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How much does a roof cost?

December 12th, 2018 Comments off

If you are hoping to find a simple, straightforward answer to the most asked question in roofing – “what does it cost” – or even just looking for a ballpark figure, you could easily be disappointed. Sadly, there is simply no single, accurate answer that can be provided to satisfy your curiosity, as there are far too many variables to take into consideration in order to arrive at an accurate cost.

However, we can discuss a few of the main reasons why roof prices can vary from job to job and inform you what factors can determine the final bill in relation to your property.

Size of the roof

We will start with the most obvious factor; it goes without saying that, the larger the surface area of the roof in most circumstances, the larger the bill.

The bigger jobs often take longer to install and therefore incur greater labour charges. These jobs may also demand more manpower in order to ensure that the structure of the roof is covered and waterproof at all times until the work is complete. Another point is that the amount of materials required would also increase.

Roof type

Regardless of the location where you live, there will be a variety of types of roof installed in that area. All of these types can differ in their shapes, sizes and life expectancies as well as the properties to which they are fitted, and these are all factors which can influence the total cost of installation.

You can find a useful guide to the lifespan of roofing tiles and slates on the Roof Stores website. On a roof, older slate is often placed with newer slate (Spanish and Chinese slate are the most common types), or a manmade slate such as Rivendale or Eternit.

In some cases, it’s also possible to strip the roof back to replace all of the older damaged slate and reinstall the good slate. Slating is an art and can take much longer than normal tiling, as slates all need to be graded first and are installed differently to roof tiles.

Slate should be installed by a specialist slater whose rates are significantly more than those of a tiler. Natural Spanish slate tops the price scale for slates that are more easily obtained in the UK, followed closely by Chinese slate, although many people believe it lacks the same quality as the Spanish slate.

Rivendale is a manmade slate which is designed to mirror the appearance of natural slates and sits in the middle of the price scale. Rivendale delivers a fantastic performance – but, in most instances, natural slate should outlast manmade slates.

Eternit is a low-cost, manmade slate with a lifespan significantly lower than that of Rivendale or natural slate. If you happen to be on a budget, Eternit can reduce your cost by thousands.

Concrete tiles, such as modern and double Roman tiles, are probably the most common tiles installed and can be reasonably priced, with a decent life expectancy when installed correctly and on the right roof.
Finally, clay tiles such as plain, pan and Rosemary tiles should have a long lifespan and are more costly to purchase than concrete tiles. Rosemary tiles are particularly small in profile, so this significantly increases the number of tiles necessary for covering a roof. As a result, it is necessary to purchase more tiles and so increase the time over which the roof will be installed.

Location

This factor can determine what type of tile may be required for your property’s roof installation. Your roof could be within a conservation area where the rules stipulate that you change like for like – and, if this is slate or clay Rosemary, you may have to dig deeper in order to fund the project.

Just as importantly, prices will differ depending on where you live in the UK. For example, labour prices in London will be greater than the cost of roofers in Edinburgh. Material costs can fluctuate across the country, so your own outlay can rely just on the manufacturer and prices in your area.

Quality of the workmanship, materials and installation

The common mantra that “you get what you pay for” certainly applies in the world of roofing. This includes the materials that are used – and you should remember that no two quotes are like for like. Different roofing firms will use alternative methods for installing new roofs, as well as have different manufacturers or suppliers and use different materials.

This is why you should always receive a method statement at the point of pricing so that you understand what you will get for your money and can benefit from a full guide concerning what work they will carry out. In most instances, the cheapest quote will not represent the best value for money in the long run.

Finally, checking that your roofers are fully trained, insured and reputable can save you a lot of hassle – as, unfortunately, there’s no shortage of cowboys and fly-by-nights in the roofing industry. A reputable firm should be able to provide you with all of the information that you need to verify their credentials before you make your decision.

Another costly part of your project will be the scaffolding required. With regards to scaffolding, the more lifts needed and the larger the property, the greater the bill will be. Additional scaffolding will be required around chimneys and dormers and on roofs with a steeper pitch.

