What Is The Cost Of A New Roof On A 900 Square Foot Home?
America wide, a new roof will cost on average anywhere between $8,000 and $15,000 but this is one topic where it is very hard to use averages as there are so many variable factors and first amongst these is the size of the roof. So if you are armed with the specific measurements of your roof, how can you work out how much it will cost for a new roof on a 900 square foot home?
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What is the cost of a new roof on a 900 square foot home?
A 900 square foot home will have a roof area of around 1,350 square feet but you should allow 1,400 square feet as a measurement to calculate the amount of roofing material as an average to reflect roof features like dormers, skylights and chimneys and also wastage. 1,400 square feet equals 14 roof squares so use this figure to calculate other material costs like underlayment and also the labor charge.
The average cost per roof square replacement is $350 - $600 per square but this wholly depends on the choice of roof materials. The roofing material is the main driving force behind the cost although there are other factors that influence price and which we will take a look at later.
|Roofing material||Price per square foot||Price per 1,400 square foot roof|
|Asphalt shingle||$2.50 - $4.50||$3,500 - $6,300|
|Vinyl (PVC)||$3.00 - $8.00||$4,200 - $11,200|
|Architectural shingles||$6.00 - $8.00||$8,400 - $11,200|
|Metal||$7.00 - $14.00||$9,800 - $19,600|
|Cedar||$8.00 - $12.00||$11,200 - $16,800|
|Composite||$8.00 - $15.00||$11,200 - $21,000|
|Concrete tile||$9.00 - $18.00||$12,600 - $25,200|
|Green||$10.00 - $35.00||$14,000 - $49,000|
|Clay tiles||$15.00 - $20.00||$21,000 - $28,000|
|Slates||$15.00 - $25.00||$21,000 - $35,000|
Let’s take a look at each of these roofing materials in more detail.
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900 square foot roof cost factors explained
Economic, simple to install and very popular, there is no wonder that asphalt is one of the most commonly used types of roofing material. Color choices are varied and excellent with plenty of different thickness and attributes like resistance to hail damage or roof shingles which are white in color to create a surface that reflects intense sunlight. Asphalt shingles are also one of the roofing materials which can be installed on top of an existing roof – called an overlay – which can also save costs by avoiding tearing down the old roof and waste disposal charges.
Vinyl is a good option for flat roofs which have a different requirement to a standard pitched design. Vinyl is a rolled roofing material that is spread over the roof.
These are a new type of asphalt shingle and are also sometimes called laminated shingles. Essentially, architectural shingles are thicker and longer lasting than plain asphalt, they are also super weather resistant to the damaging effects of say hail but are still light enough not to need expensive roof reinforcement. Like asphalt shingles, they are lightweight and quick and easy to install and come in a wide variety of colors.
Metal comes in different types of well, metal, and also different roof designs so there are metal tiles, seam roofs and corrugated tin roofs. Metal is incredibly durable and long-lasting and pretty low in maintenance as well. Metal roofing is usually energy efficient as it reflects the sun’s UV rays so reduces your air conditioning costs in the warmer months. If you are a green warrior then metal roofing is the choice for you as metal roofing products normally contain between 25% and 95% recycled content and are also nearly 100% recyclable when they are removed. However, some metal roof materials are heavy so you may need to reinforce the roof deck if you want to upgrade which is an added cost.
Cedar roofs come in two types, shingles and shakes. Shingles are more uniform in size and shape whilst shakes are more irregular. Both types must be treated with a flame retardant before they can be used as roofing material. Cedar is high maintenance make no mistake about it so faux or synthetic cedar is proving popular for some people as you get the look without all the work.
Composite shingles are blended products made from a number of different things including paper, fiberglass, wood, asphalt and laminates. Composite shingles are attractive, durable and long lasting with a wide choice of types, styles and colors. Easy to install, they are light so most roof decks can support them without the need for extra structural reinforcement.
Concrete is popular as it can be fashioned to resemble curved clay tile roofs or manufactured into flat tiles so there are lots of style options as well as plenty of color choices. Concrete is durable and reasonably low maintenance but can be heavy so some roofs will require reinforcement to bear the additional load.
Green roof options
A green roof has a layer of actual vegetation which is laid on top of the roof and over the top of a waterproofing system. There are several different ways to create a green roof but beware, they can be heavy.
Clay tiles are a more traditional type of roofing material and come in a wide range of styles and shapes. Clay tiles can last for many years if they're well looked after but they can be fragile and easily broken in bad weather events. Some clay tiles are quite heavy and so your roof frame may need to be upgraded in order to support them.
Slate has always been one of the most enduringly popular roofing materials and because it is a natural product, it can last for a very long time if well looked after. There are some examples of slate roofs that have lasted in excess of 100 years although it would be fair to say that 50 years would be a good average to work to. Slate has lots of different colour patterns and shades but it can be heavy and some roofs will require reinforcement, particularly older houses that have a roof deck that is not necessarily in good condition.
What are the additional factors which impact on the cost of a new roof on a 900 square foot home?
Apart from the labor costs and the roofing material, there are plenty of other factors which can contribute to the cost of a new roof on a 900 square foot home.
