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5 signs your roof needs replacing and what it will cost

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Signs of roof damage to look out for and how much it could cost to fix

After all the recent rainfall and storms we’ve been having, your roof could be a little bit worse for wear.

Most people don’t think about their roof that often, except maybe for when the gutters need cleaning. You probably ignore your roof most of the time, until your roof springs a leak and it becomes something you can’t ignore anymore.

Your roof is one of the most fundamental parts of your home. It keeps the rain out so it deserves a closer look, particularly after periods of heavy storms and hail.

Here are the telltale signs of roof damage to look out for and how much it could cost to fix.

Signs of roof damage

  1. Sagging roof. While a sagging roof doesn’t necessarily mean your roof faces imminent collapse, it’s usually a sign of a structural issue and it’s best to address this ASAP before it progresses.

  2. The timber is rotting below the roofline. This is usually an indication that water is getting in through your roof and getting the timber wet. Other telltale signs to look out for are bubbles or chips on painted surfaces. If they’re localised to a specific area, it could be a sign the timber is moist.

  3. There’s corrosion around the gutters. This could be another sign of excess moisture.

  4. The roof flashing is loose. Roof flashing is material (usually aluminium or galvanised steel) that is used over the joints in the roof and wall construction to prevent water seeping in and creating damage. If this is loose, it needs to be replaced.

  5. Discoloured areas on the roof. This is often a sign of algae which needs moisture to grow.

Should you repair, restore or replace the roof?

If you’ve noticed any of the signs above, it’s time to call in the roofing specialists pronto. But how do you know whether your roof just needs a quick fix or if the whole thing needs to be replaced?

There are a few rules of thumb and it will often depend on the extent of the deterioration. Generally, if there’s just a single leak and the roof isn’t that old (under 20 years), it can probably be repaired. Multiple leaks on the other hand call for a full inspection and potentially a roof restoration. Roof restoration is usually more affordable than a roof replacement, and it can add on another 10-15 years to the life of your roof.

If your roof is over 20 years old, you should have it thoroughly inspected. It’s likely you’ll need to have it either restored or replaced. Roofs generally don’t last beyond 30 years, so if yours is this old its best to bite the bullet and just replace the whole thing rather than try and patch it up like a quilt.

If you live in a housing development where all the houses were built at the same time and all your neighbours are replacing their roofs, that’s probably a good sign that you should follow suit.

How much will it cost to replace a roof?

When you’re working out how much money to fork out, you need to consider the size of the roof followed by the materials. Most pricing is based on square metres. As a broad rule of thumb, metal tiles and long-run iron cost around $55 per square metre. The average house size is around 186 square metres according to data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) and CommSec.

Many factors will affect the cost of a roof replacement, the biggest one being the roofing material you’re installing. Asphalt shingles, colorbond roofing and concrete tiles are more affordable options, while terracotta tiles, slate tiles and solar roof tiles are more expensive.

There are also upfront material costs to factor in, as well as the costs to install your new roof.

The type of roofing material on your existing roof could also impact the cost of replacing your roof. For example, if you’ve got asbestos in your roof, that could easily push up the cost of removing it and taking it to the tip.

Generally speaking, it can cost between $10,000 and $20,000 to replace a roof, but this depends on the roofing material you use. For example, for concrete tiles that cost $60 per square metre, this would cost $11,160 for a 186 square metre home. But if you were to install slate tiles at $500 per square metre for a 180 square metre home, this would cost up to $93,000!

If you’re thinking “how on earth am I going to pay for that” topping up your home loan could give you access to the extra funds you need.

Topping up your home loan can often be cheaper than taking out another type of loan as home loans usually have lower interest rates than, say, a personal loan. However, it’s important to keep in mind that topping up your home loan also means you’re taking on more debt which could increase your loan repayments.

The amount by which you can top up your loan depends on how much equity is in your home and what your current financial situation is. Get in touch with one of our friendly lending specialists at 13 10 90 to find out how we can help you.

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About the article

As Australia's leading online lender, loans.com.au has been helping people into their dream homes and cars for more than 10 years. Our content is written and reviewed by experienced financial experts. The information we provide is general in nature and does not take into account your personal objectives or needs. If you'd like to chat to one of our lending specialists about a home or car loan, contact us on Live Chat or by calling 13 10 90.

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