How Much Does a Roof Replacement Cost?
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Roof Replacement Cost Guide
Updated: June 2, 2023
Table 1. Average roof replacement cost
|National average cost||$24,654|
|Average range||$17,750 to $33,037|
On average, it costs between $17,750 and $33,037 to replace a roof, with most homeowners spending around $25,000. In some cases, roofing prices can be higher than $60,000, though. It all depends on what roofing material you get, the square footage of your roof, and how extensively damaged your old roof is.
For example, installing a high-quality slate roof on a mansion with water-damaged rafters will cost thousands— if not tens of thousands — of dollars more than simply replacing the asphalt shingles on a townhome. Additional factors like roof pitch and location can also impact the cost of a new roof.
This guide will help you understand these factors so you can estimate how much your new roof will cost. However, this will only be a rough estimate, and what you actually spend could differ dramatically. If you want to know exactly what your new roof will cost, get a written quote from a local roofing contractor who has inspected your roof.
Factors that can affect the total cost of your new roof
The material you choose is one of the most important cost factors for your roof project. High-end options like slate, tile, and metal roofs are always more expensive than those made with less durable substances like PVC or asphalt.
Here’s a breakdown of how much you can expect to pay for various popular roofing materials. These prices include labor costs—which usually fall between $1 and $3 per square foot—and demolition costs—which are usually less than a dollar for every square foot. The material prices below are listed per roofing square. One roofing square is equivalent to 100 square feet, and contractors commonly measure roofs in roofing squares.
Table 2. Replacement costs for different roofing materials
|Material||Average cost per roofing square (installed)||Average roof replacement cost range|
*Average roof replacement costs are based on U.S. Census data on the average U.S. roof size of 1,700 square feet.
To find a rough estimate for your roof replacement, you can use our listed cost per roofing square for your chosen material. First, find the square footage of your roof and divide it by 100. Then, multiply that number by the applicable material price to find your estimate.
For example, let’s say your roof measures 2,000 square feet, and you want to know how much a clay tile replacement would cost. Divide 2,000 by 100 to get 20, then multiply it by $1,580. This would leave you with $31,600. That’s your estimate.
Remember, this is only a ballpark estimate based on average rates, so it should only be used to help you determine which materials are within your price range. It bears repeating that you’ll only know how much you’ll pay for your replacement roof after meeting with a roofing contractor.
How much you have to replace
The more material and work it takes to return your roof to ship shape, the more you’ll pay in material and labor costs. So, if you need to replace every shingle, shake, or tile on your roof, you should expect to pay more than if you just need some light patchwork.
Unfortunately, the amount of your roof that requires fixing isn’t always up to you, so you can’t always opt for simple repairs instead of wholesale replacement. Every roof eventually succumbs to erosion and needs to be fully replaced after a few decades. Unexpected disasters like serious storms and fires can take out a whole roof at once.
Suppose you want to upgrade your home with a more durable or stylish type of roofing material. In that case, you’ll need to replace the whole thing since you can’t mix incompatible materials.
You'll need to have your roof inspected to determine if you need to replace everything or if you can get away with slapping a few new shingles onto an exposed section.
How to keep repairs small
You can prevent the need for premature roof replacement by nipping any and all roof damage in the bud. A missing shingle or cracked tile is like a breach in your roof’s armor that makes the whole system weaker and more vulnerable to the elements, and neglecting to fix these small issues might mean you need to replace your whole roof sooner than expected.
Get a roof inspection every year to ensure you catch vulnerabilities early on. The best time to do this is spring after all the snow has melted off your roof. It’s also key to routinely clean your gutters to prevent water from pooling on your roof. To make this yearly roof maintenance an easy routine and take care of it all at once, schedule your gutter cleaning for the same week as your annual inspection.
Even with these precautions, you should still expect to replace your entire roof every two decades. The exact lifespan of your roof will depend on the material it’s made of. Shingle roofs typically need to be replaced after 20 to 30 years, while slate roofs can last over 100 years if given the proper care.
The size, design, and pitch of your roof
As you might expect, the larger your roof, the more material you’ll need to replace it. As previously mentioned, the more material you need, the more the job will cost. What may surprise you, though, is that the pitch of your roof also plays a factor in its replacement costs.
A roof’s pitch —sometimes called its slope — describes how steep your roof is. Pitch is calculated by measuring how many inches a roof raises vertically across 12 inches or horizontal length. Exceptionally steep roof pitches (typically anything steeper than 9/12) can be hazardous to work on, so servicing a roof this steep requires additional safety measures and labor (i.e., costs). Conversely, flat roofs are perfectly level, so they’re cheaper to repair and replace than roofs with actual pitches.
