Roof Replacement Costs for Asphalt Shingles, Metal & Flat Roofs

Typical Price Range To Install A New Roof Average: $4,190 - $6,740
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Putting a durable and long lasting roof over your house requires striking a fine balance between quality and price. This guide covers replacement costs for asphalt shingles, metal shingles, standing seam, corrugated metal panels, and flat roofs.

Across the US, the average cost to install a new asphalt roof on a 1500 s.f. single-story house is around $4800-7050 or $3.20-4.70 per square foot.

For comparison, installing an average size metal roof runs about $8250-17100 or $5.80-11.40 per square foot.

When shopping around for quotes, the majority of homeowners typically focus on the TOTAL roof cost, without considering how this figure is actually calculated. Too often, this lack of understanding results in spending way more than the roof is worth.

Later in this guide, I will also discuss why you should (in most cases) choose a contractor who is licensed, insured and has a good reputation with their past clients.

Average Roof Costs For:
Most Homeowners Spent Between: Most People Spent: $4,190 - $5,740 (For a 1600 sq. ft. Roof)
Low End
$3,931
Average
$5,148
High End
$9,371

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New Roof Costs by State

Here is a further breakdown of costs for each state in the US:

State:Asphalt Roof:Metal Roof:Flat Roof:
Alabama $4659$9919$9048
Alaska $6085$12955$11817
Arizona $5682$12097$11034
Arkansas $9305$19810$18070
California $7207$15344$13996
Colorado $5405$11507$10497
Connecticut $6729$14326$13068
DelawarePricing data is being collected
Florida $6892$14673$13384
Georgia $5176$11020$10052
HawaiiPricing data is being collected
Idaho $5280$11241$10254
Illinois $5859$12474$11378
Indiana $6363$13547$12357
Iowa $5575$11869$10827
Kansas $5602$11927$10879
Kentucky $5513$11737$10706
Louisiana $4555$9698$8846
Maine $7292$15525$14161
Maryland $7319$15582$14213
Massachusetts $7711$16417$14975
Michigan $5816$12382$11295
Minnesota $6447$13726$12520
Mississippi $6487$13811$12598
Missouri $4917$10468$9549
Montana $4877$10383$9471
Nebraska $6916$14724$13431
NevadaPricing data is being collected
New Hampshire $6487$13811$12598
New Jersey $6073$12929$11794
New Mexico $5481$11669$10644
New York $7936$16896$15412
North Carolina $5333$11354$10357
North DakotaPricing data is being collected
Ohio $5827$12406$11316
Oklahoma $4528$9640$8793
Oregon $6354$13528$12339
Pennsylvania $6262$13332$12161
Rhode IslandPricing data is being collected
South Carolina $4314$9185$8378
South Dakota $5682$12097$11034
Tennessee $5043$10737$9794
Texas $5141$10945$9984
Utah $5420$11539$10526
VermontPricing data is being collected
Virginia $6439$13709$12505
Washington $7821$16651$15188
West Virginia $6165$13125$11972
Wisconsin $10110$21524$19634
WyomingPricing data is being collected


NOTE: Prices above assume a 1500 s.f. ranch type house roof, with 1 layer tear-off, 1 chimney flashing, ridge vent, and other typical penetrations (for a flat roof assume typical 1500 square/rectangular shape roof).

Steep slope, extra layers of old materials, extra penetrations, and increased job complexity would increase these prices.

The numbers above, are real contractor prices from our local roofers directory. Our state-level prices are updated dynamically, as more contractors join our network.

See how these materials compare:

Roofing Shingles

Being the most popular material in the US, asphalt shingles are installed on as much as 75% of all steep slope residential roofs.

The average price to install 3-tab shingles in US is $3.49 per square foot, while laminates go for about $3.51 per square foot.

Install Asphalt Shingles Roof: (243,880 projects)
Roof size: 1490 sq. ft.
National Average Cost $5,279

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While there are numerous manufacturers and various quality/price levels of shingles, these can be easily classified as the following:

  • 3-tab shingles
  • Architectural (laminated) shingles
  • Premium / lifetime* shingles

3 tab and laminated shingles cost about the same to install. While material cost for 3 tabs is about $0.15 lower than laminates, the extra work required to keep the vertical lines straight, makes up for that difference.

