So in the article, we’ll discuss the factors that impact the cost after a hurricane. We'll cover what you can expect the prices to do the further we get from the storm date, and the things to look for to avoid being scammed. Hopefully, by the end of the article, you’ll be better prepared and can make a well-informed decision about your storm damage repairs.
Let's dive right in.
Why Do Roofing Prices Increase After a Hurricane Hits?
The impact a hurricane makes on a community can vary depending on the strength and type of damage that it brings. One thing that is common and consistent with storms is the rise in costs. The cost of goods and the cost of services.
Here are the 3 reasons that storms impact the costs of roofing:
Shortage of materials
Shortage of labor
Cost of living
Shortage of Roofing Materials
Because the supply chain is impacted by the sheer volume of roofing materials needed to help homeowners recover. Typically after a storm, the costs of materials will increase 2 to 3 times in the first couple of months. The laws of supply and demand state that the greater the demand and the fewer the supplies, the prices must and will increase.
Asphalt shingles are the most common roofing materials. They’re typically manufactured in local plants. The shingle manufacturer's plants are set up strategically in certain regions of the country. This is done to help alleviate transportation costs. To have enough materials, suppliers are forced to bring in products that are manufactured in markets much further away. So, added transportation costs will impact the costs of the product. Especially asphalt shingles, as they weigh much more than other products and cost more to transport.
Shortage of Labor
The amount of labor in any given market is never enough to make storm damage repairs. If outside labor doesn't travel to a storm-affected area the community will suffer. The wait time will be even longer getting their properties put back to pre-storm conditions. This will also cause prices to rise even higher as the demand for workers increases.
Prices of roofing work increase because the local roofing companies can only get to so many homeowners. We’ve never seen a case where there are enough roofing crews in a community to handle all the work that needs to get done after a storm hits. Therefore, crews have to travel from far away to help get the work completed. Those travel expenses are factored into the cost of getting the storm-damaged roofing work completed.
Cost of Living
Workers that travel to help a community have increased costs of living. Most people who travel to support and help a community that’s been affected by a major storm have a household to support back home. Meaning they now have to be able to afford to live in the affected area while paying to support their families back home. The normal labor rate won’t support the added cost of living for two locations.
So, do you see the shortage of materials and labor, coupled with travel expenses will ultimately get factored into the final cost of services to you? Now let’s discuss what to expect the prices to do after the chaos settles.
What Happens to Roofing Prices After a Hurricane?
The factors mentioned have a major impact on price increases after a major storm. Yet many of our clients ask, "will the prices come back down?" After the dust settles, after the chaos is over, will the prices go back down?
We can only answer from our prior years of experience. When Hurricane Katrina wreaked havoc on New Orleans the average cost to buy one square of shingles was $35 per square. To put that into perspective, the average home requires 30 squares of shingles. Which would cost roughly $1,050. The year hurricane Katrina hit we had seven price increases. For the same house, those shingles were more than double at $75 per square or roughly $2,250. Now, this may or may not seem like that much. But when we add all the components and other factors that it takes to do a roof, it has a major impact on the final price for you.
Couple that with labor prices increasing and not to sound cliché but this creates a perfect storm. And depending on the amount of damaged caused by a storm, the time it takes to recover will play a big part in the prices. We’ve seen prices dip back down slightly on smaller storms where the bulk of the roofing work is done within 6 months. But with storms that cause catastrophic damage, anything more than a year to recover. You can be prepared for the prices to continue to rise and never go back down.
Avoid These Roofing Scams After a Storm
Right after a hurricane hits or any major storm event, there’s chaos and panic. Unfortunately, in every storm, some go out and pray on people who are caught in chaos and panic. From trees that need to be removed or homes that need to be secured with tarps. Many of us are willing to do whatever it takes to get our homes and lives back to some state of normalcy.
We would encourage you to be patient and if possible wait until after the dust settles and the initial shock and chaos are over to find contractors.
Will Roofing Prices Continue to Increase After the Hurricane?
Now that you understand how the increase in demand, shortage of labor, and rise in materials after a hurricane impacts the cost. The short answer is that prices will continue to increase. Waiting longer will typically not result in any cost savings to you and in fact, may even cost you slightly more in the long run.
Since most roofing companies are already operating at maximum capacity during any given year. The chances of the local roofing companies being able to service all those in need are impossible. Being aware of the scams that happen after a major storm should hopefully help you avoid any mishaps.
If you are worried about the cost of your roof replacement and want to get a better idea of the cost. Our team here at RoofCrafters has created a cost calculator that'll help you get a better idea of what you can expect to pay before you call a local roofing contractor out to visit.