Roof Replacement Cost 2017-2018: Roofing Installation Prices per Sq. Ft.

It’s time to replace that scrappy old roof. Are you wondering how much it will cost to install a new roof on your home or garage? If so, check out our just-updated new roof pricing guide for homeowners.

A beautiful cabin with combination roof

To help you with your pricing research, our very own RoofingCalc’s Special Agent went on a secret mission to find the latest roofing materials and installation prices, so you don’t have to do all the legwork!

Straight Off the Bat: It needs to be stated that not all roofs are made the same and not all roofers charge the same prices. That being said, most roofing contractors (and many insurance companies) will price their roof replacement services within $3.50 to $5.00 per square foot or $350 to $500 per square of architectural shingles installed. A square is equal to 100 square feet of roof surface. An average roof size is about 1,700 square feet.

asphalt shingles costs breakdown and material specs

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The above price range will normally include the removal and disposal of up to two layers of old shingles, and installation of new underlayment and ice-and-water shield at the eaves and valleys of the roof in accordance with the local building code requirements. All the necessary building permit expenses should also be included.

Note on a Wider Pricing Range: Depending on the type and overall complexity of the roof (number of floors/levels, number of skylights, chimneys, and dormers, ease of access, and overall roof difficulty), choice of shingles, your home’s geographic location, and the contractor or weekend warrior you choose to hire, your total average cost for a composition shingles roof could range from as low as $2.75 to as high as $7.50 per square foot or $275 to $750 per square installed.

Geographic Considerations:

There will always be significant variations in quoted roof prices, depending on the contractor you choose to hire and your home’s location. For instance, roof prices in the deep South (think South Carolina, Alabama, Georgia, and most of Louisiana) will generally be significantly lower (as low as $2.50 to $3.00 per sq. ft. installed) compared to prices charged in the North East or on the West Coast (which can be as high as $5.00 to $7.00 per sq. ft.).

Did you know? A typical ranch style or four-square single family house in the US will have a roof area of about 15 to 20 squares. — On the low-end, you can expect to pay anywhere from $5,000 to $8,000 for a simple roof replacement job on a typical four-square or ranch style house, while on the high-end, your total cost could range from $9,000 to $14,000 (or even more in some cases) for a more difficult installation, premium materials, and comprehensive workmanship warranty.

Install Roof Shingles

$7,500
Average price
Install Metal Roof

$14,500
Average price
Install Flat Roof

$8,225
Average price

See costs in your area Start Here - Enter Your Zip Code

Why is there such a Wide Pricing Range?

On the low-end, you may have roofers underbidding their jobs because they are either desperate for work or they happen to work on volume with razor-thin margins. For example, a contractor that is just starting out may be more willing to complete a roofing job for less than a more established company would. There are also smaller companies with no office and little overhead that can afford to charge less for the job and still be profitable.

Note: A low bid for a roofing job (such as a bid that is significantly less than $2.50 per sq. ft. or $250 per square) can also come from the so called weekend warriors or storm chasers working without any liability insurance and no worker’s comp, which could be a liability for the homeowner.

On the high-end of the price range, you have bids for fully-warrantied jobs from reputable exterior remodeling companies. — Keep in mind that a high price doesn’t always mean quality, especially if the contractor you hire is using sub-contractors to do the actual work. Subcontractors normally don’t get paid much, so they work on volume, which means that sometimes they may have to cut corners. 😉

Asphalt Shingles Materials and Labor Costs

Many professional roofing contractors employ a “40% materials / 60% labor” as their costs-breakdown formula. Of course, this pricing structure is just a guideline not set in stone. Some contractors include their overhead in the cost of labor, while others calculate it separately. All roofers use “squares” to measure and estimate roofs. A square equals to 100 sq. ft. of roof the surface.

That being said, below is the breakdown of typical roofing costs you can expect for materials and professional installation:

1. 3-tab Shingles
2. 30-Year Architectural Shingles
3. Premium Shingles

3-tab 25 Year Shingles

25 year shingles 3 tab display

The cost of materials for a basic 3-tab, 25-year shingles could range anywhere from $150 to $200 per square for all the necessary materials. — In addition to composition shingles, materials may also include any necessary roofing felt/underlayment, ice-and-water shield, nails, ridge-vent, and roof flashing details such as valley, drip-edge, gable, and chimney flashing and caulk. In some cases, the cost of materials may also include tarp, plywood, wood planks/boards, permitting, trash bags and ordering a dumpster.

