One of the biggest headaches a homeowner will have to face is a problem with your roof. If you do not keep it in good repair, your entire house will suffer. As they say, you could bring the walls down around you.
It is tempting to push roof repair and maintenance off because you fear it will result in needing a new roof. However, the fastest way to ensure you need to replace your homes roofing is to neglect minor repairs. If you know the condition of your roof and have some idea of when you may need a full replacement.
Keep the following in mind when talking to contractors and you will be ready to actively participate in developing your solution.
Your Roof’s Condition
Before determining whether you need to repair your roof or replace it is to consider its condition. The following are all parts of the condition you should consider.
Age of your Roof
The first is the age of your roof. Most roofs should last between 15 and 40 years when professionally installed. The quality of the shingles you use will help determine where in that range your roof will fall.
If you are nearing the end of the expected life of your home’s roofing, you may consider replacing it early if you have major repairs. This will help save you money in the long run, plus negate any possible complications from un-repaired damage.
You can always consider the condition to get a sense of what may be needed if you do not know the age.
Condition of the Shingles
The condition of your shingles will help you determine what course of action you should take. If they are not in good repair, they will not hold up during storms and will possibly allow leaking.
The following are things to look for that indicate your shingles are wearing out:
- Excessive mold or moss
- Many small sections missing
- Bald shingles
- If your shingles are curled or torn
Damage to the Roof
Next, you want to look for damage to your home’s roofing. A simple roof repair project can fix many types of damage to the roof, depending on its extent. There are many types of damage a roof may sustain over its life.
The first one most people think about is the damage caused by a storm, either through heavy rain, hail, or wind. This can cause shingles to blow off and tear, leaving your roof susceptible leaks. Hail that comes with these storms can also punch holes into shingles, depending on the size and wind strength.
Many people forget about the damage winter can cause roofs as well. The thawing of snow and ice and then refreezing can pry up shingles, making them much less effective.
What Else to Consider
The condition of your roof is a strong indicator of whether you need a new roof or can repair it. However, below are two more considerations to help you determine your next step.
Your Project Budget
First, what is your budget for bringing your roof back into working order? Consider that the average roof replacement in Michigan costs anywhere between $6,500-$12,000. Most small repair jobs will cost between $300-$3,000.
If you are nearing the end of your roof’s estimated life, you may be able to get by with some repairs for the short term. However, you may find yourself needing more repairs during the winter before you can replace your roof.
To be best suited for dealing with your roof, start planning a few years ahead of the minimum expected life of your roof. This allows you to proactively replace it before there is damage and avoids surprise costs.
Expectations of Project
Next, what are the expectations you have for the job? Do you want to be done with the project, and not have to think about it for several years? Are you planning to stay in your home for another 15-20 years? Are you planning to move soon and want to maintain the value of your property?
All of these are important considerations when determining whether to repair or replace your roof.
How To Select Your Roofing Contractor
Once you get a sense of what direction you may go, it is time to look for a roofing contractor. It is important to get an estimate from multiple contractors and do your homework. The last thing you want is to end up in a worse situation than you are in now. Here are some important things to check in the process.
- Is the contractor licensed, insured, and bonded?
- Do they have references you can check?
- What kind of warranty on workmanship is included?
- Are there any hidden fees, such as disposal costs?
Take your time, do your homework and plan, and you will have a good experience maintaining your roof.