Is New Siding or a New Roof Cheaper for a House?
© 2011 by Aurelio Locsin
Though a new roof and siding can add value to a home, replacing them both at the same time can prove too costly. Homeowners can choose to do just one of these upgrades at a time on the basis of price. Putting on siding is generally cheaper than putting on a roof, though costs depend on the materials used.
Vinyl siding is durable and naturally resistant to moisture, rot and insect damage. Its color is applied at the factory, so maintenance is minimal. Only an occasional wash is needed to keep it looking new. According to Cost Owl, with prices accurate at the time of publication, the average cost for vinyl siding is $2.50 to $3 per square foot, which puts the total for a typical 2,000-square-foot house at between $5,000 and $6,000. Premium quality siding, with insulation, can command $4 to $6 a square foot. This puts the final cost of a 2,000-square-foot home at between $8,000 and $12,000.
Asphalt is inexpensive and long-lasting, which accounts for it being the most popular material for residential roofs. Cost Owl estimates such roofs cost from $2.75 to $4.50 per square foot, which puts the total of a 2,000-square-foot house at between $5,500 and $9,000. This is more expensive than basic vinyl siding but cheaper than premium siding. Note that this price does not include removal of old roofing material and hauling it away. That runs from $1.75 to $2.50 per square foot, or a total of $3,500 to $5,000 for a 2,000-square-foot home. With removal and installation, an asphalt roof costs more than even premium siding.
Wood adds stylistic warmth, with shingles and shakes that can be sculpted to different dimensions and stained with different colors. It thus remains a choice for traditional homes, even though it requires constant upkeep for protection against insects and the elements. The price of installation and materials is $2 to $3.25 a square foot. This prices a 2,000-square-foot home at between $4,000 to $6,500, which is almost the cost of basic vinyl siding. Because wood can burn, municipalities in Southern California or Texas, where forest fires are common, ban the use of wood roofing materials.
Tiles are naturally fire resistant, can add a touch of Southwestern style, and have a dimensionality that is both strong and durable. Cost Owl prices concrete tiles at $4 to $9 per square foot, including installation, for a total of $8,000 to $18,000 for 2,000 square feet. Ceramic roof tiles cost from $6 to $12 a square foot, making the total for 2,000 square feet at $12,000 to $24,000. This makes tile even more expensive than premium vinyl siding.