READ: Complete Roof Shingles Installation Cost Guide for 2018

Premium shingles, such as CertainTeed Arcadia Shake, range from $5.29 to $6.90 per square foot. The main difference here is much higher material cost for the contractor, need to use special trim and flashing accessories, higher wight, more bundles per square, and more time needed to make sure vertical lines are straight.

* Lifetime: Lifetime is specified in the warranty of each product. However, in our opinion, “lifetime” is a gimmick!

Most manufacturers call their basic laminated shingles “lifetime”, and the premium shingles are also referred to as “lifetime”. The main difference is in the warranty and thickness of each shingle.

For example, a GAF Timberline shingle is about about 1/2 the thickness of GAF Camelot. Naturally, Camelot will last much longer than Timberline. Even when the top layer (granules) begins to disintegrate, the sheer thickness of Camelot will keep the roof from leaking for several extra years.

The big deciding factor here is attic/roof ventilation. If your attic is not ventilated, both Timberline and Camelot will “bake” too fast, become brittle and fall apart, long before their intended lifespan.

The same applies to basic and premium shingles from ALL other manufacturers.

Metal Roofing

If you want a truly lifetime roof, your best bet is metal. These roofs come in a huge variety of shapes, colors, and types of metal used in their manufacturing.

Install a Metal Roof: (62,238 projects)
Roof size: 1490 sq. ft.
National Average Cost $11,319

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From basic steel or aluminum to copper or zinc, and even Stainless Steel – the choices are numerous, and in the end – it’s all about cost. If you want better, you will have to pay more.

However, you don’t always need the best to get at least 50 years out of your roof (in many cases over 100 years life span).

On average, a metal roof costs 2.2 times more than architectural shingles or $7.44 per square foot. However, if we look at premium asphalt shingles VS metal – the cost is almost the same. To me, the choice becomes obvious – metal!

The vast majority of metal roofs installed in US are Standing Seam, Exposed Fastener (R-Panel) and Metal Shingles. Most of these are steel or aluminum, but can also be made of other metals.

ESTIMATE COSTS: Metal Roofing Calculator

R-Panel is the lease expensive, coming in at an average of $5.93 per square foot. However, this includes major metropolitan areas, where costs are much higher. In many rural areas, you can find these for as little as $3.50-4.00 per square foot.

If your are a DIY type, R-panels are also extremely easy to install, and you can buy the materials for about $1.75 per foot, and do the job yourself!

Standing Seam is arguably the most popular type of metal roofing, and can be installed for anywhere between $7 to $13 per square foot. We provide such a wide range because there are many factors at play here:

– type of metal
– gauge
– type of paint/coating
– job complexity

The cost of standing seam is extremely sensitive to how cut up your roof is. Much more so than all other types of roof coverings. If you have a simple ranch/barn type roof, installation will be a breeze, and your costs will be low.

If you have multitude of valleys, dormers, skylights, and other penetrations, your cost can easily double, and time to install can triple!

Metal Shingles are the most versatile type of metal roof, making it the easiest to install on complex roofs. This fact alone will significantly reduce your total cost compared to standing seam.

Metal shingles come in a variety of styles, from slate impressions to metal wood shakes, etc. They are typically made from steel or aluminum and come with premium paint/coating (Kynar/Hylar), in solid and multi-tone colors.

Metal shingles average $7.50-$12 per square foot installed.

Flat Roof Membranes

Low slope materials cannot be directly compared to asphalt or metal. If your roof has a low slope, you MUST use some type of a flat roofing membrane. Asphalt and metal are not an “equal” substitute, as they require a minimum of 3/12 pitch.

Install EPDM Rubber Roof: (38,786 projects)
Roof size: 1490 sq. ft.
National Average Cost $9,087

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While there are numerous flat roofing options, they can essentially be divided into 4 material types:

  • PVC
  • TPO
  • EPDM Rubber
  • Built-up roof (BUR) / modified bitumen

The first 3 are all considered “single ply” membranes, where as the last one is a multi-ply roof. BUR & modified materials are rarely used in US today, and in my opinion are inferior to single ply. Thus, we will skip these.

ESTIMATE COSTS: Flat Roofing Calculator

Among single plies, EPDM rubber is the most widely used type. However, it is quickly losing popularity to PVC and TPO which are white, heat-welded systems that have a much longer system life, and are easier to install/repair/maintain.