Scaffolding and unforeseen circumstances

Conservatories and lower-level extensions can also affect access and would most likely add to the amount of scaffolding required as well as the cost for skips, waste removal and a bumper lift.

Most importantly of all, always budget for more than what the roofing firm has estimated for your roof works in case of unforeseen circumstances. A roof that has been stripped back and exposed can throw up unexpected issues from time to time.

If your roof is particularly old and has long been neglected, don’t be surprised if you notice that water has penetrated the roof due to failures over the years. It’s not uncommon for timber treatments and replacements to be required once the roof is opened up with the aid of scaffolding.

It’s clear, then, why it is important to arrange for a professional to survey all aspects of your roof to prevent or reduce the risk of later, unforeseen costs.

The firm Findley Roofing & Building recently uploaded a YouTube video showing how woodworm had infested a roof in North Shields. Findley staff had opened up the roof and found this common, wood-eating beetle larvae.

The video also explains how Findley, which serves homes in North East England as well as areas further afield, can tackle the issue of a woodworm infestation. The firm offers specialised timber treatment whereby it can spray affected timbers internally to kill the larvae.

If you have problems or concerns with your roof or you have not had it checked for a while, you could arrange for a local roofing company to survey that roof. Findley Roofing & Building is an example of a company that offers this service for free.

Even if damage is indeed uncovered, having your roof replaced, should this be necessary, is financially easier than you might think. Findley offers a range of Newcastle roofing finance packages which allow the firm’s customers to pay cost-effectively for roof improvement.

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How Virtual Reality is revolutionising Aarsleff Ground Engineering’s workspace

December 12th, 2018 Comments off

Aarsleff Ground Engineering have invested in a state-of-the-art virtual reality room to develop and enhance the knowledge and skills of its estimators and engineers. With technology already transforming how people interact and live their lives, Aarsleff Ground Engineering is taking the virtual reality (VR) technology to a whole new level.

Within Aarsleff’s head office in Newark Nottinghamshire, the Virtual Reality room – now known by its employees as the ‘VROOM’, uses three-dimensional simulation and data mapping technology to bring project drawings to life. Currently, the technology aids Estimators in their project proposals, allowing staff to visit project sites, observe site access points to determine appropriate rig type, and see the surrounding environment before ever having to step foot on site.

Aarsleff Ground Engineering have teamed up with leading UK 3D technology and software development studio Luminous Group to develop a virtual reality application that will enable Aarsleff’s clients to “virtually” visit their construction site. Users will be able to experience and interact with the ground engineering specialist’s disciplines, from the stabilisation of a slope with ground anchors and soil nails and the installation of a steel sheet or king post wall, to the driving of a precast concrete pile and the filling of an abandoned coal mine with drilling and grouting. Soon, the new application will allow Aarsleff’s existing customers and potential clients to understand the process on site.  The benefits are hoped to be three-fold – the customer’s confidence in the product should increase, as should they feel part of its production process, new employees can benefit from an engaging induction and existing staff members can be inspired by exemplary experiences within the workplace.

Managing Director Kevin Hague said: “In embracing VR, we also hope to tackle the challenge that ‘young people are not interested in construction’ by rolling out the virtual application at careers fairs and university shows. Students and aspiring engineers will be able to walk around on an Aarsleff site, helping them to understand several ground engineering disciplines and learn about the machinery operated on site – all whilst in a safe and engaging way”

Aarsleff’s Marketing and Communications Manager Jessica Banham further adds:

“The possibilities of VR are endless, and it’s really important that we engage with it now. We’re utilising the technology internally first to bring a new dimension into our estimating process, however we envisage the technology being used for company marketing, Health and Safety inductions, site training and other applications in the near future. Watch this space”.

Ben Bennett, founder of Luminous Group said:

‘We’re delighted to be working with Aarsleff Ground Engineering, they’re a terrific company who are ahead of the curve in embracing virtual reality for their sites.

‘We’re just at the beginning of our journey with them and it’s great that they’ve already identified so many potential areas that our technology can aid them with, and there’s no doubt there are likely applications that haven’t even been thought of in the industry yet. VR really is the future of several sectors and construction is certainly one of them.’

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