Ice and Water

Ice and Water on Display at Lowe’s

Ridge vent roll on display at Lowe's

Ridge vent roll on display at Lowe’s

With most professional — licensed & insured roofing contractors, the installation cost is usually about 60% of the total cost. Thus, a 3-tab composition shingle roof will cost an average of $350 to $450 per square to install.

The installation assumes a single story house such as ranch, cape, or colonial, with a hip and gable combination roof. Most ranch type houses in the US, measure an average of 15 to 20 squares in terms of their actual roof surface, which translates to $6,725 to $9,000 for the very basic composition shingles roof installed, based on the average installed cost of $450 per square, with a typical 5 years labor warranty.

25 year shingles 3 tab prices per bundle

Note: The basic installation cost can actually be some $100 to $150 per square higher than the base cost, if there is a need to tear-off and remove the old roof (up to two layers), before a new roof can be installed. If new plywood needs to be installed over the old roof deck, or if there are many old, damaged or rotten planks/boards underneath the shingles that require replacement, the total cost will surely go up.

Roof deck prep and repair

Any skylight and chimney flashings will also likely increase the total cost. For instance, some contractors will charge an extra $200 per skylight or chimney flashing in addition to the cost for the rest of the work.

Did you know?

The 3-tab (25 year) shingle is the most basic and least expensive kind of roofing shingles, although in some ways, 3-tab shingles are more difficult to install (despite being lighter in weight) than architectural shingles. — The installer has to make sure that all the tabs, rows and columns, comprised of the 3-tab shingles align properly in order to have straight lines or a nice looking shingle pattern on the 3-tab shingle roof. — Proper alignment of shingles is not really a concern with architectural or dimensional shingles, which have a more random pattern, covered below.

30-Year Architectural / Dimensional Shingles

oakridge dessert sand 30 year shingles

You can expect to pay a bit more for a 30-year architectural (dimensional) shingles, which are a fair bit thicker (and hence longer lasting) than 3-tab shingles, and are more commonly installed by contractors who want to offer a better value to the homeowner. With, architectural shingles, it will probably cost you $75 to $100 more per square to install compared to a 3-tab 25-year shingles. — This increase in price is greater than the difference in cost of materials between the 3-tab and 30-year architectural shingles, because most contractors will put a greater mark-up on a higher-end product compared to an entry-level product. This is normally justified as a premium on the “higher quality of installation”, but you can be the judge of that. 😉

Thus, your total cost for a basic single-story hip and gable combination roof on a ranch style house could range anywhere from $7,850 to $11,000 depending on the actual size and complexity of your roof, the company you choose to hire, quality of their installation, warranty details, geographic location, your negotiation skills, and other variables.

oakridge 30 year shingles prices per bundle

Premium Shingles — 50 Year Shingles

Owens Corning Roofing Shingles Display

With premium shingles, such as 50-year architectural shingles, your total average cost will probably range from $450 to $700 per square installed, or anywhere from $9,000 to $14,000 depending on the company you choose to hire, roof access/difficulty, your home’s location, etc.

Premium shingles — This profile requires 5 bundles per square.

In terms of the cost of materials, some premium shingle profiles can cost as much as $50.00 per bundle, while requiring four or five bundles, depending on the profile, to cover a square of roofing surface. Thus, the cost of premium shingles alone can be as high as $200 to $250 per square, not including the cost of other necessary materials and supplies.

Did you know? A part of the increase in your total installation cost for premium shingles should be reflected and offset by a longer labor warranty (the promise of quality installation) provided with the installation. — A comprehensive 10-year workmanship warranty is what you should expect at this price point for the premium shingles installation.

Estimated Roof Costs (1620 s.f.)
Asphalt Shingles
Metal Roofing
Flat Roof
$7,500
$14,500
$8,225
See Roof Costs in Your Area

Did you know?

