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Roof Replacement vs. Roof Repair: When To Make The Right Choice

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If you are a homeowner, you know how important it is to maintain your roof in good condition. Your roof protects your home from the elements, enhances its curb appeal, and adds value to your property. But sometimes, your roof may suffer from damage, wear and tear, or aging, and you may wonder whether you should repair it or replace it entirely. How do you make the right choice?

In this article, we will help you answer this question by providing you with five key points that you need to consider and answer truthfully before making a decision. We will also explain the pros and cons of each option, as well as the costs and longevity of each. 

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Point 1: How severe is the damage?

The first thing you need to assess is how severe the damage is on your roof. If you have minor issues, such as a few missing or cracked shingles, a small leak, or some mold or mildew growth, you may be able to fix them with a simple repair. A repair is usually cheaper and faster than a replacement, and it can extend the life of your roof for several years.

However, if you have major issues, such as extensive water damage, structural damage, sagging or collapsing sections, or multiple leaks, you may need to replace your roof entirely. A replacement is likely much more expensive and time-consuming than a repair, but if completed to a high standard, it can give you a new and improved roof that will last for decades.


Point 2: How old is your roof?

The second thing you need to consider is how old your roof is. The average lifespan of a roof depends on the type of material it is made of, the quality of installation, the climate and weather conditions, and the level of maintenance. Generally speaking, asphalt shingles last for 15 to 25 years, wood shingles last for 20 to 30 years, metal roofs last for 40 to 70 years, and tile roofs last for 50 to 100 years. However, if your roof structure is wood, and you’ve had a long period of water ingress that is affecting the strength of your roof trusses, clearly that’s going to severely reduce the life expectancy of your roof.

If your roof is nearing or exceeding its expected lifespan, you may want to replace it rather than repair it. Even if your roof does not show any signs of damage, it may be losing its efficiency and performance over time. A new roof can provide you with better insulation, ventilation, energy efficiency, and durability.


Point 3: How much can you afford?

The third thing you need to think about is how much money you can afford to spend on your roof project, including any necessary elements like underlayment, flashing, roof trusses and even roof purlins. To get a better idea of costs, you can explore suppliers like voestalpine Metsec for estimates.

The cost of repairing or replacing a roof varies depending on the size and shape of your roof, the type and quality of materials used, the labor and equipment required, and the location and season of the project. According to HomeAdvisor, the average cost of repairing a roof in the US ranges from $353 to $1,463, while the average cost of replacing a roof ranges from $5,467 to $11,237.

Of course, these are only estimates, and your actual cost may be higher or lower depending on your specific situation. You should get at least three quotes from different contractors before making a decision. You should also factor in the long-term costs and benefits of each option. For example, a repair may be cheaper upfront but may require more frequent maintenance and repairs in the future. A replacement may be more expensive upfront but may save you money on energy bills and prevent further damage in the future.


Point 4: What are your goals and preferences?

The fourth thing you need to weigh in is what are your goals and preferences for your home and your roof. Do you plan to stay in your home for a long time or sell it soon? Do you want to improve the appearance and value of your home or just keep it functional? Do you care about the environmental impact of your roofing materials or not? Do you prefer a certain style or color for your roof or not?

These are some of the questions that can help you determine whether repairing or replacing your roof is more suitable for you. For example, if you plan to sell your home soon, you may want to replace your roof to increase its resale value and appeal to potential buyers. If you want to improve the look of your home, you may want to choose a new roofing material that matches your aesthetic preferences. If you care about the environment, you may want to opt for a roofing material that is eco-friendly and energy-efficient. 


Point 5: What does your home insurance cover?

The fifth thing you need to check is what your home insurance covers in terms of roof damage. Depending on your policy and the cause of the damage, your insurance may cover part or all of the costs of repairing or replacing your roof. For example, if your roof was damaged by a storm, fire, vandalism, or other covered peril, your insurance may reimburse you for the expenses. However, if your roof was damaged by neglect, lack of maintenance, or normal wear and tear, your insurance may not cover anything.

You should review your policy carefully and contact your insurance agent or company to find out what is covered and what is not. You should also file a claim as soon as possible after the damage occurs and document the evidence with photos and receipts. Finally, get a written estimate from a reputable contractor before agreeing to any work.

Before you make that final decision you need to properly consider all of these points. Yes, it may just come down to budget, and what you can afford at this time. But remember that your house is an investment, and the money you put in now may pay you back in 2-3 years time when you decide to sell. Additionally, roof refurbishment or replacement can be accompanied with thermal insulation improvements which will have a massive improvement on your monthly outgoings, particularly in winter. It’s not an easy decision to make, but hopefully you now have the tools you need to make the right one. 







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