New Roof: Is It Time?

Your roof is a workhorse element to your home because your roofing is the first line of defense between you, and the elements all year around.

But, as Autumn progresses into winter months, and moisture and ravaging wind becoming more common, it may be time to consider the state of your roof. 

Writer, designer, and homeowner Jessica Ackerman talks about the business of deciding whether its time to repair your existing roof, or replacing it entirely to avoid more costly issues if you don’t.


I knew for a long time before I actually got my new roof that the inevitable was coming: A few leaks here, a few missing shingles there. Since I knew the project was going to be expensive, I blew it off for as long as possible. Perhaps you have been doing the same. But the roof is an all-important part of the home, and a significant part of the weatherproofing of the home. That leaking roof ended up causing more damage than I had thought in just a small expanse of time.

Roofing: repair or replace?

Sometimes you can patch your roof back together instead of going for a whole new roof, but you may be hard-pressed to find a roofer who will do patch work. When a leak occurs, it is sometimes difficult to find a roofer who will just repair a roof instead of replacing it.

This is usually because the roofer makes more money by replacing the roof. That’s not to say that all roofers are out to replace a roof that can simply be repaired. This is certainly not the main reason that a professional roofer will avoid repair work. Roofing repair takes quite a bit of time. The roofer has to determine where the repair is needed – which means the roofer needs time to investigate the problem.

You won’t see any “work” being done while he’s doing this, so many homeowners end up with sticker shock when the roofer bills them for the time taken to diagnose the problem in the first place. It is important that you let the roofer know that you don’t want to rush him while he figures out what’s wrong – if you plan to go with a repair job.

Roof repair: when is a patch not enough?

Fixing one problem often just masks another. It is often true that fixing a leak in the roof doesn’t make all leaks go away. Springing a new leak in almost the same place makes the home owner feel entitled to free repair. After all, didn’t they just pay for the leak to be fixed in the foyer ceiling?

While it is more budget-friendly to simply repair an existing roof, at least in the ‘here and now’, it can end up costing you more to put a band-aid on a problem that is not going to go away. If you consult with an honest roofer, they can assess your problem and let you know if a repair job is going to be sufficient enough to stave off other problems on down the road. If not, then opting for a replacement roof is your best and only option.

Of course, if you can’t afford the replacement of your roof, it may be your best option to make a repair to the roof while you save for a replacement.

Practical and visual benefits of a new roof

When it is economically feasible to replace your roof, you’ll find that a new roof adds a certain amount of curb appeal to your home that wasn’t there before you had the work done. A new roof gives your house a mini-makeover, making it look more modern and up-to-date.

I’m tickled with my new roof and sometimes wonder why I didn’t spring for it years ago. What’s more, I think the upgraded materials have helped to lower my energy bills. All in all, you can’t go wrong with a new roof for your home, your biggest investment!


Thanks, Jessica!

Artist Jessica Ackerman is a consultant with and describes how to decorate with large abstract wall art and wood wall art.



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