One thing you should keep in mind as a homeowner, is that no asphalt shingle roof will really last as long as 50 or even 30 years. That’s just a simple marketing gimmick used by the asphalt shingles manufacturers to get homeowners to pay the big bucks for their products backed by the so-called prorated warranty that is often not worth the paper it’s written on! Just imagine how much, or rather how little, money you will actually be able to get some fifteen or twenty years down the road for a roof that fails due to manufacturing defects? Not much! Never mind the fact that it will be extremely difficult to prove the cause of a roof leak is actually tied to material defects and not labor errors. Furthermore, the manufacturer would only be held responsible for replacing the materials that have actually failed, not the whole roof in its entirety. Not, only that, but the company responsible for the installation of your roof may no longer even be in business some 15 to 20 years down the road.

Viable Alternatives to Composition Shingle?

red-metal-shingles-roof-top

If you are in search of a long-lasting roofing system, consider a metal roof as an energy-efficient and long lasting alternative to asphalt.

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36 thoughts on “Roof Replacement Cost 2017-2018: Roofing Installation Prices per Sq. Ft.

  1. Katherine

    Well researched article! There is definitely a big difference in pricing from say the southern states to the northern states, especially when it comes to the cost of labor, even for your typical asphalt shingles. Prices can also fluctuate quite a bit, even within the same region, especially when there were some recent storms ravaging some areas, but not the others. For instance, some areas see great spikes in shingle pricing after a major hail or wind storm, where as a consequence, there are suddenly lots of roofs being replaced at the same time.

    Definitely sharing the article!

    Reply
  2. Greg Riley

    The article is 100% on the money. Sure, $2.75 to $7.50 is a wide range, but most jobs will fall somewhere in between. You’ll always have some contractors willing to charge “bottom of the barrel” prices just so they can get work and get by. But, as the saying goes, sometimes (not always) you get what you pay for. There are also many older roofs that have several layers of asphalt shingles baked onto the roof deck. In extreme cases, the old shingles can take a number of days to remove! Ask any roofer worth their salt and they will tell you that some tear-offs, clean-ups, and deck repairs can be so tedious that you’ll lose money on the job. — You’ll be up on the roof scraping the old shingles and pulling out nails for days on end, only to expose the deck that needs some new plywood, or smaller boards replaced here and there, and whatnot. Needless to say, the more complexity and labor a roof requires the more it will cost. No two roofs are exactly the same and if you ever had to roof over the towers and transitions such as the once on Victorian houses, you will surely understand why some roofs will cost more to work on than others. Oftentimes, you have to put in that extra time and effort to get it right, and that’s the reason why there is such a wide range in prices. Just my two cents…

    Reply
  3. Joe

    $750 a sq, that’s highway robbery. Actual roofing contractors, not the tear your head off type charge about $275 – $350 a sq total. You can get slate for $750 gees O Pete. Shingles and under-layment materials cost about $125 a sq, that’s a 10×10 area, labor is about $80 tops, so an honest business will make about a 40% margin. You do the math – wow $750 a sq, how does that guy sleep. A 30 sq roof would be $22,500. I will build you a garage for that and put a roof on your house!!!

    Reply
    1. The Roof Guy Post author

      All great points Joe and thank you for sharing your thoughts on this!

      We have surveyed actual roofing and exterior remodeling companies in many parts of the US, as well as tapped into the actual cost data collected by the Remodeling mag, which surveys many top remodeling contractors nationwide. Our research shows that most contractors will price their asphalt shingles roof replacement services at $4.00 to to $7.00 per square foot or $400 to $700 per square (100 square feet). To your point, though, we definitely agree that charging $750 per square is excessive, but that’s what actually happens in some areas; think San Francisco, Washington DC, and other places with exuberant costs of living, and hence doing business. The location, obviously plays a major role, and when all is said and done, replacement contractors in expensive areas have to pay an arm and a leg for their workers’ comp. liability insurance, and whatever other overhead costs they may have to cover as part of their day-to-day operations; sales, office expenses, standing by their warranty, etc.

