One of the most burning investments that a homeowner can make is the purchase of a new roof. Whether you are research to sell or simply beautify your home, an old roof is not just an eyesore, it should actually lower the value of your home. And an old roof spells trouble the longer you put off the initial investment. You can become plagued with leaks, which will need patching, and who wants a house with a patchwork roof? You may have 'curb appeal' with your landscaping, a lovely facade, and a magnificent entry, but you cannot disguise an old shabby roof. Perhaps it is time to plan for a new one.
Never forget that building codes may dictate the kind of roofing material you can use. If you live in an historic district, you can be limited to the original roofing material used when the house was built. If you live in a planned community, you can be limited to material that matches the other houses in your development. Make certain that you choose a reputable roofer who follows building code requirements, or it could cost you dearly in the future.
Every building you see has a roof. Usual sense tells us that we want a roof that will not just last a long time, but won't cost an arm or a leg to install. Roofing materials and installation procedures are sometimes quite controversial, with one person saying that what they use is the best, and another saying they have nothing but trouble with that type of material. A lot of this depends greatly your locale. Much of it, however, lies in the well preparedise and skill of the roofing contractor who does the job for you. In the roofing industry, many roofers are sub-contractors of big builders. These sub-contractors usually use unskilled labor to keep the job cost down, and if so, you end up with an inferior roof.
Things to Consider Before Starting a Roofing Project
A brand New asphalt roof should last up to 25 years. Cedar shingles have a similar length or life. Wood shakes can last longer, from 25 to 75 years. Steel roofing will last 20 to 50 years and usually comes with a lifetime guarantee. Clay and slate can last for 50 to 100 years. , remember the need of frequent repairs, and the ease or pain with which those repairs can be made. Asphalt might not last forever, but it is quite easy to repair. And a tin roof, properly maintained, will last well over 100 year
Asphalt shingles are the most inexpensive, at $25 to $30 per 100 square feet, with installation at a rate of $36. Wood shakes or shingles cost $100 to $165, with installation at a good $75. Clay tile is $300 or more, and installation cost is easily $140. Standing-seam steel roofing is not cheap at $250 to $275 for materials and $105, for labor, per 100 square feet. Slate, the most expensive, can run you up to $550 per 100 square feet, and a pricey $145 for installation. You would be smart to consider the frequency of repair if a shingle should break. In addition consider your area. If you experience ground shifts or earthquakes, you might want to select a material that is more resilient, or if you have lots of rain, you’ll want to choose the material least likely to leak.
Always get no less than three guesses from three different contractors. More is preferable. Always use a licensed contractor, and insist on references. Get everything in writing! Spell it out, in detail. Do not use a contractor who provides you a "good deal" and who has no track history. Do a background check, and check around for satisfied customers. A reputable contractor will happyly give you a list of customers who will joyfully brag about his or her work. That's how reputations grow.
Warning: Do not pay in advance if you can at all avoid it. If you must pay ahead, hold something back - a 5 percent minimum, more if you can. The contractor is not your friend. He or she is in business to earn money, and you must always be pleasantly, yet firmly, in charge.
Use wisdom and do your research. This is one of the most expensive home improvements that you can ever make, outside of building on a new addition. With research and a great deal of information, this can also be one of your best investments. Never forget it's your money, so make sure to make every dollar count.