Pro and Cons of Types of Roofing Materials

When it’s time to install a new roof, you have many different materials to choose from. Durability, cost, fire resistance, and ease of installation are a few aspects of the selection process. Choose roofing materials for your home that complement the style of the property and that fit your budget.

Asphalt Shingles

When selecting materials for a new roof, asphalt shingles are the most popular option. Formed from asphalt and fiberglass with a protective granular surface, this material generally lasts for two to three decades.

Although the shingles eventually will grow brittle and warp, asphalt roofing withstands the elements well. Manufacturers produce asphalt shingles in a wide array of attractive colors to complement any home.

A skilled roofer can install this type of roofing material relatively quickly. Costs typically vary from $2.00 to $5.00 per square foot, a fact that makes asphalt tile roofs comparatively budget-friendly.

Metal Roofing Materials for Your Home

Another popular choice across North America, metal roofing is available in many styles. Metal roofing comes in sheets that are relatively easy to install. Some manufacturers sell architectural metal shingles that mimic wood shake or slate roofs in appearance. Depending on the material, manufacturers offer warranties ranging from 50 to 80 years for premium metal roofs.

Experienced roofing crews can install metal roofs easily. While this roofing material typically costs more than asphalt shingles, it lasts longer and is worth the investment. Metal roofing is available in a variety of durable, attractive colors. Anticipate costs of $8 per square foot (or more) if you select a metal roof.

Clay Tile

Clay has been used for roofing for centuries. Of the different roofing choices, kiln-fired clay tiles offer protection against the elements. In some cases, these roofs endure for over 100 years. We typically see clay tiles in terracotta color, though they’re available in many earth tone shades ranging from cream to brown.

A clay roof requires skill to install correctly. Clay tiles weigh more than asphalt shingles and installation is more time-consuming. Because of this, clay roofing costs are higher than other materials. In some areas, customers should expect to pay $25 per square foot (or more) for a new kiln-fired clay roof.

Roofing Materials for Your Home: Slate

Slate, a type of stone, is a beautiful and long-lasting choice for roofing. It has enjoyed popularity in Europe for centuries. Slate tiles appeal to customers seeking attractive and durable roofs. Like kiln-fired clay, slate offers protection against the elements for a century or longer.

Installing any stone roof requires special skills. Slate is heavy and some homes need to be reinforced structurally to support the weight of a stone roof. Slate roofing typically costs between $10 to $80 per square foot, depending on the home, installation, and your local market.

Selecting Your New Roof

A good first step in choosing a material for your new roof is to discuss the project with a licensed contractor or an architect. Building professionals offer valuable insights about the best material for a property.

For example, in some cases, the slope of the roof and the weight of the materials will affect your options. Other times, an HOA may determine what roofing materials you can use for your home. Check with an expert and know the pros and cons of different roofing materials to make the best decision.

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