      As far as the bottom-line price for a job is concerned, many homeowners would rather pay a bit more for a quality product and exceptional labor/service rather than try to find the cheapest guy in town. We find that the “real world” prices pretty much reflect that at the end of the day, most people ultimately care about the product and workmanship quality and dealing with a company that will do the job the right way from start to finish. Based on my experience in the industry and many conversations with homeowners, people are happy to pay more for the overall higher quality of work and ultimately their peace of mind. Sure, getting a great deal is great, but only as long as the crew doing the job is not cutting any corners in order to make the ends meet, which is often the case with companies working on razor-thin margins i.e. under-bidding their jobs and competing on price alone.

      Also, as a homeowner, I have to understand that I may be held liable for anything that happens on my property during the installation. Therefore, I’d rather pay more for a quality product and trusted service. I want to deal with a company that employs a well-trained crew and provides workers’ comp. for their installers. — There are way too many contractors that run a shady operation, employing illegal workers with no rights and no workers compensation. Those are the companies that often tend to cut corners, do sloppy work, have low safety standards, and are no where to be found when the warranty claims start coming in.

      It’s who you hire first, which should be the major point of consideration. The price you pay for the job is just as important, of course. I’d encourage any homeowner to focus on finding an honest and conscientious company so they can do the installation right the first time. — This may well involve having the discipline and willingness to do some necessary, and often tedious work, such as replacing missing/rotten pieces of wood in the deck, and treating homeowner’s property with dignity and respect in all phases from tear-off/work/clean-up, even when no one is watching — incidentally, this is exactly where many fly-by-night roofers will cut corners. 😉

      Reply
    2. Joe P

      I believe you are reading the article wrong, it’s $7.5 per sq. ft., and $750 per square, where a square is equal to 10×10 section.

      Reply
    3. Jim

      Yeah, right. You can build a garage for $22,000. LMFAO. Out of leggos? Get the f**k out of here, if you have no clue what you are talking about.

      Reply
    4. Carl R

      You are correct. My insurance estimated my roof at $9,100 for 30 squares or 3,000 square feet. I bought the shingles and all the materials for about $2,600 with my military discount at Lowe’s, and hired some roofers to do the work for $2,850 cash. So, the whole job was under $6k.

      Reply
      1. The Roof Guy Post author

        Hi Carl, it sounds like you’ve got yourself a great deal indeed and thank you for your service! 🙂

        I do love the fact that Lowe’s, and I believe Home Depot, are giving a 10% discount on building materials and other home improvement products to the US military personnel. Not sure if the veterans also get the discount.

        The important issue I see here, though, is that you sort of acted as your own general contractor and the roofers you hired were basically contracted laborers. In other words, your total cost was significantly lower than it would have been normally, because you sort of took on the responsibility of managing the whole process, from the purchase of materials and supplies to delivery and installation.

        I’m guessing it was an unwarrantied, over-top installation, with no removal/disposal of the old roof.

        Also, not sure if the building permit for the installation of a new roof has been pulled or not, but in order for the house the be insurable under homeowner’s insurance, the roofing job must have had a proper permit issued for it, and in many states a registered installer must have put their company’s name on the permit. This is certainly the case in many states, but some places may have less stringent building permit requirements.

        My guess is also that the roof was probably a fairly basic one, so the job could be completed in a couple of days or so, with no warranty provided. Surely, not a written warranty for which the company will stand and be there to address any workmanship issues in five years from now or so.

        I’m also assuming that it was a 3-tab (low cost) shingles, not architectural shingles used on the job.

        Lastly, you are probably not living in a major coastal city, where getting such a deal would be next to impossible.

        The bottom-line is that it seems in your case, the overall low cost of the job is a direct result of you actively managing the project and having the crew you found install the least costly product in a least-costly (value-engineered) manner.

        This is of course, a viable option provided you can manage to find reliable installers who will do the job the right way, while perhaps cutting some corners (necessarily so) in terms of having insurance and workers’ comp requirements met for the installers and for the job.

        Obviously, such a job will not have a real warranty issued to back the installation/workmanship quality in a case there are any issues with the rood later on. But, the upfront cost-savings may well be worth the hassle, if you are willing to take the chance, and have the stamina (and time) to manage the delivery of the project.

        Thank you for sharing your experience!

