Managing a roof can be a difficult task. It is often a task that those in charge aren’t fully prepared for, and therefore they can make decisions that are less than optimal. Becoming aware of, and avoiding some common roofing mistakes is a surefire way to save money, improve the state of your roof, and ensure that it lasts as long as it should. Check out the common roofing mistakes below to ensure you don’t make these avoidable mistakes.

Incorrectly Estimating Project Costs

When installing a new roof, a common mistake is to Incorrectly estimate the total project costs. This works with overestimating and underestimating. Thinking that a project will cost more than it actually does mean that you had more money budgeted, and may not have gotten the best roofing system because you didn’t spend your full budget. This is a mistake because with the money left over, you may not be able to use it to improve your roof, and now you have a surplus with a roof that could be better. This is the better mistake to make in estimating of the two, however.

Underestimating project costs means you’ll have to dig deeper into your pockets, pull money from another area of the facilities budget, or stop the project short. You could end up with an incomplete roof, or a half-new roof and half-15 year old roof. Take your time when estimating project costs, it’s a very important step.

common roofing mistakes
Large roofing projects take a lot of time, and they can last longer than expected if you’re not careful

Underestimating Project Duration

When you’re about to begin a roofing project, it’s also important to try and estimate the duration as closely as possible. If you estimate that you’ll finish the project by September and you cannot, you might start too late, stretch the project into winter, and then have to wait until spring to finish. Now you’re left with an incomplete project, and you’ve spent more time and money on the project than you expected.

Another way to look at this is to make sure you give yourself plenty of time to finish any project you start. If you think it will take 4 months, a safe practice is to begin 5 months before you MUST finish. That way if there are time overruns you won’t be out in the cold.

Choosing a Short-Lived System

An all-too common roofing mistake is choosing a short-lived system to try and “save money”. Unfortunately, as we have seen time and again in our experience, these decisions rarely result in a net savings. Sure, you might save money at installation, but you end up paying more in repairs, energy expenses because it’s not a great roof, and in replacing the roof when it fails prematurely.

Obviously, just buying the longest-lasting roofing system doesn’t guarantee that you’re getting the best system, as there are many other factors to consider, but be weary of choosing short-lived systems just to save a buck.

Choosing DIY Roofing over Hiring a Contractor

Many facility managers are skilled enough to manage their own roofing and perform a lot of the roofing tasks themselves. Many others, however, don’t have the skills and shouldn’t undergo large DIY projects on their roofs. If you think you have the skills, try making repairs or improvements in smaller areas of your roof that are not vital. That way, if you get in over your head, it’s not a significant problem. If you find you don’t have the skills, call a professional. They may be more expensive up front but will save you money in the long run.


These are some very common roofing mistakes that we see made over and over again. If you can avoid these, you’ll be in pretty good shape. Give us a call if you need further details on any of these tips. Thanks for reading.

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