Friday, July 27, 2012

Quotes, estimates and expenses, oh my!

I knew buying a house would mean putting in a certain amount of time, effort and money, but wow! This is no joke!

About two weeks after we moved in, we got the first rain fall. It wasn't too heavy, but it was enough to show us one thing - our sun room leaks! Now this room is not something we were planning on using anytime soon. It's not well insulated, so it gets super hot in the summer and it will obviously get really cold in the winter. So for now we thought we'd use it for storage and then update it in the years to come. Well, this leak meant that we had to call in some roofing people to get quotes, as well as look into potentially having to fix the addition (which is where the sun room is).

First off, we called in some roofing guys...

Here's the breakdown:

Option A - a friend of a friend. He is a University professor in his regular life, but he put himself through school doing roofing and does it in the summer when he's not teaching. He quoted us $4,500.

Option B - a well-known roofing company in our city. They quoted $6,500. 

Option C - another well-known roofing company and one that a contractor who looked at the addition recommended to us. They quoted $9,500.

Thoughts on options:
  • Option C is the by far most expensive, but includes everything from changing vents to reflashing the chimney. 
  • Option C has a really good reputation. 
  • Although Option B is cheaper, I think once we started adding the "extras" that Option C automatically includes (replacing vents, etc.) the costs would be similar, so no big savings between the two.
  • Option B has an okay reputation - good, but not as good as Option C.
  • Option A includes everything that Option C includes except reflashing the chimney, and he is half the price. (Husband said reflashing the chimney is not crucial. I'm still trying to figure out what that even means!) 
  • Option A was actually the only one to go up on the roof to inspect it up close. 
So, I think we're going to go with Option A. Obviously money is a big decision factor and I like that we'll be saving several thousand dollars, but I do know that going cheaper is not always better. We definitely weighed the options here, but, this guys seems really good, knowledgeable and friendly. Obviously there could be concerns working with someone who is not with an actual company, but I think working with someone one-on-one has its benefits. He  provides a warranty on his work, the shingles have a manufacturer's warranty for 40 years, and he did our friend's roof and they were very happy.

Plus, Husband pointed out that even if his roof lasts for half as long, it was half as cheap! lol  But I think he would do a good job.

Only wrench in the situation is this: Our roof is very steep and the houses in our area are very close together, which means that when the shingles are delivered, they can't be easily brought up to the roof. This guy is older (45 years old, which isn't bad, but by roofer standards, it's getting up there), so he said he would have to make sure he can get some younger guys to help him in hauling up the shingles by hand. Hopefully he will be able to find that help no problem. He didn't seem overly concerned about that though, but it could be a potential problem.

We did email him last night to confirm that we do want to go with him and now we're just waiting to hear back from him. I'm really hoping he can do it as we would save a lot of money and that money can be put towards fixing the addition.

Welcome to home ownership!

Up next... The addition headache...

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