Rubber roofs cost an average of $6.16 per foot to install.

TPO materials come in at about $6.67 per square foot, while PVC is the most expensive of the three, costing $7.55 per square foot.

Now the question is – which one should you get? If you ask me – PVC is the clear choice, as it will last the longest, with fewest problems. Also in case of roof leaks, PVC is the easiest to repair!

TPO roofing is a PVC “knock-off”. Manufacturers tried to make TPO to be a cheaper version of PVC, with all the same characteristics. However, there are numerous problems with formulations, material and seam failures, etc.

Rubber is a whole different animal, as it uses glue to keep the seams together. When glue breaks down (and it will), the roof will begin to leak, and repairs will be very costly. By my estimation, EPDM rubber will cost you more than PVC to install and maintain within the first 5 years!


Average Roof Replacement Cost in US:

Low End
$4382
Mid Range
$5279
High End
$6599

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Cost vs. Quality

Why you need professional roofing contractor

Homeowner saved $800 on this roof, buy hiring the cheaper roofer. Now their roof looks like a painting of a 3 year old.

All too often, a cheap roof means that it will NOT last a long time.

When it leaks, a “cheap” contractor will usually not honor his warranty, and the cost of repairs or replacement will be on you.

The bottom line – a company needs to make money to stay in business, to be able to repair your roof if or when the need arises.

What you should avoid is saving a few bucks, only to face another re-roof soon after.

In fact, because most contractors compete on price, cutting corners has become the norm.

For years, the industry has been torn to shreds by uninsured crews hiring illegal labor, with very little expenses.

For honest, licensed and insured roofers, who build a reputation on doing excellent work, it has become immensely difficult to compete in such an environment.

In order to get enough work, many of these good crews have to drop prices. Moreover, to compensate for lost profits some also begin cutting corners and reducing the quality of their work.

How Contractors Determine Your Roof Replacement Quote

When giving a roof estimate, a typical pro looks at the following factors:

  • Roof size
  • Slope
  • Job complexity
  • Number of existing layers
  • New material to be installed
  • Underlayment and accessories
  • Material waste
  • Ventilation to be installed
  • Flashing work to be done
  • Trash disposal costs
  • Labor costs
  • Overhead costs (insurance / advertising / trucks /cost of doing business / etc)
  • Profit

Most roofers already have all these figured out, and adjust prices for each individual job, based on these factors.

A typical contractor has a base price per “square”. 1 square is an area of 10*10′ or 100 sq. ft., and is used in the industry to simplify communication between suppliers, architects, sub-contractors and customers.

On top of the base price per square, a roofer will add additional factors, such as complexity of the job, amount of flashing to be done, and other items such as ventilation, etc.

Let’s look at an example: typical roof – a ranch house that is 26 feet wide by 48 feet long, and has a pitch of 5 in 12. The size of such a roof is 1350 sq. ft. With waste of 10%, the contractor will need about 1485 sq. ft. (15 squares) of shingles or other material.

Cost of materials and labor

Whether the roofer calculates this job per square of roof area, or per square of materials to be installed, the overall number should be about the same.

First, the total amount of materials is calculated. On top of materials (usually shingles), he calculates the underlayment (felt or synthetic underlayment and/or ice and water shield), ventilation, flashing, and accessories (nails, caulking, pipe flashing, etc.) needed. This is the material price / square, needed for the job.

Having the cost of materials in mind, he already knows how long such a job should take, and how many installers + laborers he will need. This provides the cost of labor, including taxes and workers comp insurance.

cost of roof installation

Overhead

The cost of doing business, or overhead is what can differ the most among contractors. However, it is still similar for most licensed / insured roofers. Overhead will be higher depending on the type and amount of advertising done, office expenses, equipment / trucks / fuel, and the cost of Worker’s Compensation insurance.

Worker’s Comp can range from 25% to over 40% of the payroll, depending on the state in which the company operates and past incidents. If the company had on the job injuries, the Worker’s Comp rate can jump over 10% easily.

  • Think of it this way – an installer gets paid say $20 / hr. Working full time, that would be $48,000 / year. On top of that a 40% (or $.40 per dollar of payroll) would be ADDITIONAL $19,200 per year per worker, that a contractor has to pay just for worker’s comp insurance. In Massachusetts for example, a typical Worker’s Comp rate for ROOFING, starts at around 38%, before any incidents. If there are any incidents, it can easily go to almost 50%.

