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7 Factors That Could Impact the Cost of A New Asphalt Roof

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More than 80% of homes in North America are roofed with asphalt shingles, and for good reason: they’re easy to install and are more affordable than the pricy roofing materials they are designed to mimic.

But exactly how much does a new asphalt roof cost?  The short answer is between $3.50 and $8.00 per square foot. After doing the math, you may be thinking, “Wow! That’s a pretty good price!” But wait!

In roofing lingo, there is a term called a square, and no, I’m not talking about an object with four identical sides. The type I’m referring to is a measurement: a 10x10 area, or 100 square feet, is referred to as a square. So, that $3.50 to $8.00 per square foot actually equals an average price of $350 - $800 per square.  

With this in mind, the current average cost to re-shingle a roof is around $7,200. However, this can vary drastically. 

Let’s take a look at five different factors, including some unforeseen costs, that impact the price of your roof replacement.

1. Shingle Grade

There are three types of asphalt shingles: 3-tab, architectural, and luxury. The type you choose will impact the cost of your overall replacement.

    • 3-tab: Since they only use one layer of materials, these are more affordable than their counterparts. They cost $2.25 – $3.00 per square foot or $225 to $300 per square.
    • Architectural: You can consider these the halfway pricepoint. They typically cost between $3.50 and $4.75 per square foot or $350 to $475 per square.
    • Luxury: These are the most expensive out of the bunch. They cost between $6.00 to $8.00 per square foot or $600 to $800 per square.

             three tab shingles_WebP              architectural shingles_WebP              luxury shingles_WebP

                      3-Tab Shingles                          Architectural Shingles                          Luxury Shingles

Not sure which asphalt shingle would work best for your home? Read this article for a thorough breakdown of the benefits of each type.

2. Materials

While shingles might be the first things that come to mind when you think of a roof, your replacement actually requires a list of additional materials:

  • Underlayment
  • starter shingles
  • ice and water shield
  • ridge vents
  • Ridge Cap

While these are the main components, there are other roofing materials used such as flashing, drip edge, and pipe boots.

These components can vary in price. Although high-quality materials come with a more expensive price tag, they’ll help your roof last longer and better protect your home, giving you the most bang for your buck.

3. Size

This may seem obvious, but the size of your roof has the biggest impact on the cost of your replacement. If you have a bigger roof, your installer will need more materials, manpower, and time to complete the job.

4. Roof Complexity

A multifaceted roof that features lots of angles, valleys, and hips will take more time to replace. And as they say, time is money.

The pitch (steepness) - the steeper the slope of the roof, the more shingles it takes to cover it.  In addition, a roof with a very steep slope is harder to work and poses a safety concern requiring greater staging and safety equipment.

5. Penetrations

Home features like multiple chimneys, skylights, plumbing vents, etc. can complicate your roofing project. Working around these obstacles takes extra time in order to properly install the necessary flashing to ensure a watertight seal.

Unforeseen Issues That Could Impact the Cost of Your replacement

1. Structural Integrity of the Decking

Sometimes, underlying damage isn’t discovered until after your replacement has started. For example, let’s consider roof decking.

The roof decking or sheathing is the plywood under the shingles that connects the roof to the frame of your home. Because it lays under the shingles, it can be difficult to tell its condition until the old roof has been torn off.

rotted corner decking

If your decking is rotten, sprinkled with black mold, or shows heavy water damage, it will need to be replaced. This additional cost will be included alongside your original estimate after the job is done.

2. Cracked Siding

If your roofer discovers cracked siding during the replacement, that repair will be an out-of-pocket cost. Poor installation, strain, weather, and old age can all cause your siding to crack.

cracked siding_WebP

If it’s confined to a single section, you’ll only need to replace the affected area. However, open cracks leave room for moisture to penetrate the siding. If this happens, you could be looking at water damage requiring a much more extensive, pricy repair.

So, What Else Should You Know?

The price of a roof replacement will be unique for each and every homeowner. While we just went over seven things that can impact the overall cost, there is one more thing I’d like you to consider: no two roofing contractors are going to charge the same rate.

Look, I get it. Going with a cheap roofer can seem tempting. However, just as using high-quality materials may give you a longer-lasting roof, the same can be said about using a top-quality contractor for your replacement.

Just because a roofer gives you an affordable estimate doesn’t mean they work for a sketchy company. However, there are definitely risks involved. To learn why you shouldn’t hire a contractor solely based on their affordable prices, read this article on The 6 Risks of Working With a Cheap Roofing Contractor.

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