Estimating the costs of a roof replacement isn’t easy. Every home is different and even the best roof contractors cannot account for every single contingency. Thus, it is inevitable that, sometimes, additional costs can be uncovered by your roof contractor, beyond their control, after work has begun. Especially with older homes, there are just too many factors that cannot be evaluated until they the shingles have been pulled off, revealing what’s below.
Though it doesn’t happen to everyone, especially in newer homes, if you are in a older home (20 years or more) you should be prepared for some surprise expenses that may pop up and, unfortunately, aren’t normally found until after work has begun.
Leaks and Rotten Plywood
It can take a while for a leak to manifest itself inside your home to the point you notice it (stains, streaks on the ceiling or walls) and sometimes the signs just aren’t there until the shingles are removed during a repair or replacement. Apparent or not, leaks cause damage especially to wood structures like the rafters and even your frame. The hidden ones can cause the most damage as they are left, untreated, for months or even years.
If a previously unknown leak is discovered and has caused extensive damage, material and labor costs can increase significantly and must be addressed.
Poor Repairs Or Upgrades
There are a lot of Do It Yourselfer’s and unqualified roofers attempting to be roof contractors out there, and some of them may have the training and equipment necessary to affect roof repairs or upgrades without issue but unfortunately, too many do not. Outside of the obvious dangers like falling off the roof, if a repair or upgrade is done improperly, it can end up causing more damage than the original problem!
Too many times have roof contractors come across these “homemade repairs” and “upgrades” only to discover extensive damage and driving up costs hundreds, sometimes thousands of dollars.
Complying With Local Codes & Ordinances
Older homes and buildings may have been built under different codes that are no longer applicable to new construction. As roof contractors must abide by all codes, laws, and ordinances, this may incur additional costs to bring you up to code if needed. In terms of energy efficiency and sustainability this is great news but it is something to keep in mind if you are in an older home.
Mold & Pests
In warmer, humid areas of the country like Metro Atlanta, mold and termites can add to the costs of your roof replacement. Usually found after construction has started, damage from insects or decay must be addressed before work is continued. If found, it will add to your immediate costs but if found early enough, can save you even more in future prevention.
Roof contractors do their best to provide an accurate estimate and often strive to stay within it, but in practice, you never know what you are working with until you are working on it.