Let’s calculate a hypothetical contractor’s overhead cost

Lets say a contractor hires 1 secretary / office manager at $18/hr, rents an office / storage for about $1,000 / month, buys liability insurance for $7,500/year, and spends $500 / month on advertising, and about $200/ month on utilities, as well as $1,000/ year in office supplies and equipment.

On top of that, each truck insurance is about $1,500 / year, + $1,500 / year in maintenance and repairs. Fuel cost for an average work truck is say $4 per gallon of diesel fuel. Having a 15 MPG, and driving 30,000 miles per year, a truck will use 2,000 gallons of fuel / year, which is $8,000.

Here is the break down:

  • Office manager salary: $36,000 + 18% for Workers comp, taxes, unemployment insurance = $42,800 / year.
  • Office / storage rental: $12,000 / year + $2,400 in utilities = $14,400.
  • Advertising: $6,000 / year.
  • Insurance: $7,500 / year.
  • 2 Trucks: $9,500 / year * 2 = $19,000.
  • Office supplies: $1,000 / year.
  • Miscellaneous: $1,000 / year.

Total: $91,700 or $251 each day of the year!

Moreover, additional and UNAVOIDABLE overhead is income taxes. Uncle Sam takes 35% flat rate form any corporation, and then taxes personal income of the company owner.

There are ways to pay a lower rate, or avoid double taxation, using S-Corp, but still, most of the time, the personal tax rate of the business owner is around 35%.


Average Roof Replacement Cost in US:

Low End
$4382
Mid Range
$5279
High End
$6599

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Profit

Of course, any roofer wants to charge as much as he can get away with for the installation. However, reality dictates its own terms. Competition from other contractors who are uninsured, and do not carry any worker’s comp. insurance (or inadequate workers comp. such as SIDING, which is only about 13% vs. 38% for roofing trade) is tremendous.

Pros have to “sell” based on quality, against LOW PRICES. Meanwhile, most homeowners typically look at the total price (LOWEST PRICE), without much concern for what’s included in it.

With all the competition and expenses, a contractor needs to make at least 25% NET profit on each job to stay in business. He also needs volume to maintain an adequate income. If volume is low, net profit must be higher than 25%.

Profit can and will vary among different roofers, and will in great part depend on the volume. However, once again – a roofing company that does not make money will not be around to uphold the warranty – that is just how it is.

How Much Does A New Roof Cost?

Cost of a roof

Ultimately there is no magic number. The total varies greatly depending on your geographic location, as well as local economic conditions and competition.

However, we can look at the formula used in our calculator to see how much an average roof costs.

Materials and accessories

1. One square of Lifetime or formerly known as “30 years” architectural asphalt shingles is about $100. This is set to be increased by an average of 5-9% in the spring of 2013, as indicated by the “materials price increase” notices, that suppliers are now sending out to contractors.

2. Underlayment and accessories – another $40-50 / square.

3. Dump fees can range from $30-100 per ton (2000 lbs.) depending on where you live. 1 square of 1 layer of shingles weighs ~ 250 lbs., or 8 squares per ton. a 15 sq. roof is about 2 tons for one layer to be removed. A typical dumpster rental fee is $350 with 2-3 tons of debris allotment. If a roofer has his own dump truck, disposal cost is about 50-60% that of dumpster rental cost (includes salary of the driver and fuel).

Overall, materials are about $150 / square + $350 for dumpster + $50-100 for building permit. Read our complete Asphalt Shingles Prices Guide here.

Installation charges

If a typical installer gets $15/hr, a foreman gets $20/hr, and a laborer gets $10-12/hr, and you need say 6 guys to rip and install a 15 square job in one day, that gives you 5 guys * $15/hr * 8 hours = $600. Add a foreman at $160 / day, gives us $780 in payroll. Add another 65% (workers comp, unemployment insurance, payroll taxes).

The average cost of labor would then be $1,285 to install 1 roof.

I cannot overstate the importance of hiring an experienced pro! This is the single biggest mistake I have seen homeowners make time and again.

As a homeowner, you ideally want to install a roof that will protect your home for many years to come. However, even if you are willing to spend thousands of dollars on an expensive, high quality roof, it will still be ONLY as good as the pro who installs it.

