Roofing Laborer Job Description

Roofing laborers work on construction sites to ensure that roofing materials are fitted correctly and that roofs are structurally sound. This job involves choosing the right materials for repairs and new installations, checking for any faults or damage to installed roofs, and applying insulation to keep buildings energy efficient. This is a physically demanding job that can mean working at different heights and in all weather conditions. Most roofing laborers work full time, although extra hours may be necessary to meet deadlines. Those best suited to working as roofing laborers have physical strength and stamina, great math skills for making measurements and calculations, and the ability to operate machinery and tools safely and effectively.


Roofing Laborer Duties and Responsibilities

Roofing laborers carry out a variety of duties depending on the organization they work for. Based on job listings we analyzed, these duties typically involve:

Inspect Roof Damage

Roofing laborers inspect roofs to check for any damage to the shingles, tiles, or waterproofing, and identify areas where repairs need to be made.

Estimate Costs

Roofing laborers estimate the labor and material costs for each job and determine whether additional weatherproofing or insulation will be required.

Install Insulation

To make the structure more energy efficient, roofing laborers install insulation or vapor barriers and cut materials to fit the corners and walls so that everything is sealed and leak-proof.

Choose the Right Materials

Roofing laborers need to ensure that the correct materials are used for the job, from wood and slate to asphalt and steel.

Keep the Construction Area Tidy

To meet health and safety regulations, roofing laborers ensure that the construction and work areas are kept clean and tidy, and that any dangerous materials or tools are kept out of walkways to prevent accidents.


Roofing Laborer Skills and Qualifications

Roofing laborers should have the strength and stamina to carry heavy loads and work long hours outside. They also need good teamwork skills and the ability to properly follow instructions. Typically, employers require a high school diploma and an apprenticeship that demonstrates experience, as well as the following abilities:

  • Listening skills – an important aspect of this job is the ability to follow instructions, so roofing laborers need strong listening skills
  • Dexterity – roofing laborers work with heavy materials and tools on roofs that might have very steep pitches. For this aspect of the job, dexterity and safely maintaining precision are important
  • Physical fitness – roofing laborers often carry heavy materials (such as bundles of shingles) up ladders, so they need the strength and stamina to do this on a regular basis
  • Teamwork – roofing laborers need to work effectively and professionally with other members of the construction team. They must maintain a professional demeanor when working with colleagues and provide assistance when it’s needed
  • Math skills – whether making measurements or calculating the quantity of materials needed, roofing laborers need basic math skills to carry out their job correctly


Roofing Laborer Education and Training

The minimum requirement to become a roofing laborer is a high school diploma, and most job applicants will have completed an apprenticeship in roofing construction or a relevant field. Most roofing laborers learn their trade informally on the job while working with more experienced colleagues. Basic skills can be learned over a few months, but it may take several years to learn how to properly perform more specific and in-depth tasks.


Roofing Laborer Salary and Outlook

The median annual salary for roofing laborers is around $33,000, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Roofing laborers in the 10th percentile earn around $22,000 annually, while the highest paid earn close to $61,000 a year. Some companies offer packages that can reach up to $5,000 from bonus structures based on individual or group performances.

Less than half of employers offer dental plans and medical insurance as part of their benefits package. The BLS predicts that this sector will grow by 12 percent through 2026.


Helpful Resources

We’ve collected some of the best resources to help you learn more about working as a roofing laborer:

International Roofing and Waterproofing Professionals Network – IRWPN has more than 10,000 members on LinkedIn and serves as an international platform for professionals in the construction and building industries. It’s a great way to learn new skills and techniques from experienced colleagues all over the world, particularly for those new to the job

Roofing, Flashing, and Waterproofing – written for professionals, this book brings readers tried-and-tested techniques for properly installing roofs and protecting them from water damage

Roofing Construction and Estimating – this book includes over 300 clear illustrations that help readers answer virtually any roofing question, such as how to estimate tips, reduce waste, ensure a profit on every job, and acquire the right materials for each task

Innovative Roofs Blog – from examples of different roofing styles to tips and techniques on preventing water damage, this blog covers a wide variety of topics that will help any new roofing laborer learn terminology and bolster their understanding of this field


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