In our last article, we outlined the steps you need to take when preparing your home or residential property for a new roof. But what steps should you take if you’re replacing the roof of a business or commercial property?
Here at Code Engineered Systems, many of our clients need a commercial property roof replacement. While similar to prepping for a residential roof replacement job, there are several unique considerations for ensuring that a business roof installation goes as smoothly as possible.
1. Planning for a Commercial Roof Replacement
Failing to plan means planning to fail. When in the market for a new roof for your business, the planning and the outlining stage is critical. Here’s what you’ll want to consider:
- Determine the specifics for your roof replacement—What’s the square footage of your roof, coating requirements, or materials you wish to have installed? Answering these questions first will help you establish a reasonable budget and make it easier for the roofing contractor to give you an accurate quote.
- Establish a time table—specifying a start and finish date for the roof replacement is crucial for ensuring continuity in your business operations.
Planning also protects your business profits. You may need to shut down operations for the duration of the project. If you don’t have a reasonable grasp of how long the roof replacement will take, you might jeopardize the health of your business.
2. Set a Budget
Commercial roof replacement costs mainly depend on the size of the roof, types of materials used for replacement, and your contractor. Also, it’s essential to set aside a small percentage of the funds, in addition to the determined budget, for unforeseen costs. Delays from inclement weather, change orders, and other issues can cause the final price tag to be higher than initially anticipated. Despite everyone’s best efforts, Murphy’s Law reigns supreme. Don’t forget to ask your contractor about their financing options for a commercial roof replacement.
3. Prep the Area
Both residential and commercial properties require an initial cleanup of the area before work begins. Remember, delays will put a crimp in your budget. Clearing the area of clutter and storing lawn ornaments and other outdoor objects beforehand will ensure the project stays on track. Some other tips for prepping your business location for a roof replacement job include:
- Declutter the worksite—Remove and store lawn ornaments, tables, chairs, and other free-standing outdoor decorations before the job begins.
- Cover decorations and other objects—Ornaments and decorations that can’t be easily moved and stored should be covered with tarps or another sturdy covering. This will protect your belongings from getting covered in dust and dirt or damaged from debris.
- Provide parking, and easy access to the worksite—Your contractor and their crew will need fast and easy access to the site, their equipment, and vehicles. Make sure the driveway and parking lots are clear. Delays will occur if roofers have to navigate around parked cars to access the roof. Ensuring clear access also reduces liability issues for you.
Please remember to display warning signs around the property during the construction process. Signs will help visitors, customers, and staff members avoid dangerous and high-traffic areas, further reducing your liability and keeping everyone safe.
4. Deactivate Security Alarms
Roofers use heavy-duty tools and equipment to remove old roofs and replace them with new materials. Also, roofers will be walking back and forth across the roof. These activities will cause vibrations through the walls, which can trigger your security alarms. Be sure to deactivate them before work begins.
5. Remove Wall Hangings
Art and decorative wall hangings and light fixtures should be removed before work begins. Vibrations from roofing equipment can cause paintings, decorations, and light fixtures to fall and break. Remove and store them safely before the contractors show up.
6. Cover Furniture and Indoor Objects
A roof replacement job will cause a lot of dust and debris to fall from the ceiling in the uppermost floors of a building. Any objects you have in those areas should be covered with tarps or sheets for the duration of the work.
7. Keep Staff Informed and Updated
Having a new roof installed can be exciting, but it can also be stressful—especially for your staff. Let your employees know how long the project will take and keep them updated if there are any delays in the project. Also, be sure to communicate what problem areas employees should avoid for safety reasons.
8. Identify Outlets
Your contractors will need easy access to outlets for running heavy equipment. Be sure to identify which internal and external outlets they can use. Indoor outlets placed close to a door aren’t as ideal as an external wall outlet, but they can work in a pinch. You can also run extension cords through a window to access an outlet.
9. Trim Branches and Cut Grass
A roof replacement job can take several days to several weeks. It all depends on the extent of the job, size of the building, unforeseen delays, and if the weather cooperates. You’ll want to have the grass cut right before the roofers arrive to prevent your business location from looking shabby.
If you have overhanging branches close to the roof, have these trimmed before work starts. Working around overhanging tree branches is a safety hazard for roofers and will also delay the work.
Replacing a Roof for Your Commercial Property: The Bottom Line
Adequately preparing your property for a commercial roof replacement will ensure a smooth, safe, and fast job that stays on-budget. Keep these tips in mind before your contractors show up and begin replacing the roof.
Is your business’s roof nearing the end of its lifespan? Planning and budgeting for a job of this scope can seem daunting. We make it easy for you. Contact us today at Code Engineered Systems to learn more about our financing options for a new roof.