The last thing you need is to replace your new roof within a few short years, just because you initially tried to save money and hired a sub-par contractor.

Overhead costs

As mentioned before, the overhead cost would roughly be $251 per day.

Total contractor cost to install a roof (15 squares)

Materials: $150 / square.
Labor: $86 / square ($1285 / 15 squares).
Overhead: $17 / square (assuming that a roofer does only 1 roof per day).
Dumpster + permit fees: $400 or $27 / square.

Total contractor’s cost: $4,186 to install a typical 15 squares ranch house roof, or $279 / square, before ANY profit.

If we consider that a roofer makes an average 25% NET profit on each job, before taxes, then our hypothetical roof above would yield $1,046 in profit. Total cost of this job would be $5,232 or $350 per square.

Average Roof Costs For:
Most Homeowners Spent Between: Most People Spent: $4,190 - $5,740 (For a 1600 sq. ft. Roof)
Low End
$3,931
Average
$5,148
High End
$9,371

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Roofing labor cost per square across the US and Canada

It just so happens that in most places and according to most roofers that I’ve spoken to, the average cost per square that they charge ranges between $250 and $400 / square, so our calculation of $350 / square falls right in the middle of that average.

Our cost calculator formula is in large based on these calculations. It also takes into account additional items, such as chimney / skylight flashing, different roof slopes, houses that are 1, 2 or 3 stories high, different materials, and overall  job complexity.

Therefore, you will get different “prices” depending on your home’s conditions.

To figure out how roofing costs vary based on where you live, see our local roof prices guide.

Other factors affecting installation prices

re-roofing

Among many factors that can impact how much you will spend on a new roof, a major one is your geographic location. Depending on the area, cost of living, as well as local economic conditions, contractor labor rates can be significantly different.

For example, $15 / hr in Boston or NYC is probably a bare minimum on which a working person can “survive” because of high rent and food / clothing prices. However, somewhere in the Midwest, or recession-torn areas, $15 / hr, can provide a person with a very decent level of comfort. Additionally, in urban areas, cost of materials, insurance and other overhead costs are typically higher than in suburban “away from civilization” places.

On top of local costs of living, there are many uninsured roofers, who hire illegal workers, and have a much lower overhead. Therefore, it’s not uncommon to see prices for a new installed roof to be around $250-275 / square even in the Boston / NY / NJ / DC stretch.

Regional Roofing Price Differences in US

Regional differences

Keep in mind that roofing prices and contractor’s costs differ depending on the region. For example, in the Midwest and the south, prices are impacted in large part by the insurance companies.

This is because there is a lot of insurance work there, due to storms.

Thus, prices are much lower than in the Northeast or the Pacific regions.

Here is a separate article about insurance work, and how it affects the roofing market as a whole, the quality of work, and price levels – How Insurance Companies Manipulate Residential Roofing Prices

Price data updated on Jul 10, 2018. State level prices are updated daily, to reflect real time prices of roofers in our directory.



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This roofing guide is presented by Leo B.

I've been a roofer for 15 years, and specialize in Metal Roofing and Flat Roofing.

Have a roofing question or issue? Ask me any roofing question!

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44 comments on “Roof Replacement Costs for Asphalt Shingles, Metal & Flat Roofs

  1. I really appreciate your advice to look for a roofing company that is licensed and insured. It’s good to learn that doing so will help us ensure our roof is installed properly and will last for the advertised amount of years. We’ll start looking into local roofers that can redo the sections that have started curling and falling off in the past few months.

  2. Thank you for explaining that the average roofing cost for my state is between $5,000 and $9,000. I didn’t realize that metal roofs cost more to install. This makes sense because they are longer lasting. Maybe I should look into a roofing company to see if this is a good installation for my house.

  3. I really appreciate your information that the average cost for labor to install a new roof would be $1,285 and that this would be added to the materials cost. To me, this is a sound investment because a quality roof will both increase your energy efficiency and keep you safe. This cost estimate makes me wonder if the average pricing of a roofing service can help you determine if they are a reputable company, or if it is best to read their online reviews.

  4. Our roofing is getting around 20 years old now and I have started noticing a lot of small leaks and curling in the shingles. My husband and I would like to look into a roofing service to replace the roof. I wanted to check to see what material would be best to go with and I’m glad I did; your information that a metal roof will last a lot longer than a shingle roof is really helpful.

