What To Do When You Can't Afford A Roof Repair

On average, homeowners spend about $770 dollars to repair a roof. Of course, the total cost will differ depending on the size of the roof, the amount of damage that needs repair, as well as the age of your roof. Most people don’t have almost $800 to spend on roof repairs, which can leave you in a serious bind. Not fixing the roof leaves the rest of your home vulnerable to water leaks, heat leaks, and moisture buildup that can lead to mold and mildew growth.

If you’re low on cash but need roof repair, there are options to consider. Here’s what you can do if you can’t afford roof repair but want to protect your home.

Consider Financing the Repair Costs

Finding the cash to pay for roof repair upfront can be impossible. The good news is that there are several financing options available that you can use to pay for the cost of roof repair over time. For a couple hundred dollars, you may want to consider charging the costs to a credit card. Otherwise, you could also consider a personal loan.

If your roof has extensive damage, you may want to consider a home equity line of credit (HELOC). With a HELOC, you can use the equity in your home to pay to have your roof repaired. But, you only want to go this route if the roof repair will cost thousands of dollars. Taking out a home loan for less than that isn’t the best option.

Apply for a Grant

There are many home improvement and renovation grants that are provided by local, state, and federal governments. Home repair grants are typically for:

  • Elderly people
  • Those who are disabled
  • Low or moderate income homeowners  

One of the most common grants for roof repair and replacement is the Weatherization Assistance Program. You may also want to look into the Section 504 Home Repair program for financial assistance. There is also the Very Low-Income Housing Repair program, run by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which offers loans and grants to low income homeowners. The money can be used to improve, repair, or modernize your home. In this instance, the grant money would come in handy for repairing your roof.

With a government grant or loan, odds are that you'll be given a low interest rate. This minimizes the amount of money that you'll spend overall.

Use Your Network

There are some home projects that you can DIY. But, when it comes to repairing a roof, if you’re inexperienced, this may not be a DIY task that you want to tackle on your own. Roof work can be dangerous and when done improperly, can cause further damage to your roof and your home.

One of the benefits of social media is that you have direct access to friends and family members and can rely on them to help you during tough time. Ask around to see if anyone in your circle is experienced in roof repair. Having a friend or family member repair your roof will likely save you money on labor costs.


Refinancing your home with a home improvement loan, such as the FHA 203K Refinance Loan, can be quite useful when it comes time to pay for roof repair. This loan program is meant specifically for necessary repairs. Online you'll find various lenders that offer this type of loan option. But, before refinancing, be sure to speak to a financial expert. Refinancing your home is a big decision and can impact you in the long run. Be sure that the loan you choose offers a decent interest rate as well as agreeable loan terms.

Start Saving Up

In the worst case scenario, you could always hire a contractor to give you an estimate on your roof to include the cost to repair it as well as the severity of the damage. If the contractor doesn’t believe that repair is imminent, you can take some time to save up money to eventually cover the cost of repair. Start by creating a new monthly budget and figure out areas where you can save money. Some money-saving ideas include:

  • Cooking and eating meals at home
  • Finding free/low cost entertainment
  • Spending less money on unnecessary items

With the right budget, in a few months, you may be able to save up the money needed to pay for roof repair.

Related content: Is a Leaky Ceiling Covered by Insurance?


The bottom line here is that ignoring a problem with a roof can cause even more damage. This means that you’ll pay even more money to repair the issue. The options above allow you to pay for roof repair without putting yourself in a financial bind.

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