Other factors that can impact your price are how your roof is shaped—design elements like dormers and overhangs can all increase the price—and what structural elements like skylights and chimneys it includes. As a general rule, more complex roof designs will always be harder and more expensive to work on.
Where you live
The price of just about any home improvement project will depend greatly on where you live, and roof replacement prices are no exception. Local market conditions, material costs, and competition between roofing companies differ regionally, and they will all contribute to your final costs.
Also, building codes vary by location, and they may require purchasing a more expensive but durable roofing or underlayment. Depending on what your roof will need to withstand, your local building codes may require you to choose a more fire-resistant, ice-resistant, insect-resistant, or waterproof material than you plan to shell out for.
Lastly, your HOA may have some say in what your roof is made of. Depending on what your HOA has dictated, roofs can look like in your neighborhood, you may have to choose a more expensive material. Conversely, if you want to get a high-end material, but your HOA doesn’t like how it would clash with your neighbor’s asphalt roof, they may bar the replacement.
Removing the old roof
Roofers usually have to tear off all of the existing roof’s material and underlayment before installing a new roof system. And since this involves some pretty intense labor, it can add considerable costs to this project.
On average, homeowners spend about $1 per square foot to remove their old roof, though it can cost more depending on the roofing material. Removing asphalt shingles is likely to cost a little less, while heavy stone slabs or metal sheets will be more expensive to remove. But if your roof measures 1,500 square feet, you’ll likely pay about $1,500 for removal.
Removal isn’t always necessary, though. For some roofs, you can simply have it “reroofed”. This is where new shingles are installed on top of the old, worn-out shingles. This can save you a lot of money, but it’s only really an option for asphalt shingle roofs — excluding those made with architectural shingles — and it can usually only be done once.
The bottom line is that unless your old roof is made from a single layer of 3-tab shingles, you should probably budget a few grand for removal.
Structural updates and repairs
If you’re replacing a roof because of a heavy leak or visible sagging, you may have to replace more than just your shingles, tiles, or shakes. Your roof could have serious structural issues like mold, warping, or water damage. If this is the case, you may have to replace some of your rafters, beams, or decking, and this could run your bill up a few thousand dollars depending on the extent of the damage.
On a similar note, you may need to reinforce your roof if you’re upgrading it. Say your current roof is made from a lightweight material like asphalt shingles or aluminum sheets, and you want to get a much heavier material like stone or slate. You’d probably need to pay to install a few extra support beams. Otherwise, your roof could buckle under its own weight.
Roof replacement pricing tiers
Budget-friendly roof replacement
A basic roof replacement costs between $6,732 and $13,897.
If you want to keep your roof replacement as cheap as possible, opt for budget-friendly materials like PVC tiles or affordable types of shingles. These materials aren’t as durable as the high-end options, so you’ll have to replace them again sooner. This won’t be very cost-effective, but it will keep the price you pay right now much lower.
Going with these lightweight materials also means you won’t have to spend money on extra support for your roof unless there’s structural damage you need to fix.
Doing some of the work yourself will also lower your costs drastically. You should never actually install roofing materials yourself since doing it wrong can result in serious damage and void your warranties. But if your roof has a safe and gradual pitch that you feel comfortable walking (and working) on, you could DIY the removal of your old roof.
Be aware that every type of roof needs to be removed a little differently. Do some research beforehand to learn the best practices for removing your old roof’s material and get all the necessary tools.
Also, as we said earlier, it’s cheaper to repair a roof than to replace the whole thing. When you meet with your contractor, ask if they can patch up your roof’s damaged spots instead of tearing the whole thing out and replacing everything. Simply asking this question could save you a lot of money.
Finally, the number one tip for saving money on your roof replacement is to shop around and get quotes from multiple roofing companies. That’s the best way to know which roofer in your area is charging the least for replacement services.
Mid-range roof replacement
A mid-range roof replacement costs between $12,529 and $35,996.
If you’ve got a little room in your roofing budget and want to get the job done right, hire professionals to do all of the work. While DIY roofing is possible, it’s risky business, especially if you’re inexperienced with the required tools and techniques. If you can afford to hire the pros, it’s best to leave everything to them.
It can also greatly extend your roof’s life expectancy by choosing better materials than simple asphalt shingles, and the longer your roof lasts, the less you’ll have to pay for roof replacement. Architectural shingles, wooden shakes, and even metal roofing options might be just what you’re looking for. You should probably avoid options like stone and slate, though, as these materials are costly and often require costly structural changes.
Whatever material you choose, we still highly recommend getting quotes from several different roofers. There’s no reason to spend more than you have to.
High-end roof replacement
A high-end roof replacement costs between $35,996 and $61,899.