  5. I just started a roofing business with my husband. Right now we are working as subcontractors. We only get paid 3/4 thousand, maybe less, per house. I am interested in learning how to find work on our own. I also would like to know about how much we should charge. Long road ahead of us, but i am willing to do whatever is needed to learn. Thanks!

    1. Ruby,

      I was in your position 13 years ago, so here is what I think:

      • First – start here: https://www.roofcalc.org/roofers/ – Sign up for our Local Roofers platform – you will begin getting free roof leads (soon).
      • Next – get a website.
      • Next – create a Google Plus local listing as well as a Facebook page
      • Advertise on Craigslist – do a few jobs for cheap (probably still more than you get as subs). Do really good work (always), and ask clients to leave you reviews on G+ and Facebook (preferably while you there – otherwise they will forget) ..
      • Blog on your website (basically homeowners ask you questions about roofs – answer them on your sites

      If you stay consistent, you will get more work and grow. Starting out is the most difficult part.

      PS – we will have ways for contractors in our Local Roofers portal to submit blog posts here, to get more exposure for their companies.

      I don’t know how much you should charge – figure out your costs, and profit you want to make, and come up with a square price. Also, add extra charges (per square) for tear-off, steep slope, dormers, plywood, etc.

      Best of luck

  6. So I have looked through several different sites and if I am understanding correctly the average cost in East North Central is around $100 per square for tear off and $100 per square for installation. Is this right?

    My husband is taking on a huge load of roofs and I believe the owner is trying to get him to take way too little $ for the jobs. He just did a 16 square home for $3000 labor cost and she is telling him that he charged too much. However, from everything I read he is actually right on average?

  7. I am roofing contractor and this is one of the best posts I have read till now. Its so true!!

    People look at the total price and they think all that money will go into the roofer’s pocket, and have no idea about the cost of doing business.

    And don’t forget another huge expense: the cost of leads from Home Advisor. We pay $150 per lead to get a homeowner’s information and we are not even sure if we will get the job! But this works out during busy times, like Christmas.

    1. Alex, you pay $150 for a roofing lead to Home Advisor? I thought the most they charge is $69, I guess prices went up.

      Do you find work any other way besides HA?

      In any case, there are many other ways you could find clients. Like update your company site – I looked at it and it looks like 1998 🙂

      We are also going to launch a pilot program to connect roofers with homeowners. Let me know if you are interested – leo @ roofcalc.org

      Leo

      1. Hi Leo,
        I just started a roofing company and I am interested in the program you are speaking about. How can I get the info on it?

      2. Mike – I will get in touch with you soon – we will be rolling it out this month!

        If I don’t contact you – email me – leo @ roofcalc.org (no spaces).

        PS – do you have a site for your roofing company?

        Leo

  8. This is hands down the most informative site I’ve come across in my roof replacement cost research. Thank you Sir!!!

  9. I’m a painting contractor in the home improvement business. I got a contract that requires me to subcontract a roofing job and I needed to get some general knowledge about roofing. Thanks for the information and keep writing.

  10. Hi,
    I got several quotes to replace my 21 year old shingle roof in Ann Arbor MI. All of them seem to be 20-30 percent higher that what your estimator gives me for my roof. Any idea what gives? I think that my roof is rather simple to redo. I would appreciate your input.

    Brenda

    1. Brenda,
      You need to provide more information for me to answer. It could be that you have wood rot, or something that causes this 20-30% increase in quotes that you get … maybe the heights, or the roofing material …

  11. Finally somebody that knows what I deal with on a daily basis, giving estimates. So many potential clients say: well, I talked to somebody that will do it for this, and I try to explain that you get what you pay for. I have been in business since 96 and the only reason I can compete is because I still roof a lot of my roofs along side my crew. This saves me 300-400 a day in payroll alone. Also, I subcontract from contractors a lot. If I can get 75.00 a square for most roofs, I can still make a profit. I do pay $1800 a month for liability and work comp, not for myself though, I can’t afford that. I wish more homeowners would see this site, because they don’t have a clue what it takes to operate, so I’m gonna pin this site and the next time they say I can get Joe Blow to do it for this, I am gonna have them check out this site. Thank you.

  12. I tried to charge similar rates in my area, but found that everyone uses the “going rate”, which isn’t enough to cover my expenses, let alone make a profit. I now stick to commercial work were having workers comp and liability insurance is the norm and not the exception.

