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The roof is one of the most critical parts of a house and represents a significant long-term investment. If your roof is damaged, leaking or nearing the end of its lifespan, replacing it with a new one may be the best option. You can choose from several selections based on the design of your house, your preferences and your budget.

Factors Influencing Price
The cost of a roof replacement will depend on several factors. The choice of materials is an obvious one, but the condition of the old roof is another important consideration. Sometimes, it’s possible to put a new roof right over the old one. In other cases, the old roof needs to be removed first, which increases the labor charges. A chimney, skylights or intersecting rooflines will affect the price because of the need for additional materials and added labor time.

Popular Roofing Choices
Asphalt is the most common roofing material due, in large part, to its affordable price. It’s made from fiberglass or other materials coated with asphalt and has sand-like granules on the surface. With proper installation and maintenance, an asphalt roof can last up to 20 years.

Wood shingles are popular among many homeowners because of their attractive appearance as they weather over time. While wood is a natural, eco-friendly option that can be treated with a fire-retardant, wood shingles are not permitted in some areas because of fire codes. Wood lasts about as long as asphalt, but is more expensive and requires regular maintenance.

Another option is metal. This roofing can be made to resemble other materials. Metal is popular among environmentally conscious homeowners because the shingles can be recycled the next time the roof is replaced. Even though it’s lightweight, metal roofing is strong. The price and lifespan vary depending on the type of metal chosen. Some metal roofs last up to 100 years.

Slate roofing is made from natural rock and usually comes in shades of gray. Since it’s made from a natural material, slate is also an eco-friendly choice. Because of its weight, the roof will need to be reinforced prior to installation. Slate is very expensive because of the high cost of material and the installation; however, it’s durable and can last 100 years or more.

Choose Carefully
When selecting a roofing material, you have several things to consider. Less-expensive materials may save you money in the short term, but you will need to replace the roof sooner than if you had used a more durable material. You need to consider the condition of the current roof, whether it needs to be removed and how much weight it can support. Think about how the new roof will look and whether it will complement the rest of the house. Consider whether the materials can be recycled, and find out if your local building code restricts the use of certain materials. Then, contact several local roofers to discuss your options and compare quotes.