If you want to get the best roof money can buy, no matter how much it costs, our first tip is to opt for natural clay, copper, or slate roofing. These materials are second to none in terms of longevity, durability, and energy efficiency since they greatly reduce thermal transfer through your roof.
Since these materials can last up to 100 years or longer, you probably won’t ever have to replace your roof again. Additionally, they can greatly increase your home’s value, so if you decide to sell your home in the next few decades, you’ll recoup some (but not all) of what you spent on your new roof.
If your current roof isn’t already outfitted with one of these high-end and heavyweight materials, be prepared to shell out thousands of extra dollars to reinforce your home’s structure to accommodate the added load.
Lastly, you should pick a roofing company based on reputation, not price. Opt for a roofer that only has stellar reviews that praise the company’s speed, process, and handiwork. This will probably mean paying thousands more than if you worked with the most affordable roofer, but quality is never cheap.
How to pay for your roof replacement
Home improvement loans
As with many home improvement projects, it’s possible to get either a home equity loan or a personal loan to cover the roof replacement costs if you don’t have the cash on hand.
You can usually borrow more money using a home equity loan, and their interest rates are often better, but the terms of the loan will depend on how much equity you have in your home. The downside is that home equity loans typically use your home as collateral. If you can’t repay your loan, you could lose your house, so borrowing through a home equity loan is a little riskier than taking out a personal loan.
Your interest rate will depend on your credit score for a personal loan. These loans are also a little easier to apply for than home equity loans most of the time.
A personal loan may be better for you if you have excellent credit and don’t need much money to cover your roof replacement. If your credit score isn’t very impressive, but you have great home equity, a home equity loan may work better if you’re certain you can pay it back in the given time.
Many roofing companies allow you to finance through them when they replace your roof, and this might be your best option if you don’t have good credit and don’t want to take out a home equity loan. Just make sure to read the fine print of your contract. The company will likely charge interest on your roofing loan, and you want to ensure you can afford the payments.
Homeowner’s insurance claims
If your roof needs to be replaced because of a natural disaster or some other accident, then your homeowner’s insurance company will usually cover the cost of a replacement. So, if you’ve got comprehensive insurance and your roof was damaged by a hailstorm, wildfire, or falling tree, you might be in luck.
However, homeowner’s insurance is a lot less likely to cover the replacement costs for an old roof that has deteriorated like normal throughout its life and finally needs to be replaced. If your roof is well over 20 years old, you may need to pursue another financing option.
If you make an insurance claim to pay for your roof, save all the documentation from your roofing company. File away every receipt, quote, and inspection document in case your insurer requires any of these records to approve your claim.
If you have a home warranty, or your old roof came with a warranty that’s still applicable, you can make a claim on the warranty to help you pay for your roof repairs or replacement.
Unlike homeowner’s insurance, home warranties are often optional, so you probably don’t have one unless you intentionally purchased one. The good news is that your roof likely came with a limited warranty from the company that made the materials or installed them. You could make a claim if your roof is still protected under that warranty and the damage is covered.
As with an insurance claim, be sure to hold on to every record you get during the replacement to ensure the company responsible for your warranty will cover all the costs.
Other factors to consider
Like most significant home improvement projects, you need to get a building permit when you replace your roof. The application process and the exact permit you need to pull will depend on where you live. This won’t be free, but the costs will depend on where you live.
Similarly, you must ensure your new roof adheres to all applicable building codes. These will also vary depending on where you live, as many cities and counties have unique building codes beyond what’s required federally or state-wide.
Foregoing either of these requirements can result in hefty fines, insurance failures, and voided warranties.
These can be fairly complex hoops to jump through, though, and that’s part of the reason it’s always better to hire a licensed professional to replace your home’s roof instead of doing it yourself. A qualified roofer will know exactly how to pull the necessary permits and construct your roof to code, so you don’t have to worry about it.
To guarantee you’re hiring a high-quality roofer, look for one who is certified by the National Roofing Contractors Association (NRCA). This trade association certifies contractors who have proven themselves competent and trustworthy, so you know you’re getting one of the industry’s best when you hire roofers with a listed NRCA certification.
The cost to replace your roof
No one wants to learn that they have to replace their roof. The steep costs and the inconvenience involved both make it a taxing ordeal for any homeowner. However, when your roof needs replacing, you shouldn’t wait. Every day you spend under a leaky or structurally unsound roof is a day that the damage is getting worse and posing a threat to your safety. Luckily, with the financing options and money-saving tips we’ve mentioned, the high costs can be much more manageable.
Now that you know all there is to know about roof replacement costs, the next step is to get estimates from a few contractors to learn exactly how much you’ll spend on your new roof.
The information provided by our cost guides comes from a great variety of sources. For more information, read our Methodology and sources.