  13. Wow….I really appreciate your posting. It’s really informative for me. Hope you update more often and share what you know. Thanks.

  14. I appreciate such detailed information in this post. As a woman who lives alone, I feel that if I study this info, I will have a lot more confidence talking to roofing contractors and negotiating prices without fear. Thank you so much, I will put this in my favorites.

    1. Hi Inda,

      Thank you. We wrote this guide to help homeowners understand how a roofing business works “behind the scenes” and how you can avoid getting scammed and overcharged. Cheers!

  15. Beverly,

    Alex’s comment seems to be accurate. As far as the drip edge…that’s just poor supervision on the roofer’s part. Ran out of material?…couldn’t put it on, because? The bottom line is, it doesn’t matter what the excuse is, they should have finished it properly. Sorry to hear about your bad experience…we’re not all bad guys 🙂

  16. Hi,
    My contractor gave me a total new Timberline 30 yr roof replacement estimate for 15 1/3 squares, that includes an additional extra charge for a “high roof” of $75.00 per square. The house is 2 stories, 2000 sq ft living space. Is this amount, an extra $1,150.00, much too high? Also, NO Metal Drip Edge was installed in the rear, causing water to drain against the siding and foundation. Should the Drip Edge be included in the total roof replacement cost, (no extra charge)? Thanks.

    1. Hi Beverly,

      2 stories is not really “HIGH” … but 3 stories is. A typical up-charge for 2 stories is $30-50 / sq. However, this also depends on the total cost. Maybe, this was included in the total TWICE?

      As for drip edge – yes it should be included all around … that’s what manufacturers specify. However, it’s not always installed. But, if it’s included in the front, it MUST be in the rear as well, free of charge.

      Regards

  17. For people looking for pricing on Flat Roofs like EPDM, TPO, PVC, the price starts with the system you are taking off and what type of roof deck is there. If you have a structural concrete deck, the price will go up on the removal process. If it’s a metal deck, then the cost will go down. This is the same for labor cost to install the ISO board. It’s cheaper to install over a metal deck (no pre drilling). The cost of tapered insulation is much higher then flat ISO. So it’s impossible to have a basic price per SQ; every job is different.

    Copper standing seam as a rule on new construction using 20oz copper 8/12 pitch and Grace underpayment on the deck will average 800 per sq.

    Hand split cedar white cedar or red with grace underpayment and 30lb felt at each coarse will be 700-825 sq.

    These are just my opinions and should not be used in any estimating.

  18. If you are in NY state with the labor law 240-241 coverage on your GL insurance, then you better jack those numbers up on the labor end by another 50 per sq. A typical 2 story 8/12 pitch roof will go for around 450 per sq in central NY state, if you are properly insured.

    1. Kate,
      Try getting a free roofing estimate here – not sure about “low price”, but should be very competitive. However, low price usually means lower quality, so consider that.

      Good luck

  19. If you want to install a new roof, it may be a good idea to create a spread sheet that breaks down in detail all labor and materials costs.

  20. Quite informative and useful. It would be even more so, if you added a rough cost comparison among the various roofing types, i.e. standing seam, shakes, asphalt, tile, etc.

    1. Hi Tim,

      Thank you for your feedback. We are working on a post with such a comparison. In the mean time, you can check out our Metal Roofing Costs guide, which covers Metal Shingles, Standing Seam, Corrugated Steel, and Stone Coated Steel roofing.

      Best regards

  21. Hello Gordon,
    Something is wrong:
    2272 sq feet / 155 hours =14,6
    14,6 x 8 hour day=116,8 sq feet per 8 hour day

  22. You are pretty much spot on here. I don’t understand why so many people want to challenge what is written here. Overhead is an important number. A quarter of my roofing business is repairing other companies mistakes that gave the homeowner a 10 year warranty and then went out of business, two years after the install.

    My brother scraped all of my ceilings, retextured them and painted my entire house for the cost of the materials…..hence the reason that I didn’t look up how much it would cost to hire a drywall contractor. 🙂

    Thank you for informing people that might otherwise have no idea. I am going to direct my potential customers to this site, so they have a better understanding.

