“When do I need a new roof?” is one of the most frequent questions we hear.
A roof is always there for you — until it isn’t. Whether you’ve owned your home for one year or many, you may rarely think about the roof and when it needs to be fixed or replaced. Unless there is a hurricane or strong storm, most North Carolina residents don’t need to worry often about their roof. But it will need to be replaced at some point.
How long do roofs last?
When you need a new roof depends on the type of roof on your home.
“How much does a roof cost?” is a little like asking, “How much does a car cost?” Just as the cost of a car depends on the make, the model, and the options, the price of a roof depends on the make, the model, and the options plus one other significant factor — size.
When you know it’s time for a new roof, it’s natural for a homeowner to wonder what they should expect to pay for roof repair or replacement. While we can’t guess in a blog post what your home’s roof will cost, we can break down how we get a price to help guide you as you seek roof replacement quotes.
Here are the essential factors determining the cost of the roof, which are generally listed in order of importance:
Roof Type and Material
There is a wide range of roof coverings: asphalt shingles, membranes and asphalt products for low sloped roofs, metal, slate, wood shake, terracotta tile, and composite/synthetic products. Companies are developing new materials every year.
Asphalt shingles are usually the least expensive roof covering and tend to be the most common. Asphalt shingles range from a standard 3-tab shingle to higher-end products that mimic the look of slate or wood shake. Costs can vary from about $2.50 per square foot to $6 per square foot. Keep in mind the square footage of your house or building is not the same as the square footage of your roof. (Keep reading for more on that.)
Metal roofing is more expensive than asphalt. Costs can range from $5 or $6 per square foot for an exposed-fastener steel roof to $12 per square foot for a standing-seam aluminum roof. Products such as copper or zinc can go as high as $25 per square foot.
Composites/synthetics are products that look like slate or wood shake. They range in cost from around $9/sf to $15/sf. Slate, terracotta tile, concrete tile, and wood shake are all higher-end products with prices ranging from $12/sf to $25/sf.
Naturally, the cost of your roof depends significantly on the size of your roof, and you no doubt noticed those prices are by the square foot. Large houses can have massive roofs and really big price tags while, of course, smaller homes will cost less. But the size of your roof is not as simple as basing the square footage of your roof on the square footage of your house.
A 2,000-square-foot single-story ranch home will have a 2,000-square-foot roof footprint. However, a 2,000-square-foot two-story colonial house will have a 1,000-square-foot roof. If your house is two stories, you might think it’s as easy as taking just half. But you might need to factor in covered areas not heated, such as garages, carports, porches, or breezeways. Your roof may have an overhang of one to three feet.
Another factor in determining the size of your roof is the roof slope or pitch. A gentle slope, (one you could comfortably walk on) may only add 5 percent to the size, whereas a steep angle can add 40 or 50 percent to the square footage of the roof. Steeper roofs are more challenging to work on, which adds to the labor cost.
Some roof styles are straightforward, with a rectangle on the front and a rectangle on the back. Others are more “cut-up” with varying angles and pitches and numerous faces. Complex roof styles are more difficult to work on, but also carry a higher waste factor — thus requiring more material.
Other factors that affect the cost of a new roof include:
If you’re ready to get an estimate for your roof replacement, contact us and we’ll provide a quote.