Every roofing job is unique
It goes without saying (but we’re saying it anyway) that choosing a contractor when it’s time for a new roof should be based on more than price, and that no two contractors’ estimates will be the same.
Roof replacement estimates generally comprise three major cost components: materials, labor, and overhead, the least stable of these being materials. In fact, in the area that TSW Roofing Solutions, Inc. serves, the cost of roofing materials rose about 20% in the second half of 2018.
Various factors influence materials prices
The cost of materials can rise quickly and significantly. For example, the asphalt in the most commonly used roofing shingle is an end product of the oil refining process. Therefore, the cost of oil relative to both transportation and production affects the price of shingles and other materials to our suppliers and to us. Government policies have an additional adverse effect on materials costs in the form of tariffs, which can cause speculative price increases to consumers in anticipation of tariffs, as well as actual price increases once the tariffs are in effect. Bad weather plays a part, as well. When a bomb cyclone happened across Maryland in March 2018, wind gusts of 59-71 MPH caused substantial roof damage. Then, from May through July, rainfall of up to 300% of normal drenched the Mid-Atlantic area.
Demand for roofing services and materials quickly outpaced supply, driving up prices and causing a significant backlog.
Skilled labor and hourly rates
Labor costs also follow supply-demand principles, and can be affected by several different factors. A quick search for roofing jobs in Harford County, Maryland, on Indeed and on Monster.com yielded at least 14 major residential roofing companies in need of mechanics. Hourly rates range from $15-$35 based on skill level and job description.
Overhead covers every expense that keeps a company open and able to do business. Contractors use various methods to assign a percentage of overhead to each job.
What about per-square pricing?
Per-square pricing is basically an average price that does not take job complexity, variables, and details into account.
TSW Roofing Solutions knows from experience that every roofing job is unique, and so is every cost estimate.