Houses come in all shapes and sizes, but one thing they all have in common is that they all have roofs. Having a solid roof is essential to protect the home’s structure from snow, hail, rain, and debris. Most roofs are dependable for 25 to 50 years, but eventually they will all need to be replaced. When installing a new roof, the most essential consideration is the types of roofing materials to use.
Choose a roofing system that best meets your budget requirements, provides durability in your weather conditions, and provides the best esthetic value:
- Asphalt Shingles: About 80% of homes are covered with asphalt shingles. Asphalt shingles are the least expensive roofing solution available and last 15 to 30 years if you keep up with maintenance. If you choose an asphalt roof system, just make sure to use quality supplies. Asphalt roofs with cheap asphalt supplies can be damaged in high winds or extreme temperatures.
- Wood Shingles: Shingles made of cedar, redwood, or pine provide a beautiful accent to a house. They can be machine cut, or hand cut for a more rustic appearance. The drawback to wood roofing is that it is not as fire resistant as other roofing materials. In fact, in dryer areas, building codes limit the use of wooden roofs at all.
- Tile: Tile is an extremely durable roofing material. Rounded tiles create a classic Spanish look for a home, and flat roof tiles are used for French and English style homes. Tile roofs are very heavy though; if you are replacing your current roof with a tile roof, the old roof will need to be removed entirely to ease the weight load on the home. An engineer will need to examine the home prior to replacing the roofing material with tile to ensure that the home’s structure can support that added weight.
- Slate: Slate roofs are most common in the northeast United States, which is also where slate is usually quarried from. The benefit of a slate roof is that it makes a beautiful roof and it is widely considered indestructible. The drawback is that it is significantly more costly than other roofing solutions. Because installation is complicated, you have to use roofing contractors specifically experienced with slate roofs in order to have it installed.
- Metal: Metal roofing has the combined benefit of being one of the most durable roofing materials and the most lightweight. Metal roofing can last upwards of 50 years, and provide a very elegant appearance to a house while requiring little maintenance. Weight-wise, metal roofing puts only a fraction of the burden on a home’s structure that a tile roof does. While tile roofing weighs 750-900 lbs per 100 square feet, metal roofing typically only weighs 50-150 lbs per 100 square feet. The drawback to metal roofing is the higher upfront costs for supplies. The upfront costs for metal roofing typically range from $150 to $600 per 100 square feet. On the plus side, the additional cost up front is made up by its lifespan. Also, some home insurance companies offer rates up to 30% lower for homes with metal roofs.
Have you ever replaced your roof? What type of roofing system did you get and how do you like it? Please leave a comment with the details. We want to hear about it!