        Reply
        1. Stefan N Mach

          Just wanted to add that when a homeowner serves as the general contractor, they are required to have written documentation separating them from liability for the crew, and to do that in Maryland as an example, the homeowner would have to be an actual licensed contractor to make those doc’s stick.

          So, if hypothetically, a roofer had done a header and killed themselves, the man ( State) would have come looking for your workers compensation, which you would not have, and take your house and everything else you own instead.

          Sounds to me like you saved 3 grand and risked EVERYTHING ELSE YOU OWN! Super Smart. I am a licensed roofer and have seen this happen before. Roofing ain’t digging a hole in the backyard.

          Roofing is a top 10 most dangerous job in America. Never ever let anyone work on your property who isn’t licensed and doesn’t provide you with a written contract with the license number on it.

          Reply
          1. The Roof Guy Post author

            Thank you Stefan, you’ve raised some very important points!

    5. KB

      “A 30 sq roof would be $22,500. I will build you a garage for that and put a roof on your house!!!” REALLY?? You ain’t here yet? zip code: 47305

      Reply
    6. David Vernon

      I happen to agree with Joe. I am a sales manager for a local roofing company and I try to get as close to $225/sq. as possible (Shreveport, LA).

      Price goes up for decking replacement, steep roofs and upgrades, but our roofers are much cheaper here than up north, and ours are very loyal and darn good!

      We are fully licensed and insured, but care more about long term clients, since we are a full service contractor, rather than making a quick buck.

      We would rather net $1,500 and have a customer for life that sends referrals rather than one that’s willing to shop around in the future. We are small and don’t have much overhead or advertising costs. We pound the pavement, put the work in and do a good job to maintain a good name…all depends on the company and their structure.

      Personally, I’d show the door to any contractor asking over $400/sq… That’s an insane cost for an average replacement!

      P.S. $15,000 quote here for a 20×20 garage rebuild, so $22,000 to include a roof is absolutely possible on a house around 1,500 sq. ft. Might even upgrade to Architectural shingles with ridge vent.

      Reply
      1. The Roof Guy Post author

        Great, thank you for your comment David. It sounds like Joe has finally been vindicated! 😉

        So, I know you’ve mentioned you try to get as close to $225.00 per square ($2.25 per square foot) installed, as possible, including the warranty. — That’s for a three tab shingle roof, I assume.

        Now, what do you guys charge for a typical roof replacement per square in Louisiana for say; an average house requiring the removal and disposal of the old roof, some deck repair here and there, as needed, re-flashing chimneys/skylights, and installing architectural shingles over say deck armor underlayment, and ridge vent. — I imagine the storms are a real threat in Louisiana, so architectural shingles would be a preferred choice for a roof, since it will offer much better protection from the strong wind uplift. Thus, the new roof will probably last far longer than a 3-tab shingled roof.

        Thanks!

        Reply
        1. David Vernon

          That’s definitely for a 3-tab. I usually charge about $600-$700 for a 30 sq. upgrade to architectural shingles (30 yr). If a chimney flashing, etc. is needed and not covered through insurance, I try to just price it slightly over cost, as we try to make most of our profits on the roofing costs.

          My roofer charges me $0 extra for the tear off, so that is included. I’ll cover up to 2 sheets of deck sheathing, if needed. It’s $40 per sheet after that. $25 per 4 ft length of ridge vent, my roofer charges $0 to cut the ridge, but I usually pay him a little extra for the effort.

          Like I said, we’re a smaller setup. No large company with a big shop and overhead can afford to get away with those prices, so we often have the advantage if we get the business by walking an area, but we lose the advantage in advertising exposure, so it’s a toss up. Works for us though, 12 years strong!

          Reply
          1. The Roof Guy Post author

            Thank you for sharing this David. I am sure a lot of homeowners in your area will find this helpful!

    7. Jay

      In Florida on the coast, a metal or tile roof can cost upwards of $1,500 a square, plus there must be a minimum of a 2 by 6 top chord on trusses and 5/8 ” ply for the tile install.

