Cost guide: roofers

Our Which? Trusted Traders take you through the cost of roof repairs, explain some of the signs that your roof needs repairing and how to find a good roofer.

In this article

How much do roofers charge

Many roofers charge by the hour, and often more for the first hour, particularly if they have had to travel from further afield. But some will negotiate a price based on the type, especially if they can estimate how long it will take.

We’ve surveyed roofers¹ to find out how much you might need to pay for some common roofing jobs.

Our figures are only a guide to average costs, and there are several factors that can affect how much you’ll be charged, including:

  • where you live
  • the age and condition of your property
  • how long the job takes
  • ease of access to your roof
  • the type of roof tile or material being used
  • whether scaffolding is needed (as this can significantly increase the cost).

Unless otherwise specified, prices include labour and materials but exclude VAT. We've also added tips below on how to save money and find a reliable roofer.

Find trusted roofers near you. Only roofers who have passed an assessment by our trading standards professionals, and who follow our Code of Conduct, can become Trusted Traders.

Cost to repair a roof

Our table below shows how much it costs to get various roofing repairs done - cleaning gutters, replace standard tiles, and replace ridge tiles.



Typical cost

Clean gutters

Clear out all gutters at front and back of property.


Replace standard tiles

Replace one to six broken or missing standard roof tiles.


Replace single ridge tile

Put in a new ridge tile (along the top of the roof).


New and roof replacement costs

Our new and replacement costs cover getting a new tiled roof, and a new flat roof using felt or other materials.



Typical cost

New tiled roof

Replacing entire roof on an average three-bedroom house.

£4,500 - £7,000

New flat roof (felt)

New flat roof on a typical single garage (6m x 3m). Felt roof without using boards, keeping the initial structure in place.

£840 - £1,150

New flat roof (other materials)

New flat roof on a typical single garage (6m x 3m). Using new boards and modern products such as PVC / rubber EPDM.


Roof repair vs a new roof

As the costs above show, repairing a roof is almost always much more cost effective then getting a new one, depending on the extent of the damage or the problem. However, this isn’t the case if the repair is unlikely to solve the issue or last very long.

You might also want to consider a new roof (often called re-roofing) if you’re home has structural damage because of it or extensive water leaks, which will cause knock-on issues and costs.

Before you make your decision, your roof should be inspected fully, ideally by a few traders, so that you can understand the problems.

Find a reliable and recommended roof repairer near you now by using Which? Trusted Traders.

Roof problems you should look out for

We’ve highlighted some early warning signs for different types of roof to help you prevent problems getting worse and becoming more expensive to fix.

Slate and tiled roofs

  • Internal damp, staining on walls and ceilings or leaks: this may signal a cracked or slipped tile.
  • Missing tiles: if you notice a gap, get the tile replaced quickly to prevent water from penetrating the felt underneath. A gap can also make it easier for more tiles to be dislodged in high winds.

Flat roofs

  • Cracks or splits round the edges.
  • Uneven lumps.
  • Sagging: this may indicate that water has built up above.
  • Damp patches on the ceiling: this may signal that the roof covering has a tear.

Roof shingles

  • Mishappen or missing sections.
  • An inconsistent colour or small pieces in your gutters - this is a sign that they're breaking up.


It's also worth paying particular attention to any joins, such as your roof ridge (the tiles at the top), roof valleys (where two pieces meet) and chimney to look for gaps. 

Lastly, if you can see daylight through your roof, you should call in a professional as soon as possible.

When should I call in a roofer?

As well as speaking to a trader if you spot any of the issues above, it's a good idea to have your roof and gutters inspected each year. Some contractors will carry out inspections free of charge, so ask about costs in advance. If your roof is 25 or more years old, this is particularly important.

You may be able to clear out gutters at lower levels yourself, to allow water to flow away and prevent problems, but most roofing jobs are best left to professionals.

It’s also worth looking up at your roof from time to time and internally on ceilings, as well as doing so when there have been particularly strong winds, heavy rain or snow and ice. 

How to keep the roofing costs down

The cost of repairing, and in particular replacing, your roof can run into thousands, but there are ways to make savings and stop costs escalating.

1. Choose a trusted roofer

Finding someone who won’t exaggerate the work needed or take longer than is necessary will keep prices realistic. We’d recommend getting a few quotes to help uncover anyone who isn’t fully reliable - read our advice below for more details on this.

2. Watch out for hidden costs

Certain elements, such as disposing of waste and access issues can all bump up the price. Make sure you have checked this before you start so that you’re not met with any surprises. You might also be able to solve them, such as by disposing of the waste yourself or speaking to a neighbour about granting safe access.

3. Choose the right materials

Some roof coverings are cheaper than others, so can bring the cost down. However, make sure you do your research beforehand as you don’t want to choose something that will cost you more in the long-run.

4. Make sure you know what’s included

Check whether your quote covers extras, such as equipment hire and supplies. Some of these you might be able to get ahead of time, especially if you shop around.