  23. I hired my brother in law to do my roof. He has never done a shingled roof before, but wants to call himself a contractor, though he is not. He spent 155 man hours to do 2272 sq feet roof and charged me $2520. They averaged 122 sq feet per 8 hour day. what would you say to him?

  24. My name is Bryan Parker. I own small roofing business and a 40×20 roof is only 8 squares. It also depends on what yo have for protrusions, and for waste. I would say to get 9 square which is 27 bundles. My business is **** roofing services and I am insured with photos and references available on request for every job I have ever done. I am willing to travel and would be more than happy to do it. I charge very low prices and work with the customer.

    1. Bryan,

      First – you don’t know how to count! A 40×20 roof also has a slope, which typically adds 15-40% to the total roof area! This is before waste.

      Second – this website is to educate homeowners – not for blatant self-advertising.

      Thanks.

  25. I would like to replace my asphalt shingle roof. How much will it cost to install new shingles on a 40′ x 20′ roof, about 1,500 sq ft?

    1. Reinaldo,

      15 squares seems too much for 40×20′ roof … unless you have wide overhangs.

      You can just plug those numbers in to the calculator, and it will give you an approximate cost.

      We do not replace roofs or do “estimates”. This tool is merely for homeowners to estimate an APPROXIMATE cost of roof replacement.

      1. Sssssoooooooo.
        If I have all of the materials….tore off old roofing myself…on a 3/12 slope…5.5 square…and paid a ROOFER $200 to do 2 hrs work…you say Im underpaying him. No taxes…cash under the table
        $200 isn’t enough?
        The same roofer did the other half of my roof for free…Nice Christian kid. I offered him money but he only accepted a glass of iced tea.
        Tell me if I’m missing something here.
        He did the other half in 92° afternoon for nothing.
        He will get $100 an hour in 62° weather.
        If a roofer gets $3000 to apply comp roofing on a 26×40 roof…I’d say that’s overpaid. This is my own materials supplied. Asphalt, Architectural
        Shingles, staples, and coil nails. My gun…my compressor. The kid is excellent and does over 3 square per hour. I wouldn’t pay anyone $30 per square. Even the top lead only gets $20 per hour.
        Where is the justification for $3000 on a roof this size when the only labor is applying the material?
        As a 40 year veteran carpenter…I’m in the wrong business.

      2. Patric, I’m not saying you are underpaying. But reality is, most homeowners won’t tear of their own roof, and be able to find a roofer to do the work for 200 bucks.

        You see – if you start calculating costs and profits as a roofer, and take into account all the overhead, $3000 won’t seem like a lot. Being a roofer and having odd $200 jobs won’t get you far. Roofing is a job/business, and roofer needs to make money to put food on the table.

        I’m sure you don’t work for free at your job, and want to make more money. So why can’t roofers want the same? It’s a cut-throat business with all the uninsured hacks, screwing the homeowners, who want “cheap”….

        And here is your justification for $3000.

        Material price alone for that roof is about $1,570 nationally and $1,421 in the cheapest market (26×40 roof with 5 pitch) … this takes into account all required accessories, and waste.

        Now roofer has to pay 3 guys to do your roof… say at $20/hr each (you can’t find roofers today who will work for less than $17-20/hr). Say they work 8 hrs – that is $480. Roofer also pays 40% Worker’s comp, which would be about $160. Then dump fees would be $100 MINIMUM, if roofer has a trailer. Otherwise dumpster will cost $250 – 400 depending on region.

        And so here we have it: 1421 + 480 + 160 + 250 = $2311 just in straight up costs. Then there is roofer’s time to do the estimate OR salesman’s commission, building permit, liability insurance, gas, advertising, etc. And again roofer needs to make a buck as well. So $689 has to cover ALL THAT.

        And now you say roofers are greedy?

        Coming back to your $200 guy … most homeowners won’t find that guy to do their roof. If homeowners get uninsured roofers to install their roof, their will save $160 on Worker’s Comp and maybe $200 in materials, but then homeowner will be stuck with crappy roof that will leak in a year or two … is that worth saving $300-400 to you???

        Hey if you don’t want to pay your guys more than $20 that’s your business. I don’t know where you live, but in Boston, roofers make a minimum of $20, and most won’t get their butt off the couch for less than $25 … union roofers start at $39/hr

        Anyway we can spin the numbers anyway we want, but by cutting costs and paying guys less, you screw the homeowner – that is the reality.

        Good luck to you.