This page contains affiliate links, which means we may receive compensation if you complete a form.

Financing programs and free services are the two ways people can pay for roof repair or replacement when they have no money in savings. However, both alternatives require you to meet qualifications.

Getting your roof fixed or replaced free is always the most popular choice. Your homeowners’ insurance is likely to honor claims after sudden losses due to storms, fires, etc. Also, a handful of people in target groups may qualify for grants.

The rest of us with old leaky roofs must turn to a financing program where we repay the lender over time with interest. Private lenders fund most government loans and contractor payment plans. Why not just start at the source?

Financing Roof Replacement and Repair

Taking out a loan and working with a contractor with payment plans are the primary options to finance roof replacement and repair work. Ultimately, borrowing the funding from a bank or online lenders is the primary way most people pay when they have no money in savings, as you will soon realize.

Private lenders are behind every loan approval – regardless of whether you start with the government or a local roofing company offering payments plan – especially if you have a bad credit history.

Private Loans

Loans issued by private lenders are the primary option to finance roof replacements and repairs. With this alternative, the lender deposits funds into the consumer’s checking account. Having money in the bank allows homeowners to shop around for the best price and service from local contractors.

Unsecured

Request an unsecured personal loan here (Affiliate Link) if you have insufficient equity in your home. Personal loans do not require the owner to pledge the house as collateral. The private lender relies on your signature promise to pay on time.

Using an unsecured personal to fund work by a roofing company has several advantages.

  • Faster underwriting requirements without the need for a real estate assessment
  • Defaulting on the contract does not result in foreclosure on the property

Secured

Secured loans tap into the equity of your home – if you have enough to qualify. As a rule of thumb, owners are eligible if the Loan-to-Value ratio (LTV) remains at 80% or lower. You calculate the LTV as follows.

LTV = Balance on Mortgage and Other Liens / Property Value per Assessment

Secured loans are the preferred alternative because of the lower interest rates and longer repayment terms. You can choose from three types of contracts to fund work by the roofing company.

  1. Cash-out Mortgage Refinance
  2. Home Equity Loan
  3. Home Equity Line of Credit

Bad Credit

Roof repair and replacement financing for homeowners with bad credit require a strategy. You cannot contact your local bank, credit union, or contractor and expect an easy approval. You need to identify a lender that is willing to overlook adverse history appearing on your consumer report.

  • Online companies have more experience working with marginal applicants and approve a higher percentage of requests
  • Online lead consolidators (such as the affiliate partner for this site) market your profile to a vast network of lenders improving the odds of finding a fit
  • No credit check companies utilize alternative consumer reports that feature non-traditional data such as apartment rental, and utility payments and focus more on affordability

People often have bad credit through no fault of their own. Bouts of unemployment, health problems, and disability quickly lead to financial hardship. Some individuals in these situations find they fit the income criteria for free help with repairs (see below).

Government Loans

You will not find roofing loans direct from the federal government. Private lenders issue conforming loans backed by government programs that make it easier for marginal applicants to qualify. Several agencies provide taxpayer-supported insurance that allows private companies to approve people they might otherwise decline.

  • HUD Title 1
  • FHA 203K
  • USDA Section 504

Homeowners can use the government-backed funding to repair or replace the shingles, soffits, gutters, underlayment, flashing, and windows along with a host of other approved improvements to their house.

Companies with Payment Plans

Many homeowners look for local roofing companies that take payment plans thinking they can skirt typical lender underwriting requirements or include updates to windows and siding at the same time. The truth is that very few contractors offer financing options themselves. Instead, they refer prospective customers to a third-party bank that sends the money to the contractor – if they approve the applicant.

Read the fine print in the footer of any roofing company advertising that they offer payment plans. Chances are, you will find a disclosure stating the name of the third-party bank. The bank will hold to strict underwriting standards since they are putting their money at risk.

Therefore, people with bad credit are unlikely to improve their approval odds by approaching a local roofing company and hoping that they will allow you to pay over time. Also, you lose the bargaining leverage associated with having enough money stashed away in your checking account beforehand.

Getting Free Roof for Your House

How do you get a free roof replacement or repair for your house? Having another entity cover the cost is the most affordable way to pay for the work when you have no money in savings. The question is, are you eligible?

People with an insurable claim under their homeowner policy win the cost-free lottery most often. However, an adjuster must approve the request. Another avenue is grant programs, which have strict criteria.

Homeowners Insurance

Getting your homeowners insurance to pay for a replacement roof or repair job is the most common way people tap into a “free service.” You pay monthly premiums through your mortgage escrow account. Therefore, the work is not free.

“At no additional cost’” would be a more accurate statement – if the company honors the claim, and you somehow avoid the deductible. Read your homeowners’ insurance policy carefully and note the coverage and exclusions.

Expect the insurer to cover most of these claims

  • Collapse from the weight of ice, sleet, or snow
  • Damage from hail
  • Lost shingles from high wind
  • Fire and lightning strikes
  • Explosions
  • Falling trees and branches

Expect the insurers to deny most of these types of claims

  • Water damage from continuous seepage and leaks
  • Loss from the installation of solar panels
  • Wear and tear, rotting from older materials
  • Earthquakes and earth movements such as landslides
  • Termites, insects, rats, mice, birds, and other vermin
  • Intentional acts

Free Inspections

Free roof inspections are available to most homeowners with a genuine concern about the condition of their residence (not people listing their property for sale with a realtor). Many contractors are happy to send an inspector to your house to provide a free estimate to repair any problems he or she finds.

Many free inspections lead to small or medium-sized repair jobs for the contractor. Also, the estimate may include the remaining life left on your shingles and gutters. Then, smart companies will be sure to follow-up as the older roofs near replacement time.

Also, many contractors provide free estimates knowing that your homeowners’ insurance will foot most of the bill. However, be wary of any roofing company that offers to pay the deductible. Having a provider paying the deductible is insurance fraud. Why put your trust in someone dishonest?

Free Repair Programs

Finding free roof repair programs at government agencies and charitable foundations will be very hard. The opportunities that do exist help lower costs for target populations rather than eliminate them. Furthermore, the initiatives provide support to fix up your entire house – not just the top section.

These free home repair programs can take the form of government grants that trickle down to local charities and state or county-level agencies.

  • Low-income residents in rural areas
  • Senior citizens to remediate health and safety hazards
  • Disabled workers needing home modifications
  • Veterans with a service-related disability requiring adaptations