Roof Replacement Tips for First-Time Homeowners

First time homeowners have a lot to consider when making their first property purchase; particularly if it is a resale home.

Many home owners utilize a home inspection service to supply insights into the condition of major components of the home, and to gain prediction on the costs of rectifying any items needing attention.

Often “ball park” figures are provided that are based on published general costs for a specific type of trade work. Where it concerns roof repairs or roof replacements; these “general figures”, often expressed as a per square foot price; are seldom completely accurate.

They are not accurate when accounting for such requirements as poor working access, handling roof debris over long distances, property protection requirements, potential wood decking repairs, and required ventilation upgrades.

As a result; it is best to obtain accurate written estimates from certified roofing contractors, experienced in such work.

The roof needs to be thought of as a system. A roof is co-related to items such as insulation levels in attics, ventilation, rain ware which carries shedding roof water toward the foundation of a home, chimneys, and roof appliances such as skylights.

With the excitement that can accompany the purchase of a home; most of us tend to want to place funds into home improvement items which provide us with visual gratification, such as new kitchen designs, new furniture, lighting etc. But very frequently over-looked is the investment required to protect the homebuyers most valuable investment. That is the roof and related elements.

If faced with the prospect of replacing a roof, many new homeowners challenge the seller to replace the roof as part of the condition of sale. For particular sellers, experience has taught that if they agree to do so; the prime motivation is to get the least expensive bid to complete the job.

Experienced roofing contractors often see, examples of such roofing jobs completed to minimal standards, and in certain instances substandard completion. Under such circumstances; the new home buyer, may face problems after the sale period, and face unexpected expenses.

This not to say that many caring sellers; actually do choose reputable roofing contractors and select specifications and products that result in an enforceable warranty; that can be transferred to the new home buyer. It just does not seem to happen as often in contrast to the first scenario described.

If the new homeowner elects to handle the replacement cost of a roof; this can be an advantage because they can verify that the work completed is done to a proper standard, and from a decorator point of view; they can select products which match their intended style, colours and character of the home.

Whether it is the home seller or the new home buyer purchasing the roof; the first rule to remember is you get what you pay for.  Some new homeowners forget this fact; or simply don’t realize the value in that statement due to inexperience, or the perceived financial impact.

When doing the math on the subject, experience shows the following:

  • Investing in a manufacturer specification involving ice & water barrier membranes, underlayment covering the full roof deck, proper intake and exhaust ventilation, and selecting a superior grade of shingles, proper replacement of metal flashings, all installed by a certified installer

(this insures a virtually bullet proof installation warranted by the manufacturer ,and in addition to the installation company’s warranty. Such warranties are transferrable).

  • Choosing better product grades actually extends the life span of the roof and lowers operating costs over time.
  • Proper ventilation lowers heating and cooling costs, and can help to mitigate condensation, mould, and ice back up occurrences. It is important on homes which have been upgrade in terms of insulation.
  • A new roof can lower insurance costs (often insurers require proof of replacement or condition to write or renew home policies.)
  • A good looking and performing roof is a relatively inexpensive way to increase the home’s curb appeal and increase value
  • A well installed roof provides peace of mind for decades.

Flat roofs require particular expertise, and require highly insured roofing contractors, that have endorsements to install water-proofing systems for flat roofs.

Related Content: What Are The Most Common Types Of Materials Used For Flat Roofs?

Special products like slate cedar and metal also require roofers that have particular expertise with such products.

A new homeowner could think of it like this:

Good products + a poor contractor= a bad job (Typically workmanship issues or cut corners showing in time/ the manufacturer may not support the labour component of their warranty)

Poor products + a good contractor = a bad job (Typically premature product failures, manufacturers that don’t support warranty)

Good Products + a good contractor= a good roof (One which the manufacturer and contractor can stand by, and for which a manufacturer will honour the warranty)

To learn more about choosing the right contractor, purchasing a new roof, or roof repairs; visit: to learn more.