WHY SPEND MONEY ON ROOFING SOLUTIONS THAT YOU KNOW ARE TEMPORARY?
First off, it is important to begin by saying that no roofing solution is permanent. Anything you put on your roof will require regularly scheduled maintenance and repairs to ensure that it stays in good working condition for the maximum length of time.
By temporary, we mean solutions that are only going to last 5-10 years and are just a Band-Aid for the symptoms of the problem, not something that is designed to solve the actual problem for 15+ years. Nothing is permanent, but you can get long-term solutions that cost more but save money later.
Many building owners think that because they don’t have it in the budget this year to make proper roof repairs or improvements, they should only spend what they have on temporary repairs and then make more repairs next year when more money comes in. This seems like a way to save money for the company, and in the short run it does. But over the course of many years, this wastes the company’s money and is not the best way to handle the roofing situation.
There is a story, a parable or sorts, about two men who got their first jobs at a factory after finishing high school. Booth needed a new pair of boots on Monday when they started at the factory, so they each went shopping over the weekend. One man had enough money to buy a $100 pair of nice boots with a lifetime warranty. The other only had enough to buy a $40 pair of boots.
The first man spent more up front, but never had to buy boots again while he worked at the factory. The second man spent far less initially, but then had to buy new boots each year for 40 years while he worked at the factory. This story illustrates how a larger upfront investment can pay great dividends later in the life of the product purchased.
While sometimes it is true that a company simply doesn’t have enough money to make proper repairs and improvements, that company should consider making minimal repairs for a period of time while they save for the larger, more complete and permanent repairs. They must still obviously perform a certain level of maintenance, but they can scale back their repairs until they can be more thorough.
One key when looking at long-term products is obviously the life of the roofing product. Spray foam is a very long lasting roofing product that can be expected to last 25-30 years with no degradation in the material. If you are looking based solely on life, spray foam is a great option.
Another factor that is important to consider is the renewability of the product at the end of its life. Some materials, when having reached the end of their lives, are rendered useless and must be torn off and replaced or have a new roof put in over top of them. The downsides of a system like this are obvious: You have to spend even more money to get rid of it prior to spending money to replace it.
However, a system like spray foam that is renewable provides a great alternative to the cost of replacement. At the end of the first life of spray foam, the protective coating on top of the foam that protects it from UV rays can be re-applied and the foam’s life can be extended 10-15 more years. Then at the end of that time period, re-apply the coating again and you extend the life again.
Similarly, restoration coatings are renewable at the end of their life, and they can extend the life of the building for many years. They are applied directly to an existing roofing system and increase the lifespan for a long time after it would have failed without the coating.
Spending More to Save More
These systems are more costly to install than the minor repairs that can be substituted for them for a few years, but in the long run the upfront investment will save the company and building owner money. Instead of making small, annual investments in the roof, it is generally more profitable to make one large investment upfront and then reap the benefits of decreased repair expenses over time. There are also energy savings that won’t be discussed here.
While many building owners like to think they are saving money by putting off major roof repairs for many years, they are slowly costing the company tons of money by making these small repairs on an annual basis. It will generally be beneficial to the company to make large repairs upfront. Although this can seem counterintuitive, it has worked for building owners for many years.
If you have questions about what kind of repairs and improvements you should be making to your building, give us a call and we’d love to talk about your roofing system.