      Florida has the strictest roofing laws in the nation. Asphalt felt requires a button tab every 4 inches, staples are not allowed! In a lot of counties in Florida, you are only allowed to use synthetic felt. No California valleys or weaves in Florida either! There’s a plywood inspection, then there’s a felt and flashing inspection before any roofing material can be placed on! Then a final inspection. And yes, the inspector lifts up the shingles to make sure they are nailed correctly and the nails didn’t sink too deep, 6 nails a shingle, pap, pap pap, pap pap, pap!

      Reply
      1. The Roof Guy Post author

        That makes a lot of sense, with the threat of storms and hurricanes hitting the Florida coastal lines, that roof must be installed right, which ain’t cheap. Thank you for sharing that Jay!

        Reply
    8. Nelson

      What gutter do you live in? Our cost is high $200’s per square. — That’s just the cost before any overhead or profit is even taken into account.

      Reply
    9. Scott Blake

      Slate is very labor intensive to install. Factors not mentioned are; insurance companies allow for additional height allowance if over single story, pitch allowance if over a 4/12 pitch

      Reply
    10. Ron Green

      In NY, and I am sure many other coastal states, insurance alone is a huge cost. Sure, you can do it cheaper, but lets see your insurance and workers’ comp. Good luck trying to retain good workers when you pay them pennies! 🙂

      Reply
    11. Greg

      I’ve been a roofing contractor for a long time and this is why you can never give a “per square” price on roofing. There are way too many variables. To say a 30sq up and over 4:12 ranch house should have the same per square price as a 30sq 3-story 12:12 pitch 3-layer asphalt tear off with cedar shakes and 8 dormers is crazy. That is where the range comes in. My jobs typically fall within that range but I can tell you that I’d be getting over $750 a sq for that last example.

      I typically do about 500 roofs per year and my company has been around a long, long time. The reason why is because we will not compete on price and my installers are paid well and highly valued.

      Reply
  4. Pingback: Types of Asphalt Roofing Shingles: 3-Tab, Architectural, Costs, DIY Options, and Pros and Cons - RemodelingImage.com - Remodeling Image: Ideas, Tips, and Practical Advice

  5. Jumping Jack Flash

    I remember being a teenager hung over from a night of partying, and my Dad making me get up on the roof the next morning and help him re-roof the house and garage.

    Thanks Dad! I’ve just saved a bundle on my own roof, from what he taught me. Doing it myself.

    Reply
  6. Ozzie Soderstrom

    I’m a 10 year-retired roofing and siding contractor who used to have 5 roofing crews working year-round in northern NJ. How we charged for a standard basic, roofing job was 3 times the total material cost to the nail, including a percentage for insurance. For example, if the total cost of materials was 125.00 per square w/ tax + 5% insurance workers’ compensation, then we would charge 3 times that per square of new roofing installed.

    Naturally, ripping off a roof, re-sheathing, etc. were extras. We basically still figure the same way. It was a fair and more competitive way of doing business. Everybody was happy. My sons now run the Company and still use the same system. We use a 4 times multiple system for the siding jobs.

    This works out fine. If you live in a million dollar home or a $300 thousands home, it doesn’t matter. Prices don’t change. We are a 4 generation company and are doing very well.

    Reply
    1. The Roof Guy Post author

      Hi Ozzie,

      Thank you for sharing your experience. It is always good to hear from a professional contractor! The system 33% / 66% split you described is pretty similar to the 40% / 60% split many contractors employ, where 40% is the cost of materials and 60% is the cost of labor, overhead, and contractor’s profit.

      The problem I see with this seemingly straight-forward pricing approach, arises when you upgrade from a basic 3-tab shingles to a more pricey 30-year or 50-year architectural/dimensional shingles, or even premium shingles. With these upgrades your material costs could be as high as $200 to $300 per square or $2.00 to $3.00 per square foot for materials alone. When you multiply that number by a multiple of three, you are now in the $600 to $900 or $6.00 to 9.00 range.

      My point is that such an overly-simplistic pricing approach is a lot more beneficial for the contractor who basically has to do the same amount of labor to install a premium roof, as they would have to put into the installation of a basic roof, but now the installation of a premium roof is being paid for by a homeowner at a premium rate. From a homeowner’s perspective this is not the best deal by any stretch of imagination.

