Are you ready to invest in a new roof? Trying to decide if it’s time for a complete replacement or simply a repair is a big project in and of itself! However, a good contractor with the right expertise will be able to expertly guide you through the process with a thorough inspection and suggest how to proceed based on their knowledge, your roof’s current state and your individual needs. Whether you have a few curling shingles and merely need a patch up or your contractor finds serious damage and feels it’s time for your roof to be totally replaced, make sure your contractor is appropriately licensed and insured.
Remember, you have quite bit at stake when you hire someone to repair or replace your roof. Hiring someone with the right experience and skill along with the correct licensing and insurance could be the difference between a beautiful new or repaired roof that will last, or a big headache and a huge amount of money that could be lost.
Here are some things you should think about when talking with a contractor about whether or not your roof should be repaired or replaced.
- How has the weather been? It might seem like a rhetorical or unrelated question, but discussing the different weather conditions put upon your roof from extreme heat and sun to wind and rain can help you clarify what condition your roof is truly in.
- What does your ceiling look like? That’s right, your indoor ceiling. Flaking or discolored stains and paint on the ceiling and upper walls of your home might mean roof replacement. That said, a small roof leak does not mean you need the whole roof replaced. A good contractor will be able to explain whether or not that small leak is a sign that the roof is falling apart or in need of repair.
- Is the cost of maintaining your roof exceeding the cost of replacing it? All roofs require a bit of maintenance from gutter cleaning to small shingle repairs, but if you’ve got major repair issues that amount to $2,000 here, $3,000 there in the course of a year and your contractor is wanting to charge you thousands more for a repair, replacing may save you money in the long-run.
- How old is your roof? If your shingles are over 20 years old, they probably need to be replaced. A roof that is less than 15 years old might be repairable – however, if a wide span of your shingles are battered, curled, missing or torn, you will most likely be in need of a replacement.
- What’s the span of damage across the whole roof area? Most contractors will suggest replacing if the damage is more than 25 to 30 percent of the roof.
- Are you thinking of selling? A new roof will increase the value of your home, while a roof that has been repaired could just be money out of your pocket with no valuable increase in equity.
- How many shingle layers does your roof currently have? Building code allows a maximum of two layers of shingles on houses. If you are hoping to repair your curly shingles with another layer but you already have two layers on your roof, you are going to need to replace.
Other considerations might also involve your roof deck, or the underside and supports of your roof and gutter system. If your roof deck or gutter system is rotting, then shingling won’t solve your problem. Roof deck damage is usually a sign of extensive roof damage and when your roof is replaced, you will receive a new roof deck and a new gutter system as well.
Keep in mind that even the best roof in the world will eventually need to be replaced, but replacing your roof too quickly or on the flip side, too late, can mean you’re wasting money either way. Timing is everything when it comes to your roof, especially when it comes to roof care.