5. Find someone close by

Choosing a roofer who lives near to you should make their fee lower as they won’t have to travel far.

6. Keep communicating with your roofer

If issues do arise, talking them through in a timely manner will ensure extra time isn’t wasted. Make sure someone is available to answer any questions  and that the trader has the right contact details.

How to find a good roofer

It's always a good idea to start by asking your neighbours for recommendations when looking for a roofer, as you're likely to share the same style of roof. Most roofers will be happy to install either slates or tiles, but check their experience if you have a flat roof or other more unusual structure. 

Find out whether previous customers praise all aspects of a roofer's work, such as the quality and cost of the work, the time it took to complete and what they were like to deal with.

Which? Trusted Traders is partnered with The Confederation of Roofing Contractors (CORC) who vet and check all of their members thoroughly. Public liability insurance is vigorously checked to ensure that their roofers are not only insured, but insured for the right trade. They provide free help and advice to members of the public regardless of whether they have used a member or not and will provide free mediation if there are any issues with their members and customers.  Read more about our partnership here.

It's also worth finding out whether your roofer or roofing contractor is a member of The National Federation of Roofing Contractors (NFRC), which is well-regarded in the industry.

NFRC contractors undergo rigorous vetting before joining and are subject to checks every three years. They must hold appropriate public, employers’ and third party insurance, comply with health and safety legislation and operate in accordance with the NFRC Code of Practice as well as British and European Standards.

If you need tiles, a fascia or slates replacing, then you can search for a roofer with Which? Trusted Traders. All the traders on our scheme have been vetted by trading standards qualified assessors to ensure they have all the correct procedures in place and operate according to current regulations.

You can check the reviews left by other customers on each roofer's profile page to get a feel for their business. In the unlikely event of anything going wrong, you have access to an alternative dispute resolution scheme if you are unable to resolve any problems directly with your trader.

Read reviews for roof contractors who have been through our rigorous check, enabling them to display our trusted logo.

Getting roofing quotes

Contact at least three roofers for quotes, irrespective of the nature of the job to give you a range of prices. A roofing company will usually want to come and inspect your property, even before quoting for a simple job, such as replacing broken or missing tiles and cleaning gutters, as it's tricky for them to price a job without seeing the general state of the roof they will be working with.

Roofing is a trade where you might reasonably be issued with estimates instead of quotes. This is because the roofing contractor may not be able to see what condition the roof’s sub-structure is in until the slates or tiles have been removed.

Always ask for estimates or quotes in writing and make sure they include the cost of materials, scaffolding and so on. Be wary of roofing contractors that offer cash or VAT-free deals.

Bear in mind, cheapest is not always best. It's a good idea to revisit online reviews or customer references before making a decision, and take into account the quality of the survey, advice given and how confident you feel about the company.

The availability of the roofing business may also come into play, depending on how quickly you want the work completed. It is often the case that the most popular businesses will be booked some time in advance, so it's worth getting quotes in, in good time.

If there is anything on the quote you don't fully understand or why one contractor recommends/ details something that another contractor hasn't, talk to them and ask them to explain. Any decent trader will be happy to talk you through the options.

Hiring a roofer checklist

Once you've decided which roofing contractor best meets your needs, you need to discuss and agree with them:

  • what will happen in the event of unforeseen extra charges
  • whether or not there will be any penalties if the work is finished later than anticipated
  • what would happen in the event of prolonged adverse weather
  • what hours the trader will work during the week, or at weekends if necessary
  • what materials will be used, who will supply these, and if they come with a guarantee or not 
  • whether or not outsourced labour will be used
  • how rubbish will be disposed of and whether that is included in the overall cost
  • whether or not scaffolding will be needed and if it is included in the overall cost
  • what will happen in the event of any work not meeting a satisfactory standard.


It's always a good idea to set this down in a written contract - it doesn't need to be complicated, just record what you agree and both sign it. Then you have a record of how you expect the work to proceed, which should protect both you and the trader.

This should be standard on all larger jobs, but is recommended even for smaller repairs. Most reputable builders will issue a contract as standard before starting work in any case.

You, as the customer, should establish whether planning permission will be required, although your roofer may well be able to advise you. You should also be aware that significant work to a roof must either be completed by a contractor who is a member of CompetentRoofer (a competent person scheme for roofing), or you will need to notify your local authority’s building control department before work begins.

Before your roofer starts work, you should ask to see evidence of appropriate insurance, including public liability and working at heights. If your job involves a new roof, or a major refurbishment of an existing roof, you should ask for a guarantee. 

Use Which? Trusted Traders to find a roofer near you who has passed our checks.

When to pay a roofer

You should agree a schedule for payments in advance of work starting. It’s not unusual to be asked for an instalment upfront, especially for larger refurbishments or installing a new roof.

The final instalment should only be paid when you are satisfied with the work and have received all necessary paperwork relating to it.

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¹Costs were checked and updated in 2018.