      What would make more sense for more premium roofing installations, is for the cost of labor to remain more-or-less the same for standard, basic roofs, regardless of what type of shingles a homeowner ends-up choosing. Granted premium shingles weigh more, but that is hardly enough to justify charging three times the cost of all materials including taxes and insurance for the entire job, when a homeowner wants to go with premium shingles.

      By the way, premium asphalt shingles cost around $50-55 per bundle at Home Depot and you may need as many as 5 bundles for every square of the roofing surface, which is the case with Home Depot’s premium shingles. Thus, premium shingles alone will cost you well over $250 per square before you factor the cost of nails, underlayment, taxes, insurance, and other materials-related expenses. Assuming an average-sized home with 20 squares of roofing surface, we are now talking $300 x 3 x 20 = $18,000, which is a lot of money. — Keep in mind, this a fairly realistic amount for some contractors with great reputation to charge for their services. This pricing also happens to be in line with the remodeling expenses referenced by the Remodeling Magazine. The only problem with that pricing model, is that you can probably get a brand new metal roof installed for the same amount of money! 🙂 The upside with that would be an increase in the value of your property and no need to worry about replacing your roof again.

      My point is that such a simplified model is only fair for a basic 3-tab installation, but once you upgrade from that bottom-of-the-barrel product to more premium shingles, all of a sudden that model is no longer beneficial for a homeowner, but it surely now benefits the contractor more.

      Of course, contractors have to make money to remain in business, so I understand it from the business point of view. I really do. As many contractors will probably tell you over beer, “You just gotta make money on some jobs to justify lower profits associated with less profitable jobs, or jobs that are more complex/difficult to complete, but were erroneously priced as basic jobs”.

      Hope this offers a bit more perspective and insight into the mechanics of roof pricing methods, and how and why in some cases a homeowner may really end-up paying a whole lot more than they probably should for a premium shingles roof. My two cents.

      Reply
  7. Sharon O'Riely

    Is there a difference in replacement cost for manufactured home roofs vs. regular roofs?

    Severe wind damage took off about half of my roof. And the thing that goes over where the two parts of the house are seemed together, I am sure has been compromised.

    I am in Michigan, where you can wait for 5 minutes and the weather will change. So now, it snowed and I have 4 inches of snow sitting on my roof.

    Lots of questions. I just don’t know where to start.

    Reply
    1. The Roof Guy Post author

      Hi Sharon,

      Is there some sort of a homeowner’s insurance coverage on this manufactured home? If so, the insurance will cover any storm damage related work including ridge repair and installation of the new roof.

      Cost-wise, you are looking at some carpentry costs to repair the damage to framing / ridge based on what you describe, before a new roof can be installed.

      As far as the difference in costs, there is no significant difference that I can think of. Your total cost will depend upon the system being installed and the amount of labor required.

      If this is an asphalt shingles roof, then you should replace it with 30 year shingles, as it will provide better protection from the wind uplift than the 3-tab shingles. I imagine your roof had 3-tab shingles prior to the wind damage your home has sustained.

      You should start out by getting a few estimates from reputable roofers in your area.

      Reply
    2. Jack Krenshaw

      You are lucky if a mobile home roof lasts 5 years. We bought a Liberty Mobile Home years back and had to replace shingles a few years later. Not only that, but the workers were indifferent, we found whole racks of roof staples underneath the shingle tabs! You get what you pay for…

      Reply
  8. Jeffrey

    Around here, it’s typically $225 for roofing over the existing roof, and $275-300 for tearing off one layer puts you in the ball park with most companies. — And that is using a 30 year dimensional shingle.

    That is for the standard, walkable ranch or manufactured home. In other words, an easy, simple roof.

    I did the same thing the article did for my roof: just to get an idea where other companies were at.

    I have a cut to heck 6/12, for single layer tear off/replace with 30 year, four companies came in between $320-350 a square.

    One was $550, another $825

    Reply
    1. The Roof Guy Post author

      Hi Jeffrey,

      Thank you for sharing that!

      The prices seem all over the map, but pretty much within the range we outlined in this guide.

      Where are you located and was there any justification for the prices offered by the two high bidders?