Here are some of the other things that may well increase your roofing bill and not all of these will necessarily appear on your roofer’s estimate. These include:
- Tear down and dumpster costs
- Building permits
- Upgrades to roofing structure to bear the additional loads of a new and heavier roofing material or to fall in line with the local roofing code
- Scaffolding hire
- Professional fees for an architect or surveyor
- Repairs or restoration for damage revealed when the old roofing materials are torn down
How to save money on the cost of a new roof for 900 square foot home
Being faced with the bill for a new roof is never a nice experience and most homeowners whilst keen to ensure their home is watertight, also want to pay the keenest price for the work. So how can you save money on the cost of a new roof for a 900 square foot home without cutting corners and ending up with a poor or shoddy job?
- Talk to your roofer about changing the roofing materials for a cheaper option, if you have chosen something heavy and need to upgrade the roof deck then why not pick something lighter and save that element of the cost?
- Look around for roofing grants, there are plenty at federal and local level, your roofing contractor may know what’s current and available, just make sure you read the fine print – some grants are for repair only and some re-roofing grants need to be paid back if you sell the property within a certain period of time
- Opt for a roof overlay so this means roofing over the one that is already there, this saves labor costs to remove the old roof and dump fees. Roof overlayments are not always the right answer and some roofers will refuse to do them but if your current roof is pretty level and in reasonable condition then this could be an option to consider if you want to use asphalt shingles
- Choose a roofing material that is quick and easy to work with like asphalt shingles and a roof design that is simple rather than complex
- Improve access to your property if it is tricky. A new roof and a tear down will require trucks to pull alongside the house and if they can’t do this then tearing down the old roof and carrying it some distance to the truck plus winching up roof shingles from the ground is all going to up the cost of the labor
If you are working to a tight budget then talk to your roofing contractor and see what he is able to suggest; there may be ways to shave costs off the bill that you don’t know about or haven’t thought of.
What is the labor cost to put a new roof on a 900 square foot home?
Labor costs will make up around half if not more of the overall estimate. One of the first things to impact labor charges is the roofing material; tile, slate and wood shakes are more difficult and time-consuming to install compared to asphalt shingles. The roof pitch and how steep it is will also impact on the amount of labor required. Very steep roofs with curves or changes in angle would be classified as more complex and usually need not only more roofing material but also take longer to reroof.
Labor charges can be calculated on an hourly rate, approximately $75 per hour or they can be measured per roof square at around $150-$300 per square.
How to find the right roofer for the job?
Rather than calculate the roofing cost yourself, why not contact two or three reputable roofing companies and let them measure up for you and provide quotes?
It’s only worth asking people to quote who have been personally recommended to you by friends or family or maybe a work colleague or neighbour. You should always have more than one quotation for the purposes of comparison but there is probably no point getting quotes from people who you don’t really intend to use.
It is possible to post on social media looking for names and recommendations for a good roofer but you are probably taking advice from people you don’t know. Why not consider using one of the many trader platforms which require your zip code and just a few details about the job you want completed? The beauty of these websites is that in theory, only people ready and available should get in touch with you but again, act with caution as some of them give out the impression that the traders are trusted but you will need to check thoroughly that their reviews are authentic and genuine. On some sites, traders pay to be there so they are more like advertising directories in the guise of respected trader sites.
What should you ask your roofer?
- Make sure he inspects your current roof accurately both inside and out and at height and takes proper measurements – a thorough inspection is more likely to flag any issues which might be hidden from street level so you don’t get any nasty shocks when the old roof is torn down
- Do you need any building permits and if so, how much they are?
- Is your old/new roof in line with current roof codes in your area? If not, is there any additional work required to bring the roof up to standard (usually only a problem on older houses)
- Is his company correctly insured?
- What guarantees and warranties does he offer for both workmanship and materials?
- Are there previous customers you can speak to in order to verify his credentials?
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you obtain an accurate measurement for your roof?
The general rule is that your roof will be roughly 1.5 times the square footage of the property so this is a good place to start. If your home is 900 square foot then your roof will measure somewhere in the region of 1,350 square feet or 13.5 roof squares. It is always best to have your roof professionally measured before proceeding on any assumption of the cost of labor or materials based on your own assessment. This is especially true if the design is complex with different roof features and varied pitches and elevations, this can make it very hard for anyone other than a real roofing expert to gauge an accurate calculation of the overall roof size.
What is a roof square?
A roof square is a handy unit of measurement which equates to 100 square feet and is a quantifier used to make the sale of roofing materials easier to compare. Most roofers will take about the price per roof square. For a roof measuring 1,350 square feet or 13.5 roof squares, it would be advisable to round this up to 1,400 square feet or 14 roof squares for the purpose of comparing roofing materials
Will I get a good return on my investment?
The ROI – Return on Investment – on a new roof is not as high as other features on a property like a new kitchen or an extension but nonetheless, the kickback is good plus you may also benefit from lower energy costs and increased curb appeal if you are thinking about selling. If you have opted for roof overlayment then this does not offer such a good return in terms of uplift in your property value but it does cut the cost of installing a new roof for sure. A roof overlay can actually put off prospective purchasers when it comes to sale time. If you are trying to decide whether to go for a roof overlay or a completely new roof, speak to a local expert and get quotes for a new roof.
How can I make the best choice of roofing shingles?
Speak to your roofer about your budget and what is currently on the house, it may be that certain shingles are too heavy for the existing roof deck or that he can recommend something more appropriate for the local climate. Cost, appearance, weather resistance and longevity are the key deciders when it comes to choosing roofing materials so talk through different alternatives with your contractor.
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