You depend on your home’s roof to protect your house from damage. Luckily, they’re durable, lasting between 20 and 50 years depending on the type of materials used. But the time will come when you need to schedule a roof replacement.
Installing a new roof is a relatively simple process. But if you’ve never replaced your roof before, you likely aren’t sure what to expect.
Here are some of the key replacement roof basics you should familiarize yourself with ahead of time.
Always Work with a Professional Roofing Contractor
The best thing you can do is work with a licensed and insured roofing contractor. These professionals know how to install roofing materials the right way to prevent costly leaks and damage. Even better, they can inspect the underlying roof structure to make sure everything is in good shape.
If they notice anything out of place, they’ll be able to fix the damage quickly.
Installing a roof on your own or with the help of an inexperienced handyman almost guarantees that the project will cost more. Not only do you have to pay full retail price for the roofing materials, but you’ll also have to sacrifice a few days of your time to the project.
Assuming everything goes well and the roof installation gets done correctly, the manufacturer warranty won’t be in effect. Most manufacturers require that the materials get installed by a professional roofing contractor. If you do it yourself, you’ll miss out on the added protection the warranty provides.
It Pays to Get Quotes from Different Contractors
Roofers charge different rates for their services and what one company says will be an easy job, another might struggle to complete on-budget. That’s why you always need to shop around before choosing a roofing contractor.
Get written estimates from several companies and compare what they say. Remember, choosing the cheapest contractor isn’t always the best option. You want to choose a company that provides the most extensive services at a price that you can afford.
If you base your decision solely on price, you’ll often end up with sub-par roofing materials and experience roof maintenance issues down the road.
The Old Roof Should Always Get Removed
In most areas, you’re allowed to have two layers of asphalt shingles (the most common roofing material) in place. But that doesn’t mean you should ask your roofing contractor to install a new layer of roofing materials on top of the old ones.
The key to a long-lasting roof replacement is to completely remove the old materials first. This lets your contractor inspect the support structure for damage and makes it easy to take care of minor repairs that impact the structural integrity of your roof.
If a contractor tells you that installing a new layer of shingles is all you need to do, get a second opinion.
Quality Materials Are Worth the Investment
When it comes to roofing, you really do get what you pay for. Higher quality materials will cost more than low-grade products. But they’ll also last far longer and have fewer repair issues in the future.
Remember, you don’t have to stick with the same type of roofing materials you had previously. It’s possible to upgrade from shingles to metal roofs or to switch from expensive wooden shakes to affordable and durable asphalt shingles.
If you’re not sure what’s best for your home, don’t hesitate to ask. Roofers want to do what’s right for your house and can break down the costs of each material for you during the estimate.
Your HOA Will Have a Say
Homeowners who live in neighborhoods without homeowners’ associations (HOAs) can choose whatever roofing materials and colors they like. But if you live in a neighborhood with an HOA, you’ll need to discuss your roof replacement with them.
HOAs often like to keep the neighborhood’s aesthetics consistent. This means they have a set list of colors and roofing materials that they’ll approve for installation on your home.
If you choose a color or type of roofing that’s not on their approved list, you could violate their rules. At best, the violation will lead to a fine, but you may also get asked to remove the roofing materials completely, forcing you to effectively pay for two new roofs.
Before you decide on the materials, always doublecheck with your HOA. Choose materials that are in compliance with their regulations and you’ll be fine.
Replacements Aren’t Substitutes for Maintenance
New roofs often solve ongoing maintenance issues you’ve coped with for the last few years. But that doesn’t mean you’ll be able to forego roof maintenance after the new roof gets installed.
In fact, doing so can void your manufacturer’s warranty.
After you get your new roof, set up a regular maintenance plan with your contractor. This will help prevent the most extensive damage from happening in the first place.
You’ll also want to notify them of any issues, leaks, or missing roof materials as soon as you notice them. The sooner those minor problems get fixed, the better off your roof will be.
Expect the Work to Be Loud
Unfortunately, nearly all roof replacements are noisy. After all, your contractor has to remove the old materials and hammer the new ones into place.
If you’re at work during the day, this shouldn’t cause much disruption to your routine. But if you typically spend the day at home or work out of a home office, you may want to get away for a few days.
The same is true for your pets. Remember, animals are more sensitive to loud noises and the sounds of the roof replacement may scare them. It might be worth boarding your pets for a few days until work wraps up.
These Replacement Roof Basics Are Just the Beginning
Installing a new roof can be stressful. But once it’s done, your home will have a new layer of protection against the elements. These replacement roof basics will help you know what to expect from the process.
If you’re ready to get your new roof installed, don’t wait. Contact us today to schedule an estimate and let our team help you keep your home in great condition for years to come.