length of estimate validity
∙ Details on your right to back out of the contract
∙ Details on additional costs and fees

Every estimate should be calculated individually based on what you what done for your roof. Research reputable roofers in your area and spend the time to get several estimates for comparison. Roof replacement is a big financial endeavor, but a very necessary step to protecting your home and maintaining value.

Real Estate Term of the Week

Underlayment: A water-resistant or waterproof barrier material that is installed directly onto your roof deck. It is applied under all other roofing materials as an added layer of protection from severe weather.

Platinum Service Realty