8 Ways to Reduce Your Roof Replacement Costs

A roof over your head is a great blessing. However, homeownership has its ups and downs. One of those low points might be shelling out thousands of dollars to replace the roof that has protected you from the elements for years.

new shingles

At some point, every roof will need to be replaced. It’s one of the many joys of homeownership. But, according to Angi, the average roof replacement cost ranges from $4,900 to $14,100. With a wide range of costs, you may be wondering how you can land the best deal.

The wide range of roof replacement costs is due to various factors such as style, location, the size of your roof, and the professional you hire.

Let’s take a closer look at how you can lower your overall costs and get ready for this significant undertaking.

When Should You Replace Your Roof

The first thing you need to do is determine whether you really need a new roof. A visible hole in your ceiling is not the sign you should be waiting for. If you get your roof replaced before it reaches the final stop of its useful life, then you could be avoiding potentially bigger problems down the road.

A few signs that your roof is ready to be replaced include:

  • Water leaking into the house
  • Cracked shingles
  • Missing shingles
  • Shingles that are curling on the edges.
  • “Bald spots” on your roof where granules are missing.
  • Overall signs of age on your roof.

Another tip is to be mindful of your neighbors. If your homes were built in the same time period, then you may notice many new roofs in the area. It could be a sign that the inevitable demise is coming to your roof soon.

As soon as you spot any of these signs, you should start considering a new roof. The longer you wait, the more damage might be done to the value of your home.

If you are considering selling your home, do not assume that you can pass along the failing roof to the new owner. Many buyers will shy away from aging roofs because it is an added cost that they can easily avoid by choosing another home to buy.

Make sure to regularly take a closer look at what is happening on your roof. You can help prolong the life of your roof by taking care of it. For example, removing moss and algae growing in your shingles can prevent damage to the shingles can help prevent damage to your roof’s shingles.

How much does a roof replacement cost?

As with all things in life, you have choices for your roof replacement. The total roof replacement cost will vary considerably based on your choices.

The costs stem from the materials, labor, and disposal of your old roofing materials.

In terms of material, you’ll need to choose between numerous shingles such as wood, clay, asphalt, solar, slate tiles, metal, and more. The material you choose may be based on cosmetic preference or necessary toughness to combat the elements of different locales. For example, in high wind areas of hurricane-prone Florida, homeowners are required to upgrade their roofing materials in hopes of withstanding potential hurricanes.

Asphalt shingles will most likely be your least expensive choice. An asphalt shingle roof costs about $1.20 to $4 per square foot to remove and replace an entire roof. Other materials, such as metal roofing, will generally cost at least twice as much per square foot. However, a new metal roof will likely save you money on homeowners insurance.

The cost to install 30-year architectural shingles is typically around $350 to $500 per square foot. And 50-year architectural shingles are even more expensive. Of course, they are stronger and last longer.

For labor, the size and construct of your roof will be a significant factor. If you have many peaks and ledges, expect your labor costs to be higher.

How to Reduce Your Roof Replacement Costs

You should expect to pay thousands of dollars for your roof repair. However, there are methods to lower your overall roof replacement cost.

1. Hire a Professional Roof Inspector

If you’ve noticed that your roof is looking a bit worse for wear, then you should call in an inspector. Although it can cost a few hundred dollars to hire an inspector, it might be well worth the cost.

An inspector will be able to tell you whether you really need a new roof. They might recommend a patch or suggest that you wait a few years before replacing the whole roof. Either way, it will give you a better understanding of the problem at hand.

2. Replace or Repair?

After receiving the inspection report recommendations, you’ll need to decide whether you will replace or repair the roof. It is a good idea to go with the guidance of the inspector. However, as the owner, you have the final say in this decision.

3. Check the Home Warranty

When was your roof last replaced? If the answer is recently, then the replacement might be under warranty.

If you recently bought the home, you should check through the closing paperwork. Home warranty information is often available in that fine print. If you can’t find the information, consider contacting the previous owners to see if they can provide you with that paperwork.

The home warranty may cover your replacement costs, so it is an option you should look into.

4. Decide What You Want

Before talking to a roofing contractor or salesman, make sure you know exactly what you want on your new roof. Take the time to research the different materials and options and choose the one that will work well for your area and your budget.

Build an understanding of the features of your roof. Is it huge? Does it have many peaks and ridges that will increase labor costs?

With this level of research, you’ll be able to discuss the details of contractor bids coherently. Doing this homework helps ensure that you are not being taken advantage of. You might not need the latest and greatest product that the salesman attempts to sell you.

5. Compare Bids

Once you have a good understanding of what you need, then it is time to call in the contractors. Obtain estimates from various roofing contractors. Each bid should include warranty information on both the materials and the installation.

Do not automatically jump for the lowest bid. If the bid is significantly lower, do more research before accepting that bid. Sometimes very low bids translate into lower quality work. Online reviews of a roofing company may help you find out if the company is worth doing business with.

Make sure to confirm that the bid is from a licensed contractor. You can contact your state consumer protection office to confirm this.

Trust your instincts when choosing a roofer. You want a roof that will last for years to come at an affordable price. Cutting corners now will only cause more problems down the line.

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6. Go the DIY Route

In the world of homeownership, there is always the option to fix the problem yourself. Although the roof is a high stake home repair, you may be able to do part of it yourself for a fraction of the cost.

The labor costs of a roof replacement can account for the bulk of the expense. Sometimes, a contractor will allow you to remove the old roofing material yourself to cut the total cost. However, you should only pursue this option if you have the proper tools and knowledge.

7. Check Your Insurance Policy

If you are like most Americans, you carry a homeowner’s insurance policy on your home. In that case, the policy might cover roof damages.

Most insurance policies will help cover some or all of your roof replacement. However, if the need for replacement is due to neglect, then it is unlikely they will assist you. Call your insurance provider to find out how much they might be willing to cover.

8. Ask for a Discount

Most roofers are at the whim of seasonal work. In the winter, work can dry up in some places. Whereas in the summer, they can’t work through the jobs fast enough.

If you are willing to wait for a convenient time for the roofing company, then ask if they will give you an off-season discount. For example, you could request a 10% discount to wait until they have a slow month for your roof repair.

It never hurts to ask; the worst thing they can say is ‘no.’

Bottom Line

Replacing a roof can be expensive. However, you can significantly reduce your roofing costs by being a savvy consumer that does their research. Then, make a plan to tackle your roofing problems and follow through.

Sarah Sharkey
Meet the author

Sarah Sharkey is a personal finance writer who enjoys helping people make better financial decisions. Sarah enjoys traveling, hiking and reading when she is not writing.