The roof on your house works hard to keep your home’s interior separate from the wild outdoors. It keeps you dry during rain and snow, gives you shade during sunny summer days, and prevents squirrels and other wildlife from becoming a part of your family unit. After decades of doing this, however, your roof needs to be replaced. In general, you should replace your roof every 30 to 40 years. If you know that your roof is approaching its 30th birthday, it’s the perfect time to start considering how you will pay for a new roof, which doesn’t come cheap. Let’s take a look at the most helpful tips for budgeting for a new roof for your house.
Know What Your New Roof Will Cost
The most important part of budgeting is knowing what amount of money you need to budget for. The average cost of a new roof can fall anywhere in the range of $5,000 to $10,000. Although these costs vary wildly, you can nail down the likely price of your roof by breaking the cost down into three categories. The first category is materials. The cost of your roof will depend on what types of shingles you use, protective coatings you add, and the underlayment and flashing you need. Asphalt shingles tend to be the most affordable option and the smaller your roof is, the less your materials will cost.
The second category is labor. You’ll have to pay skilled workers to remove your old roof and install the new one. With about 60% of the cost, labor will take up the majority of the budget for your new roof. The third category is disposal, as you will need to recycle or throw out your old roof materials once they’re removed.
By doing your homework on each of these categories and knowing the exact materials you will need to have installed, you can start conversations with contractors on an informed note. With these details in hand, you can keep estimates consistent and encourage competitive pricing between different contractors.
Ask for Free Estimates
The next step is to shop around for roofers. Get some recommendations from your friends and neighbors who have replaced their roofs recently and then ask a few of the roofing companies for free estimates. This will be where all of the homework you’ve done comes into play. You can let the roofers know the materials you would like to use and ask for their professional advice. Keep in mind that the estimates usually include labor and disposal costs, but it’s a good idea to clarify that with each roofer you speak with.
Before you commit to one roofer, get at least five estimates from different companies. This selection will allow you to choose a roofer who gives you a fair price and a high-quality job. Be wary of going with a company just because it has the lowest rate. Too often, low prices mean low-quality work. Remember to ensure that the roofer you choose offers a warranty on materials and installation and that they are properly licensed and insured before you sign any binding work contracts.
Unless you need a new roof immediately, take the time you need to save up some money after you get the estimates. Break out the calculator and determine how much you need to save every month in order to afford the roof replacement. If you want to do the roof replacement in two or three years, you’ll likely need to save about $300 to $400 every month for the replacement. If you want it done faster, you’ll have to sock away more money. Examine your future expenses and cut out any of them that are unnecessary, such as expensive vacations or pricey electronics.
If you’re handy and have the proper equipment, you could ask your contractor if you can remove your old roof yourself. This would help cut down on the costs of the replacement, although it means that you’ll have to arrange and pay for the disposal of the old materials on your own. Consider what method of saving and cost-cutting works for your family and commit to a plan so that you can get a new roof over your heads.
Having your roof replaced is a big project that comes with a big price. By starting to plan for this major expense years in advance, you won’t need to empty your savings account to replace a crumbling roof at the last minute.