The cost of a new roof is, without-a-doubt, our most frequently asked question.
“I just need a price for a new roof on a 2,000 square foot home.”
“How much does a new roof cost?”
“Can you provide a quote for roof replacement without performing an inspection?”
All roofing companies are familiar with these questions. As a consumer, it makes sense, right? For most things, we can ask and receive a clear answer about the cost of something we want to purchase. However, not all roofs are made equal so providing a quote for a roof replacement is actually much more complicated than that. The cost of a roof depends on a few different factors – roofing material, roof age, roof pitch, and more. When your local roofing contractor says they need to inspect the roof in person, they are doing their due diligence to provide you with an accurate estimate that takes into account the uniqueness of your home. Trust us, you’ll prefer it that way.
Roof Replacement Cost
Before we start, let’s clear up a roofing term that will help you in your search for finding quotes for a roof replacement. Roofing prices are quoted as a “per square” price. This breaks 100 square feet of your roof (a 10-by-10-foot area) into one roofing square. For example, if your roof measures at 3,000 square feet, it would be priced at 30 squares. Remember, the square footage of your home does not equate to the size of your roof. For most roofing contractors, the price per square will include any roofing material, supplies, labor, permits, inspection fees, and waste removal. Let’s break a few of those items down so you understand how they impact your roof replacement quote.
Cost of Roofing Materials
One of the first things that determine new roof cost is the type of roofing material that will be used. Do you have a specialty roofing material such as a slate roof? Will you be sticking with standard asphalt shingle roofing? How about upgrading to metal? Each of those materials comes at a very different cost. You can learn more about shingle roof versus metal roof in our recent posts. Additionally, given the damage or previous water intrusion, the wood decking underneath your shingles can be rotten and will need to be replaced for an additional charge. Finally, your unique roof may need to be upgraded if there has been any changes to the local building codes since the house was constructed. It’s important you choose the right roofing contractor who has experience in different roofing materials, roof insurance claims, and local building code requirements.
Roof Pitch & Roof Complexity
If every roof was of simple design, with no especially-steep pitches, finding the cost of a new roof would be much easier. That’s just not how it is, though. When pricing a roof there is special consideration for any areas that have a steep slope. Roofs with high pitches are more difficult and dangerous to work on and, with great risk, comes great responsibility – even financially. The new roof price also changes depending on the complexity of your roof – numerous level changes and multiple hips and valleys will impact the cost of a new roof.
If you’re unfamiliar with these areas of your roofing system, check out our Roofing Terms & FAQ’s guide for detailed definitions.
We do not recommend shingling over existing shingle, but rather removing it. Most contractors do, and most manufacturers require this if they will offer a warranty on your roof. Removing an old roof can cost between $3 – $10 per square foot. Some contractors build roof removal into their cost of a new roof but others don’t – it’s important to discuss this with your local roofing experts as they put together your estimate for a roof replacement.
Roof Underlayment Types
It’s a roofing material you don’t see very often, but your choice on roof underlayment plays a big role in the cost of a new roof. Roof underlayment is a water-resistant or waterproof barrier material that is installed directly onto your roof decking, underneath all other roofing material, including shingle. It serves as an added protection from severe weather. There are three major types of roofing underlayment:
A. Asphalt-Saturated Felt – commonly referred to as “felt paper” or “tar paper,” roofing felt is made of varying blends of plant fibers, polyester, bitumen or asphalt. It’s a water-resistant barrier.
B. Non-Bitumen Synthetic Underlayment (a.k.a. Synthetic Underlayment) – A preferred roofing underlayment option by most roofing contractors, synthetic underlayment has a basemat that is saturated in asphalt. The addition of fiberglass gives synthetic products superior tear resistance and stability. It’s a water-resistant barrier.
C. Rubberized Asphalt Underlayment – The more expensive option of rubberized asphalt underlayment has a higher percentage of asphalt and rubber polymers which makes it waterproof. This is a recommended roof underlayment for areas that experience heavy snowfall. It should be added around valleys and roof penetrations since these areas are most prone to being the source of roof leaks.
If you’re in the process of a roof insurance claim, be sure to speak to your contractor about the underlayment that your insurance company approves for your roof replacement.
Skylights & Roof Vents
Shopping for the cost of a new roof, you should remember the uniqueness of your home that we mentioned earlier. Replacing a roof is more than just tearing off shingles and replacing them with new ones. There are often roof vents such as plumbing vents, attic vents, and goosenecks that need to be considered in the quote for your roof. The replacement of these items depends on their condition which is impossible to know without a full-service roof inspection by a certified, local roofer company. Pricing for replacing these items can vary from contractor to contractor.
What is the cost of a new roof?
In conclusion, the cost of a new roof varies on a variety of those factors listed above. It’s essential to remember the price “per square,” and review the estimates you receive to make sure they include the exact same items. Like skydiving, sometimes the cheapest cost for a new roof isn’t the best cost for a new roof. Quality matters to the life expectancy of your new roof and quality is what the experts here at Signature Exteriors are known for. Whoever you choose to estimate the new roof cost, please use the information in our article to be sure you’re asking the right questions and develop an understanding of what you’re paying for.