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What is the Average Cost to Tear Off and Replace a Roof in 2022?

Roofing Expert

Most times, replacing a roof is best left to professionals because there are a lot of ins and outs to be aware of—even on a ‘simple’ roof. Not to mention, improperly installed roofing material will not generally be covered under warranty.

Below, we will discuss the importance of dealing with a roof quickly and how much you can expect to pay on average. We’ll also cover a few other things around care for your roof and related repairs that can get expensive.

divider 5The Importance of Replacing a Roof

Depending on the quality of roofing materials used, you will likely not have to do it more than once or twice in the time you own a home. However, replacing a roof is not something you want to put off. Because many roofs are designed to last and be covered by a warranty for up to 25 years or longer, you want to make sure a professional roofer does it.

Another thing to remember is that different types of roofing material will be better suited for different geographical locations, and there are many options to choose from. Shingles are one of the most common roof materials for residential homes. A local roofer will be able to give you their opinion on whether shingles will be best for your roof.

man working on roof shingles
Image Credit: TFoxFoto, Shutterstock

How Much Does Replacing a Roof Cost?

Like many other trades-related projects, there isn’t any concrete fixed price for replacing a roof. This is especially true because while some roofers will charge you labor and materials, most will charge you a fixed rate per square foot.

Two things will determine the cost of this project. First, the size of your roof—which is calculated in square feet. The second factor is the going rate. On average, this will be $3.50–$5.00 per square foot, depending on where you live.

Let’s assume you have a 1,000 square-foot roof for an easy calculation. You can expect to pay $3,500–$5,000 in this case. This price usually includes everything—tools, labor, and materials.

Additional Costs to Anticipate

Although it is a fairly big job, replacing a roof is not usually super complex. So, there are not typically many extra or surprise costs involved. This is especially true if you are using a professional roofer as they will be able to correctly estimate everything involved and give you an accurate quote upfront. That being said, some things can increase the price.

As mentioned above, some roofers will charge an hourly rate plus materials, but most professional roofers work by square footage. They take some measurements and times that by their rate and give you the price. Whichever way your contractor is calculating your price, here are a few things that may contribute to a higher than average price:

  • Complex Roof: If your roof has a complex set of hips and valleys, this will likely increase the price you pay—especially if the contractor is working with an hourly rate plus materials.
  • Extra Repair: Most roofers will account for some minor repairs of the plywood sheeting. However, if there is serious damage to the old shingles and water got in, the damage could be significant. Extensive water damage can quickly turn into a nightmare because attic insulation may need to be changed depending on how deep the water went.
  • Changing the type of roof: If you’ve decided on a different kind of material entirely, this could cost more due to potentially having extra preparation steps.
installing roof shingles
Image Credit: brizmaker, Shutterstock

How Often Should a Roof be Replaced?

There is no concrete answer to this question. Due to the increasing quality and variety of materials available now, a roof can last anywhere from 15–50 years. So, in most cases, if you’ve recently replaced the roof, you probably don’t need to worry about it for the rest of the time you own the home.

If you haven’t replaced the roof and you’re wondering if it might be time, there are some things you can check to give you a pretty good idea without having to call a roofer for an official quote.

  • Look in the attic: This is actually one of the best indications of whether you need to replace the roof. Once you’re in the attic, you’ll be looking for evidence of water leaking, such as stains in the plywood.
  • Check the roof: Just because it’s not leaking yet doesn’t mean it won’t be soon. If you have a shingle roof, you can visibly see how worn out they are. If the shingles are curling at their edges or spots where the sand has been stripped off the shingle, it won’t be long before they are leaking.
  • Sagging Areas: If you notice areas of the roof are sagging, this could indicate a moisture problem, and the wood has begun to rot, which needs to be addressed.

Does Insurance Cover a Roof Replacement?

Most insurance does not cover a roof replacement. However, if a professional roofer does the roof, it will have warranty coverage for the roof’s expected life. For example, many shingle roofs will have a 25-year warranty.

That being said, the warranty will cover manufacturer’s defects. So, if a shingle wears out and starts leaking prematurely, that will likely be covered by the warranty. If there is water damage, your insurance might cover that.

If your roof is ripped off in a violent wind storm, the warranty will probably not cover it. However, in some cases, your homeowner’s insurance might. The only way to find out for sure is to contact your broker for clarification on what they will cover for replacing the roof or related costs.

man working on the roof
Image Credit: ND700-Shutterstock

Roof Maintenance During its Lifetime

Even though your roof is designed to last for many years by itself, the expected life will assume some ongoing maintenance to help it reach its maximum life. A professional roofer can be hired to do this maintenance—and should be unless you are very comfortable with safe work practices at heights.

Here are a few tips for DIY maintenance on your roof:

  • Check the roof: Checking your roof regularly will help you catch any problems before they turn into disasters. For example, if a storm damages shingles, they can be replaced individually before the roof leaks.
  • Look for leaks: If you find a leak, fixing it immediately is important. Water damage can spread if left unfixed. Unless you’re comfortable with roofing, then this is a job you’ll want to hire out.
  • Trim branches: Those big tree branches overhanging your roof might look great, but if they break, they can damage the roof. Even if they don’t break and the wind blows them against the roof, they could rip up shingles. So, trimming them back is recommended.
  • Shovel roof: This one can be dangerous, so hiring a professional may be a good idea. But keeping your roof clear of snow if you live somewhere that gets a lot of snow is a good idea. Because snow is quite heavy if allowed to pile up, and as it melts and freezes the ice can damage your shingles.

divider 5Closing Thoughts

With any luck, the roof will have been changed recently when you purchased your home. If that’s the case, you may never have to worry about doing anything other than minor repairs if you take care of it. If you do replace it, make sure you hire a reputable roofer because they will ensure the job is done properly (and warranty their work). A reputable contractor will also usually use high-quality materials.


Featured Image Credit: sylv1rob1, Shutterstock

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