There are several angles to consider when looking at commercial roofing costs. While there is the upfront capital investment, the long-term maintenance and lifecycle costs also must be considered.
When analyzing commercial roofing costs, the long-term costs are often more vital than the initial investment. An investment in a high-quality commercial roof with excellent workmanship may be more expensive at first, but it will minimize future maintenance and repair expenses. It may also last longer than a roof constructed with lower-grade materials and unskilled labor that seems to cost less initially.
On the other hand, the number of years you intend to occupy the building may also influence your thought process. If you don’t expect to have the facility for many years, you may not recoup the costs of the new commercial roof.
There is no “one-size-fits-all” solution when it comes to commercial roofing. To maximize the new roof’s performance, value, and longevity, it is vital to customize a commercial roof system that works with your building.
Costs to Consider
To determine the overall cost of your project, a thorough commercial roofing company will consider a variety of questions before submitting a proposal.
How large and detailed is the roof?
Naturally, commercial roofing costs vary based on the overall size of the roof. In addition to size, the number of penetrations, such as vents or air conditioning systems, is also a factor, particularly with a single-ply membrane roof. These features require careful sizing and cutting of the membrane, which increases labor costs and time to finish the project.
Does the existing roofing have to be torn off?
When the roof’s substructure is sound, installing a new commercial roof over the existing one is possible. This eliminates the significant cost of a tear-off and debris removal.
However, a tear-off is necessary if your existing roof is unstable or saturated with excess moisture. Additionally, if your building already has two roof systems in place, they will have to be torn off before work can proceed.
In New Jersey, local building codes don’t allow a third roof to be placed over the existing two. In the case of excess moisture, an ERC Wind Vented Roof is an excellent option because they dry out wet roofs and can be installed over existing multi-layer roofs.
Are repairs to the sub-roofing necessary?
Long-term moisture intrusion may have corroded or rusted metal or rotted wood to the point that parts of the structure must be removed and replaced before a new roof installation can proceed. The commercial roofing costs can vary if you need to replace deteriorated roof decking or framing.
However, if the substructure is in good shape, all that is needed is a recovery board over the existing roof or cleaning the existing surface. These steps are often accomplished quickly and at a relatively low cost.
What about insulation?
To maximize energy efficiency, a layer of Polyiso or EPS is sometimes applied before installing a single-ply membrane roof. Thicker insulation increases upfront costs, though it may reduce long-term energy costs.
What features does the roof have?
Commercial roofing costs increase as the number of roof penetrations, such as vents and air conditioning units, increases. Special flashing materials to properly seal these roof penetrations increase the cost and the time it takes to complete the project.
What does the new roof itself cost?
A building owner will often try to balance their current budget and a desire for a long-lasting, low-maintenance roof system.
Popular single-ply roof membranes like TPO and EPDM are reasonably priced, and routine roof maintenance expenses are usually minimal for many years. Light-colored membranes can reduce energy costs by reflecting more sunlight away from the structure, recouping your expenses sooner.
What about the quality of materials?
Higher quality materials may increase upfront costs while reducing long-term maintenance and repair expenses. Duro-Last’s custom-fabricated, single-ply PVC roofs are excellent. Carlisle’s TPO, EPDM and PVC roof systems are also top options.
ERC is another dependable company that has developed top-tier products, such as revolutionary wind-vented systems. These roofing systems have a reputation for saving building owners money upfront, as this roof typically costs much less than the average roof.
Are current code requirements a factor?
A reputable commercial roofing company will always insist that the work is up to code for both safety and longevity. You may find that codes have changed since your last commercial roofing system. The best commercial roofing companies will be up-to-date on the latest code changes impacting your building.
Choosing a high-quality, customized roof system installed in full compliance with local regulations provides long-term savings and peace of mind.
What about warranty costs?
It is possible to mitigate long-term costs by selecting a roof system with an excellent warranty or investing in an extended warranty. These warranties can reduce the long-term commercial roofing costs.
It is essential to pay attention to the warranties offered. Even though a properly installed commercial flat roof will often last for many years, a “standard warranty” from a non-certified roofer may last for as little as five years.
By contrast, a solid warranty reduces year-to-year budgetary surprises for years to come. Top manufacturers like Duro-Last, Carlisle, and ERC support their roof systems with appropriate warranties when manufacturer-certified roofers complete the work.
Keeping a warranty in effect is generally as simple as having regular roofing inspections.
Upfront About Cost
Regardless of the roof system you select, a commercial roofing company should be as transparent and upfront about costs as possible. At CRS, we simply add the cost of materials, labor and disposal together. Then, we add our markup, and that’s the price. We keep it simple.
We invite you to consider CRS when you need an experienced, reputable commercial roofing company you can trust. We are a full-service roofing contractor that has served commercial clients in NJ, PA and CT for over 45 years.
We offer all the services commercial clients require, from routine commercial roof inspections to total roof replacements and from emergency repairs to scheduled service work. We look forward to learning more about your unique requirements. To arrange for a complimentary visit by a certified roof inspector, please contact us today.