Two roofs, of course!
Just after we moved in, Ben and I noticed that the roof’s surface appeared to have some buckles and waves. Nothing worrisome had shown up on the inspection report other than the need to replace the roof, so we remained hopeful that there wasn’t going to be a really expensive problem that would eat up our entire renovation budget.
When we pointed this out to our roofer Ivan the day he came over for his initial inspection, he didn’t seem overly concerned. We took him up to the 3rd floor so he could inspect the roof through the rafters. After about 10 minutes of him leaning out windows and climbing up ladders to get a closer look, he gave us the diagnosis – the current roof was laid over an even older cedar shingle roof. He estimated that the cedar roof was well over one hundred years old. Because both roofs were in pretty dire shape, Ivan recommended that we remove them both and lay all new board before installing the new roof.
By this point, it was the first week of June and we had only been in the house for a few weeks. The weather forecast for the week ahead was clear skies, so it seemed there was no time like the present to start the roof project. That first day we were woken at 6 am by the sounds of scraping and banging above our heads. We hadn’t yet hung any curtains on our bedroom windows, so we laid in bed watching wood and old roof falling from above as we contemplated getting up and tackling our own full day of house chores.
Our home’s main staircase is quite tight, which made it impossible to move the headboard of our king bed upstairs. We asked Ivan if we could use his equipment to get the headboard to our bedroom. Just off our master bedroom is a second floor balcony, so this approach worked like a charm! Why hadn’t we moved ALL the furniture and boxes upstairs this way!
The roofers worked from 6 am until sunset, taking short breaks for food and water. I was amazed by their ability to cling to the side of the roof while making fast work of this huge project. By the end of the first day, most of the old roofs were removed, and by the second day, the new boards were going up. Meanwhile, we were working inside on painting projects with the help of several very kind friends. At dinner time, we grilled burgers and hotdogs and made up plates of food for the workmen. Wanting to squeeze every last second of light from the day, they took their dinners up on the roof – inhaling their meal and then returning to their work. Amazing!
Thanks to all of their hard work, the first major project for our home was completed. We still have a number of metal roofs to redo this coming summer, including the lopsided front porch, but at least the main roof was finished.