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The roof before...

We’re Getting a New Roof

So here’s what happened: literally, I had just finished saying to Daniel that I thought we wouldn’t end up spending a boatload of money on the house this year because all of our projects we have planned we can mostly do ourselves and then I walk upstairs to get some sewing supplies out of the guest room and look up at the ceiling and see a huge water stain thanks to the fabulous Nor’easter we’d just experienced and then go back downstairs and say, “Nevermind!” So, new roof, guys. We’re getting a new roof. And there goes, like everything.
Images of our roof taken by one of the roofers who gave us an estimate.

Here’s the thing: when we bought the house, we knew the roof was old and that we’d have to replace it eventually, especially in order to sell it, but we weren’t expecting to have to replace it essentially on our second anniversary of living here and certainly not in a somewhat emergency situation. Thankfully, we have some savings. It just so happens that we are wiping out ALL OF our savings for this roof. Cue all tears and stress.


I decided to be as positive about it as possible. We knew we’d have to replace it, now we at least get to pick something that’s not ugly, we’ll be relieved knowing we have a new, quality product sheltering us and, something that I just thought of while typing this, maybe we can get a break on our insurance now that we don’t have a 20-year-old roof???!!!


Speaking of insurance, we called them to come out and, upon inspection, they said they would only cover the shingles that were blown off that may have possibly led to the leak and that amount doesn’t even meet our deductible and just rehashing this is making me fall apart on the inside. The positivity that I managed to muster up before was short-lived.


We belong to various email and Facebook groups for our neighborhood and area, so I put out a call for roofer recommendations and also asked what people had paid in the past few years for their new roofs so we understood where in the spectrum our quotes fell. Over the course of February, we had four roofers come check it out, peek into our attic, poke around, say how badly we are in need of a new roof due to all of the patch jobs it’s had over the years, leave us samples of different roofing options and leave us price quotes. We were quoted $6k-$9k, which is on the low end to on par with what other people were quoted for their roofs. We narrowed it down to two companies and then relied on Angie’s List reviews to help us make the final decision.
Images of our roof taken by one of the roofers who gave us an estimate.
If you are in need of a new roof, definitely do your research on materials, designs, costs, and roofers and their reviews. Get multiple quotes. Part of the conversations we had with these roofers was whether we really needed a new one now or whether we could just patch it. Everyone agreed that it had been patched too many times in different areas that it wouldn’t be worth simply patching it again. One roofer said that if the roof is more than 15 years old and there’s a leak, it’s time to fix it. So, you know, our situation.


We have some really beautiful houses in our area. Most of the housing stock in our town and a neighboring town were built in the 1920s and ’30s, many of which are mansions from that era, and have the unique architectural details to reflect that. Whenever I pass a pretty roof, like a scalloped-shingled slate roof, I swoon. I thought to myself, whenever we get around to doing the roof, maybe we could get something like that. HAHAHAHA. Not only is it laughable because, for some reason I still choose to dream even though we can’t afford anything, but even a roofer laughed at us and basically said any material more expensive than asphalt shingle is not worth the expense on a house of our size. Thanks, dude!
Majestic Slate: Smoke Gray, Federal Gray, Stone Red
Majestic Slate: Smoke Gray, Federal Gray, Stone Red. Photo from EcoStarLLC


My main issue when it came to design for the roof was that I wanted something textural and architectural since we have a steep slope in the front of our house that makes the roof really prominent from the street. I wanted something that would help our curb appeal and in a color that went well with our siding – light gray with white trim – but wasn’t black.
See how prominent the roof is in the front of our house?
In other words, I didn’t want three-tab shingles (the style we have now, but in an upgraded material) but we couldn’t afford anything too special. Thankfully, there are a couple of options that we could afford.


Samples left behind by one roofer. To the left is the asphalt shingle version of scalloped slate shingles. In other words, a knock-off. To the right, dimensional shingles.
We came to a decision on type of shingle, color and roofer, and signed a contract and gave away too much of our money this weekend. Wish us luck as we finish up this roofing process. I just hope that the water heater and furnace don’t go out any time soon. I’ll update this blog with the new roof very soon (I hope)!

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