What You Can Expect from a Roofing Estimate

What You Can Expect from a Roofing Estimate


Making sure you are informed about the roofing experience

Now that you’ve found a couple of roofing contractors to interview, it’s time for the roofing estimate. Some people get multiple estimates and compare quotes while others go with the first contractor they contact. It’s up to you, but whomever you choose to hire, check their credentials and customer reviews. Also, keep in mind these points when going through the roofing estimate process. The more you know about what’s involved in a roofing estimate, the better.


It’s a good idea to interview the roofing contractor first. Here are a few questions to ask a roofer before you hire them:

  • Do you guarantee your work or offer a warranty?
  • Do you have insurance?
  • May I see homeowner references?
  • Are you licensed as a roofing contractor?
  • Do you use subcontractors?

How long a roofing estimate takes

The actual estimate itself will take on average 30 minutes to an hour. You don’t have to be present but it is advisable in case the roofing contractor needs to see inside the house for a leak. After the estimate is complete, it may take up to ten days for the contractor to get you the roofing quote for the job. When contacting contractors, keep in mind that they should contact you within 48 hours with a bid.


Get the estimate in writing

If you’re making an insurance claim, you’ll need to get a roof repair estimate in writing. If you’re not making a claim, still consider getting the estimate in writing. It’s a good idea to do so. The estimate will include the nature of the roof damage, the repair needed, and the estimated costs for the repairs which should include labor and materials. If this is for an insurance claim, make sure the wording is legible.


Additional costs can be incurred if the roofer finds more damage when opening the wall or pulling back the shingles. The extra costs should be documented in the written estimate, so you will not experience sticker shock as the roof repair process begins. Also, if the roofing contractor gives you a non-written estimate, consider moving on to another contractor because they may not be the best fit for the job.


What to look for in a roofing estimate

The roofing estimate should be a detailed description of the project that includes the roofing materials to be used, the underlayment type, nail sizes, fasteners, and locations for flashing. In other words, the estimate should describe in detail the work itself and the materials to be used on the project. Remember, the lowest priced contractor isn’t always the best one. In fact, some contractors may not be including everything in their estimate. Some may be only quoting the shingles. Most homeowners only see the total project cost without itemizing.


You should ask the contractor to itemize their estimate and include all of the essentials of the roofing project which include the following:

  • Removing old roof
  • Installing underlayment and new shingles
  • Flashing, kick-out flashing, and counter flashing
  • Work on or around the chimney
  • Lead pipe jacks
  • Ridge, box, and flapper vents
  • Water barrier
  • Gutters
  • Dump fees

Once you get the estimate and you’re happy with it, discuss payment with the roofing company. Never pay for the roofing project upfront. Paying a deposit is appropriate, but not the full amount until the entire job is complete. With these tips and knowledge of roofing terms, you’ll be well prepared for dealing with roofing contractors and the complexities of roof repair and structural issues.


Need Help?

If you would like to ask an experienced roofing contractor about roofing estimates, please call us today at (919) 589-7290. We can explain the roofing estimate process and answer any questions you may have about repairing or replacing your roof.

Scroll to Top