When it comes to home improvement projects, the last person you usually want to call is a maintenance professional. Why? Because maintenance repairs are an expense. Instead of adding value to your home, maintenance projects prevent you from losing value. In the end, a maintenance repair only helps you break even. While building a new deck or installing a pool is exciting, fixing your sewer line or foundation isn’t fun to think about.

Sadly, many people also think of roofing as a maintenance project, but that isn’t always true. While you may need to do some maintenance on your roof in the event of a hail storm or a fallen tree, a full roof replacement can actually add significant value to your home. In the same way a renovated kitchen or upgraded garage door adds value to your home in many ways, a new roof can provide your house with measurable improvement.

Unlike roofing jobs performed 50 years ago or more, the roofing industry is now much better equipped with options for different materials, styles, shapes, and even gutter designs. This not only provides functional and resale value but also adds aesthetic value.

While it may seem like a costly job up front, the return on investment for a new roof may be higher than you think. To decide whether or not replacing your own roof is the best course of action, let’s look at a few reasons you might consider it.

When should you replace your roof?

Deciding whether you should repair, replace, or leave your roof as it is all depends on a few key factors. The main question is this: Will it provide you with enough value to recoup the cost of the job and more? You can break that down into three areas of consideration by asking yourself a few questions.

1. Is your roof damaged?

If your roof is damaged in any way, you definitely should not leave it alone. If not repaired or replaced, continued exposure to the elements can cause significant damage to the rest of your home.

If the damage is minor, you may be able to simply repair the affected areas (especially if you don’t plan on selling your home any time soon). However, this also depends on the amount of damage present. That’s why it’s best to get a professional roof inspection before making any buying decisions. While hail damage may appear minor in photos, any roof with more than 20  damage spots within a 1000 square feet space usually requires a full replacement.

Even if you could get by with just doing repairs and you aren’t planning to sell, consider the personal investment. If there is already some visible damage to your roof, how much longer will it last until you need to replace it completely? A new roof could afford you many years of protection, not to mention a warranty to cover future repairs.

2. Do you plan on selling soon?

If you are planning on selling your home in the near future, this immediately adds more reason to replace your roof. Resale value is usually the most measurable form of added value your new roof can provide. In many cases, a new roof acts as a great selling point. In fact, according to a study from Homeadvisor, 32% of real estate agents reported that a new roof was a key factor in closing a deal. Other figures suggest that homes with new roofing systems sell twice as fast as those without new roofing.

If you aren’t planning on selling your home any time soon, you may not need to replace your roof right away. However, it’s best to not wait until things get bad to consider the project.

3. How old is your roof?

In any situation, the age of your roof matters a lot when considering a replacement. If your asphalt roof is 15-20 years old, that’s a strong reason to replace it. While it may last up to 30 years in some cases, your roof is more susceptible to severe damage and weathering the older it gets. Whether it’s cracks from wind damage or granule loss, damage to an old roof can become a problem much quicker than with newer installations.

To think through this, consider how much damage your roof might incur over the next few years. This can be hard to predict, but if you live in an area with high precipitation or strong winds, chances are that your roof will deteriorate much faster than areas with stable weather patterns.

Consider also when you plan on selling your home. If you are going to sell your home in five years, it might be best to replace your roof closer to that time so that you gain as much resale value from your investment as possible.

TIP: The best time to replace your roof is often considered to be between March and November. Cold weather in the off season makes it difficult to complete the job safely and effectively.

The roof replacement process

If you’ve never considered roof replacement before, it can sometimes seem like a daunting project. While you might be able to do it yourself, the best option is to contact a trusted roofing company to do the job well.

But it’s more than just signing paperwork and waiting for the crew to show up. You want to be sure that the roof replacement process goes smoothly and is done with enough quality to significantly improve the value of your home. To better understand how this works, let’s look at the process from start to finish.

Inspection and consultation

In any roof replacement scenario, you want to first obtain a trustworthy, professional opinion about what to do.

Once you find the right company to do the job, the process usually starts with a standard roof inspection. A professional will go up on your roof and inspect the areas in detail for any damage and wear and tear. They will usually compile an inspection report. Based on the initial inspection, the company you hire should also be able to discuss what your roof needs and the best options to add value to your home.

During this initial stage, you may also want to ask about your roof water management system (gutters). While usually overlooked, it’s important to consider your gutters as an essential part of your roof system. Improper runoff can cause severe foundation issues down the road. If your roof is already being replaced, this is often a good time to replace your gutters as well to match the new installation plus improve curb appeal.

Removing previous materials

Once you decide which roofing system works best for you, it’s time to remove the old materials and prepare the roof for the new installation. Modern roofs usually consist of three layers:

  • Roof Deck – The wood sheathing layer beneath the entire roof that sits directly on the support beams.
  • Underlayment – The layer of material (usually felt or paper) directly beneath the shingles intended for additional weather protection.
  • Roof Covering – The shingles, metal, wood, tile, or other material on the outermost layer of your roof.

When your chosen company starts the roofing job, they will start by removing all roofing materials down to the wood and inspecting the roof deck. They will then make sure that the roof deck is in proper condition to proceed with the project and repair anything if necessary.

For gutter replacement, the process starts by removing the previous gutters and inspecting the fascia for stability. By doing this, you check to be sure the new gutter system will hang tight on the roof.

