Planning to Re-roof in 2021 – COVID19 Pandemic Impacts to Consider
Press & Medias

Richelle Thomason, Director of Business Development & Client Relations, Commercial Roofing

As featured in Building Industry’s February 2021 Issue. 

Last year, the global economy endured its deepest recession as the COVID-19 pandemic upended lives and livelihoods.  Here at home we were not spared.  Many capital projects were deferred due to economic uncertainties.

With a slight sigh of relief, at the end of 2020 economic forecasts predicted strong growth with reopening of economies and availability of vaccines, which should gradually unleash a new wave on travel and services in 2021.

However, as we cautiously navigate through 2021 the effects from the pandemic still linger and continues to impact our economy.


Here a few things to consider to best prepare and plan for your 2021 roofing project.


  • Material Shortage – Currently, there is a shortage of roofing material and accessories. Most roofing material and accessories come from the mainland and are sold by local distributors.  Due to the high number of COVID-19 infections in the mainland, many roofing manufacturers had no alternative, but to shut down their plants.  As supply-chain disruptions are slowly recovering commodity prices have sharply risen causing a spike in material costs.  “Supply and demand”.

  • Shipping Delays – The pandemic continues to cause businesses around the country to close, freight forwarders and ground transportation alike. What used to take a few days to receive could now take up to several weeks, sometime months to receive.  Most notably though is the sharp rise in shipping rates.

  • Building Permits – The pandemic has definitely impacted the timeliness of obtaining building permits. Most roofing projects require a building permit and sometimes the building department will require stamped roof drawings to accompany the permit application.  Stamped drawings must be drafted and stamped by a licensed architect or engineer and can take anywhere from 2 weeks to 2 months to obtain, sometimes longer.  Once the stamped drawings are received and submitted to the building department for review and approval, months have gone by.  With COVID protocols in place, there is little to no access to anyone in permitting.  Some tasks can be done on-line, however for now it’s drop off and wait to be contacted. 


It is anticipated that the US economy will start 2021 slowly and accelerate in the second half of the year.  Plan ahead, budget accordingly for unanticipated increases in costs and allow for enough time to ensure a timely project execution within CDC and state protocols. 




 Richelle Thomason is the Director of Business Development and Client Relations at Commercial Roofing & Waterproofing Hawaii. Commercial Roofing is a full-service roofing and waterproofing contractor in Hawaii with over 25 years of service in the industry and continues to integrate new technology to enhance and advance tested and proven industry best practices in order to continue on mission to “exceed client expectations.”