      I know some companies, bid higher, initially, so they have “room” for discount.

      But, was it a longer warranty, fully-insured company / workers, or something else they had to justify higher prices?

      Reply
      1. Jeffrey

        The company that was $825 a square, quoted a total price of $18,500 to have the new roof installed. They offered me a $3,000 discount to sign that day. The salesman called me a month later saying he started his own business and would do it for $13,500.

        I could not find anything for either of the expensive companies to use to justify a higher price. They both used the same material as two of the cheaper companies and offered no better warranty.

        I am in the South West Washington State.

        Reply
        1. The Roof Guy Post author

          Interesting stuff, thanks for sharing that Jeffrey, I’m sure other homeowners in Washington state and pacific northwest will benefit from this!

          Reply
  9. Don Herrington

    I have been a roofing contractor in NW Pennsylvania since 1978. Then 3 tab shingles were $20 per sq. We nailed by hand and took pride in straight lines. I cannot tell you the last time we installed 3 tab shingles! They are only $10 a square cheaper than architectural, but they do take much more thought installing. Those lines have to come together when you meet back up again over a dormer, etc.

    Many, now 15 year old architectural roofs, have 3 tab caps that are shot, while the rest of the roof still looks good. If I had to install a 3 tab now, which I would not, the labor cost per sq will go up negating any savings on the materials.

    We just finished up a 28 sq two story combination. Tear off 1 layer that was stapled over plywood. It came off in trophy sized sheets. I made out because it came off and cleaned up so easily. The job before that was a nightmare. 1 layer storm nailed over 3/4 pine board. It was a 21 square roof and took 2 days longer to complete and clean up all the little pieces. My price up to 6/12 pitch starts at $300 square for one layer tear off. 7/12 and up slopes require roof jacks (some 6’s do also) — Those are more expensive. I check all step flashing to see if it can be re used. If I have to take off siding to re-flash the price goes up.

    I do not work in towns that require permitting and inspection such as Erie. When I get that roof off, it’s getting put back on pronto I am not going to set there with a crew waiting for the inspector while the clouds roll in.

    Reply
    1. The Roof Guy Post author

      Hi Don,

      Thank you for your comment, yes indeed, many professional roofers confess that it ends up being more expensive on their end to install a budget 3-tab shingle roof vs. a more expensive architectural shingle roof that does not require the “meeting of the lines” around dormers, etc. I cannot tell you how many crooked 3-tab shingle roofs I see all over, even on nice suburban homes. It’s mind bugling that some homeowners still choose the cheapest option which sometimes ends up looking really bad on roofs with dormers and valleys, where meeting of the lines definitely presents some challenges.

      All in all, it’s not just the product, but the quality of installation that carries the day.

      Reply
  10. Don

    Another thing I’d like to comment on is Ice Guard. In the past 10 years or so we have been doing some roofs that we did in the 80’s (you know you are getting old) We installed ice and water shield on the first 3 feet of the roof, but did not cover the ice guard with felt. Now try tearing off the shingles that were applied directly over the ice guard. They are absolutely fused together. The ice guard is fused to the deck as well. I have yet to come up with another solution besides these two:

    1) Cut the tabs off with a hook blade and leave the remaining shingle

    or 2) tear up the first 3′ of deck and replace it. 4 ft. if it’s modern sheeting

    Having this issue where ever ice guard was used and not covered with felt. Anyone have a better way?

    Reply
    1. The Roof Guy Post author

      Hi Don,

      I am sure that if you install synthetic underlay such as GAF by deck armor over the ice and water/ice guard, then the shingles won’t stick to the ice guard, as deck armor should stand the test of time as an in-between barrier. It may be a bit costlier to do it this way, but come the tear-off and re-roof time, there will be no shingles glued onto the ice guard, although the ice guard itself will still be there, of course to contend with. But, if it’s a properly vented roof, with no deck damage, then leaving the old ice-guard in place following the removal of shingles (which should be a breath with the underlay in place) may be plausible, depending on the particulars of the roof deck situation.

      As for the old shingles that were installed directly over the ice guard, well that one is just going to be the “mind over matter” kind of case. 😉

      Just my two cents.

      Reply

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