Replacing the roof on your commercial property is a big commitment. Although it should only take a couple of days from beginning to end, the disruptions the project causes can impact your business.
If your roof is old and worn or has recently been damaged by a storm, then you really can’t afford to delay getting this done. Your roof is your first line of defense against the elements, and leaks or poor insulation can cost you a lot more than a new roof ever will.
Things to Consider When Replacing Your Roof
When you do replace your commercial roof, here are a few things to consider throughout the process:
Materials = Cost
When you’re replacing a roof, especially on a commercial property, the biggest question is always, “how much is this going to cost?”
Well, as you might expect, the answer to this is “it depends.”
Mainly the materials you choose to use for your new roof.
As a business owner, you may be tempted to opt for more economical options. For some, this may work. But if you operate in an area with a harsh climate, the savings you get in the beginning will evaporate as your roof wears down more quickly over time.
Smaller commercial properties may be able to install asphalt shingles, which are what is found on most homes. These are both inexpensive and durable; a shingle roof can last 30 years or more.
Metal is also an option, as are tiles, the preferred commercial roofing material in cold climates.
For larger properties, flat roofing may be necessary. Modified bitumen is on the low end of things, but EPDM and PVC roofing offer better protection against sun and heat, as well as moisture.
In the end, the more durable the material the more expensive it will be, driving up the total cost of your project. You don’t need to go overboard. But, generally, investing in the highest-quality material will be to your benefit in the long run.
As you start to plan this project, keep in mind that noise will be a real factor. There simply isn’t a way to replace a roof without making a racket.
Depending on the nature of your business, this may or may not matter. Gyms are probably fine. Bookstores should consider closing.
The whole project shouldn’t take more than a few days, but if prolonged banging and drilling sounds will disrupt your business, plan accordingly so that it’s as little of a disruption as possible.
A big decision you will need to make at some point in this process is whether or not you want to remove your old roof or apply the new one over it.
You can only ever have two layers of roofing at a time. So if there are already two there, you have no choice but to remove the old roof, though you should really consider doing this every time.
The issue with putting a new roof on top is that it will not address any underlying issues with the roof. If there is a soft spot or some structural damage, you won’t know unless you take off the old roof.
To ensure the long-term health of your building, it’s best to start fresh with a high-quality roof.
The State of the Frame
If you do opt to have the old roof removed, make sure your roofing contractor spends some time looking at the state of the frame underneath. If there are any issues, this is the perfect time to address them. It might prolong the overall project duration, but it will prevent you from having to undertake another big one down the line.
The point of replacing your roof is so that you don’t have to again, at least not for a very long time. Modern materials are built to last multiple decades, and if they don’t, you’re entitled to some assistance.
As you’re choosing your materials, make sure to ask your contractor about the warranties that come with the products they are selling. In general, the longer a company is willing to guarantee the quality of their product, the better it probably is.
Also make sure to ask if your contractor offers any warranties on their work. If something goes wrong because of what they did, you shouldn’t have to pay for that.
These are conversations that can really only be had before the project begins, so make sure to bring it up early so that everyone is on the same page.
Another thing you want to be on the same page about is insurance. Roofing is a somewhat dangerous job, even though a true professional takes all the necessary safety measures to make it as safe as possible.
Still, accidents can happen to the best of us. Make sure your contractor has a liability insurance policy that covers them and their employees in the event anything does happen while they were replacing your roof.
This is extremely important. Do not start work until you’ve verified this information.
In fact, in most cities and towns, you can’t start working until you’ve verified insurance, as well as completed some other paperwork.
For example, most municipalities require you to get a building permit, as well as a written work contract, and, here it is again, proof of insurance.
You definitely don’t want to start a project without being fully compliant, so make sure your paperwork is done. Your roofing contractor should be on top of this, too. But it’s also your responsibility.
Make sure to ask your roofing contractor what they plan to do with the waste they generate. They should have some sort of haul out service that removes the old roof properly (depending on how old it is, you may need to follow special disposal procedures).
This is where it’s important to have a good work contract before starting. You don’t want to get near the end and have any surprises. Make sure everything is detailed out before you begin to keep everything in order.
Get Started with Your Roof Replacement Today
While there are a lot of things to consider when replacing your commercial roof, you shouldn’t have to go it alone. Work with a professional roofing contractor who has the experience needed to do these jobs right, such as Kingdom Roofing. Our team of experts will help you come up with a plan and get your new roof on in no time. Get in touch today for a free quote.