Replacing the roof and gutters

When it comes time to install your new roof, it’s best to be informed about what materials will work best for your home. At Baltic Roofing, we deal with 3 major types of roofing materials:

  • Asphalt – This is perhaps the most common type of shingle used today, due to low cost and high level of protection.
  • Cedar Shake – In addition to its visual appeal, Cedar Shake shingles also provide good insulation and can last up to 30 years.
  • Synthetic – The main advantage to using synthetic roofing material is the long lasting stability. A synthetic roof will often last more than 30 years and the shingles can withstand high speed winds better than most other materials.

If you are also replacing your gutters, you will also want to consider which type makes the most sense for your home. At Baltic Roofing, we inspect your home and install gutters at the most strategic drain points. That said, we offer a few options for gutter installation:

  • Aluminum – Aluminum gutters are often chosen for their affordability and long-lasting high performance. They also tend to blend in well with the rest of the home.
  • Copper – While copper gutters are also durable, their main appeal is fashion. They may cost more, but they tend to add aesthetic value and look very distinct against the siding of most homes.
  • Gutter Guards – In addition to aluminum and copper gutters, we recommend gutter guards as a lasting form of protection against blockages from various debris.

Post-replacement inspection

Any time you go through with a roof replacement, your roof should be inspected professionally. At Baltic Roofing always inspect our roof and gutter replacement jobs according to our strict quality control standards and local building requirements, with the ultimate goal to make sure you are happy with the results as well.

Once complete, any good roof and gutter replacement should come with a solid installation and material warranty. Be sure to check into this before you purchase your roof, as this can add an additional level of value depending on the offer.

At Baltic Roofing, we offer a 10-Year No-Leak Guarantee on roof installations that transfers to any new owner. For our Leaf Defense Gutter Systems, we offer a Lifetime “No Clog” Guarantee.

ROI analysis of a new roof

Now that you understand a bit more about what goes into a roof replacement, how exactly does this apply practically to investing in a new roof? When analyzing the return on investment for a new roof, you’ll need to consider the cost of the project, the value it adds to your home, and longevity of the materials.

Cost of the project

Like many homeowners, you may be primarily concerned with the cost of a roof replacement up front. That’s perfectly reasonable. After all, you need to have the money to fund the project in the first place. But beyond that, cost is the base factor in any ROI equation. To understand the level of value your new roof can provide, you have to weigh that against the cost of the job. Most of the time it depends on the materials you use and the size of your roof.

For instance, consider a house that’s 1,700 to 5,400 square feet. With the average cost of asphalt/fiberglass roof replacement job in Chicagoland at $5.50 to $8.50 per square foot, the average cost of a new high quality roof replacement is about $32,000. However, this can vary widely depending on the project.

With that in mind, it may be tempting to choose the lowest bid you find from a cheap roofing contractor. However, a lower price roofing job usually indicates the contractor is cutting costs by carrying a “ghost” insurance policy, using less or poor quality materials, hiring unskilled workers, etc.. Although a higher price may seem counterproductive, investing more money in a high quality roofing job completed  by a trusted and established roofing company  will offer you a better experience while typically adding more value to your home overall.

Value of the new roof

Value is basically the other half of the ROI equation. Comparing the potential value increase of a new roof to the total cost of the project can help you predict and measure the success of your roofing investments.

In this case, the most evident form of value a roof can add to your home is in resale value. This is the increase in the appraised value of your home directly resulting from a new roof. According to the 2019 Remodeling Impact Survey from, a roof replacement can increase the value of your home by about 7%.

With the average cost of a new roof at $32,000, that leaves you with about $2,240 in net resale value. But that isn’t the only form of value you stand to gain. A new roof may also create an additional layer of insulation to your home and improve its ability to conserve heat. Since about 25% of the heat in your home is lost through the ceiling, a new roof that improves insulation can have a directly measurable impact on the amount you spend on utility bills. Long-lasting energy efficiency is certainly valuable whether you plan on selling or staying in your home for years to come.

Longevity of materials

When it comes to roof repair, you don’t just want to have increased value up front. You want that value to last for a long time. Even if you don’t resell your home immediately after the replacement job, a new roof can save you thousands of dollars in costly repairs due to unexpected leaks.

When considering a roof replacement, be sure to pick the materials that will provide the most lasting value for your budget and consider the company with a warranty that can protect your investment for years to come.

Final thoughts

There’s a reason why many people are thankful to have a roof over their heads. The roof is the most important part of your home. If the roof isn’t of good quality, the home suffers. That’s why it’s important to invest in a high quality roof that will add lasting value for many years to come.

But a new roof isn’t just a maintenance expense. Investing in a new high quality roof can increase the value of your home by improving functionality, energy efficiency, stability, and curb appeal for your property.

So, whether you’re planning on selling or looking to invest in the security and personal value of your home, a new roof is a wise investment. However, that’s only true if it’s done with exceptional quality.

When browsing for estimates, be sure to hire a trusted roofing company to do the roof replacement job with honesty, integrity, and respect for your investment. At Baltic Roofing, we’ll inspect your roof and help you choose the best roofing system and additional options to add the most possible value to your home. Contact us today for an inspection and consultation to see how investing in a new roof can benefit your property.

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