7 Factors That Affect Roof Replacement Costs

roof replacement costs

According to the EPA, around 2.3 million homes will need a roof replacement over the next decade. If your roof is looking a little worse for wear, you’ve probably already decided the time has come to replace it.


Uppermost in your mind will be roof replacement costs. There are many factors that affect the final cost. There are choices you can make to keep your costs down.

Let’s take a closer look at 7 factors that affect roof replacement costs and what you can do about them.

1. Roofing Material

Your choice of roofing material is the single biggest factor affecting roof replacement costs. But there is more than just the initial cost to consider.

Asphalt Roofs

The most popular choice across the nation is asphalt or composite shingles. They are easy to install, last for a relatively long time (about 20 years), and are recyclable. They also come in a range of colors.

Metal Roofs

Metal roofs are more costly but usually last longer. They are super low maintenance and come in a huge range of styles these days. The initial higher cost is offset by the fact that you’ll probably never need to replace them, with an average lifespan of 80 years.

Wooden Roofs

Wood shingles look great and create a rustic look that suits a lot of the Eastern seaboard. But they’re high-maintenance and expensive.

Slate Roofs

If you want to give your home a high-end look that will last for generations to come, choose slate. It can last up to 200 years and is low-maintenance. The snag is the cost – it’s the most expensive choice you can make.

2. The Size and Style of Your Roof

No surprises here – the bigger the roof, usually the greater the cost. That said, if it’s a very simple style it will cost less in labor to both remove the old and install the new roof.

If you have a complex roof, expect to pay more. Typically, this is a roof with many gables. They are more complicated and require more care, and therefore take longer to install.

You should also expect a higher roof cost if you’ve got a steep pitch. It’s more dangerous for roofers to work on and will require more safety gear and time to set it up. They may also need to set up scaffolding in some areas.

If your roof has a lot of penetrations – ie, vents, skylights, chimneys – these also make the project more complicated. This will push up the cost.


3. Roof and Site Accessibility

In most cases, contractors will need to remove the old roof before installing the new one. They want to bring a dump truck as close to the roof as possible and have easy, safe access to the roof to tear it off.

Vehicle Access

If it’s hard for the workers to access the roof or to get the dump truck near the house, that’s going to cost you more. This is often down to the design of your home and not something that you have a lot of control over. By clearing the areas around your home, you can make it as easy as possible for the contractor to gain access.

Install Over an Existing Roof?

It’s tempting to skip this step by simply installing a new roof over an old one. However, this is rarely a good idea. Some building codes do not permit it. In the end, it will add a lot of weight strain to your home and is very hard to make completely waterproof.

4. The Framing of the Roof

When thinking about the cost of roof repair or replacement, we tend to think about the shingles. That’s what we can see, and they are the biggest component. But underneath, there’s a lot going on.

A contractor will need to inspect the underlying structure, including:

  • Rafters – the structural beams that support the roof decking
  • Trusses – triangular frames that support the roof
  • Decking – the base of the roof that the leak barrier, felt, and shingles
  • Fascia – the board nailed to the end of the trusses that holds the gutters

If you need a roof replacement, hopefully, all of these components are in good condition. This will keep the costs down. But if any need to be replaced the job will take longer and cost more.

5. Your Location

The climate has a big impact on roofing materials and construction costs.

Areas such as the Pacific Northwest and famous for their high rainfall levels, and that has an impact on roofing costs. Your contractor needs to be 100% confident your roof is fully watertight.

2021 brought 20 weather/climate disaster events to the continental United States. This included:

  • Hail storms in Ohio Valley
  • Tropical Storms Elsa and Fred in Florida
  • Tornados in the Midwest

You can’t prepare for every type of natural disaster. But you want to make sure that you get a roof that is robust enough to face the realities of your local climate for decades.

6. Time and Labor Costs

All of the factors above will impact time and labor costs.

More complicated roof replacements will take more time. If there is damage to the underlying structure, you will have additional labor costs as well as material costs to contend with.

7. Dumpsite Fees

Finally, your old roof will need to be disposed of responsibly. If you’ve got an asphalt or metal roof currently, both of those materials can be recycled. But there will be dumpsite fees to pay regardless, which you’ll need to factor into your overall cost.

Keep Roof Replacement Costs Down

There are many factors that affect roof replacement costs, and not all of them are in your control.

To keep costs down, try to make your roof as accessible as possible. Also, take your time to decide which style of roofing material is right for you. This is the single biggest factor in your control that will impact the final cost.

At Best Roofing Estimates, we help you to make an informed decision about your roof replacement. Use a roof replacement cost calculator to give you a ballpark figure for different sizes and materials.

We can also help you to get fast and free roofing quotes from local contractors. By comparing quotes, you could bring the cost to replace your roof down by thousands of dollars.

Get a free quotation today!


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