When it comes to weatherproofing your home, roofing is the most vital part, so it’s essential that you choose roofing materials that will get the job done. Different materials will perform better in certain situations, so selecting the right type for you is based on performance and style. Just doing a little bit of research will help in a big way down the road because your maintenance will be less and you won’t have to replace your roof as often.

Common Types of Roofing Materials

There are a large number of materials used for roofing, but the most used for residential applications are metal, asphalt, and tile. Each type works well on specific properties, depending on the environment you live in, how much money you are willing to spend, and how long you plan on living in the house.

Asphalt Shingle Roofing

Asphalt Shingle Roofing is the most common and affordable roofing material in the country. It is less than half the cost of other roofing materials, and most people choose it for that reason alone. Asphalt roofing is less stunning in most cases, but if you get materials of excellent quality, you will have several decades of outstanding roofing and a secured home. Because the materials cost less, it’s usually easier to find an affordable contractor to install, repair or replace asphalt shingles.

Metal Roofing

Metal roofing comes in many different styles. Standard metal roofing comes in large sections that attach to your roof decking. It is ideal for homes in heavy snowfall areas or where fire danger is high. Other forms of metal roofing come in tiles and shingles, though they usually cost more. All metal roofing materials are going to last a long time and typically have a 40-year warranty or more. Make sure you talk with your insurance company before installing metal roofing. You may get a reduction in your insurance premiums because of the added safety metal-roofed houses carry. Metal roofing isn’t for everyone in regards to looks, and it’s more expensive than asphalt roofing. If you need a new roof, though, it’s worth researching.

Tile Roofing

Tile roofing materials are as costly as they are beautiful. Traditional tile roofing is burnt orange in color and is a favorite in the southwest. Its appearance is unique, and its performance is a big draw for homeowners. The roofing materials can last 70 years or more in the right environment, not including areas where hurricanes, tornados, heavy snowfall, and hail storms often occur. Also, because it is a less common material, you may have trouble finding experienced installers or repair companies. If your roof has something other than tile and you’re looking to replace it, be aware that the tiles are heavy and structural adjustments may be necessary for your roof to handle the extra weight.

Cedar Shingle Roofing

Cedar shingles cost more than asphalt shingles, but they look fantastic and will last ten years longer if you are diligent about treating them with water sealer every two or three years. They are resistant to severe storms, durable in hurricanes, hail storms, heavy rains, and snowstorms, and are energy efficient.

Concrete Shingles

Concrete shingles are practically indestructible and come in a wide range of colors, shapes, and styles. You can understand why they have risen in popularity in recent years. Homeowners in hot, sunny states choose them for their insulating and high-energy properties. The density and durability of concrete tiles also make them an excellent choice for homes in cold or high-freeze-thaw cycling areas. Concrete roofing isn’t cheap, but you’ll only have to buy it once.

Slate Tile Roofing

Slate roofing is very high-end and therefore expensive but can last over 100 years in the right situation. This type of roofing is made of natural stone and is the most fire-resistant roofing material.  It is also environmentally friendly, accounting for only 5% of the total waste sent to landfills every year. Slate is the least common, but if you have the money in your roofing budget, it may be what you’ve been searching for.

Buying Roofing Materials

Once you have decided on the roofing material you want for your home, call several roofing contractors so you can compare estimates. It’s a good idea to remove the outliers of the group, any contractors that bid far higher or lower than the norm. This person is going to be repairing or replacing the most critical piece of your home, so go with your gut. Make sure they’re someone you feel comfortable around. Once you find the contractor that fits your criteria, let them walk you through the process. They’re the experts, and they’ll give you choices, from materials to guarantees, so it’s a good idea to listen to their advice.


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