What Type of Roof Would Work for Your Home?
For the average US homeowner, their home is a never ending project; a series of upgrades or improvements to quality of life as well as necessary repairs. For some it is putting in an inground pool or hot tub. It can be putting in pavers or a new driveway or repainting your interior. The list goes on. One thing we do not always think about, but is extremely important, is our roofs. Many may or may not know that roofs have to be repaired or replaced every ten years or so, depending on various factors including the climate you live in and so forth. While this can be something out of sight, out of mind, ignore it at your peril. Roofs in ill repair can be dangerous as well as unsightly. Leaks can happen, damaging your home’s structure which then turns a relatively small expense into a full scale renovation project.
When looking at your roof, you as a homeowner have many options. The next time you walk around your neighborhood, crane your neck up and look around at the houses. See what types of roofs are most popular. Depending on where you live, there are different architectural styles that are popular. This also varies in different neighborhoods, depending on the demographics. Some roofing styles are less expensive and others are more luxury, high end and custom.
You may see an emerging trend of metal roofs again. This is an old fashioned style from three hundred years ago. You will typically see more metal roofs in agricultural areas as well as on commercial buildings. The benefits here are durability and lack of maintenance while some of the cons may be that the material is more expensive upfront and it is definitely a starker more contemporary look. If this is not your style or taste, it may not be the choice for you. Interestingly, metal roofs create less heat than asphalt shingled roofs, although you may think otherwise. Additionally, it has been proven that significant heating cost reduction is provided to homeowners with metal roofs.
Another common style of roofing is composite shingles. This is possibly the most common material in residential roofing throughout the country. The price is affordable, the materials are either fiberglass or asphalt. This material holds up well to various extreme weather conditions including snow and winds. Installation is relatively simple and many times they can be nailed down on top of an existing roof. This will depend on the condition of the existing material, and you will need your roof analyzed by an expert to be sure of this. As far as the down side for these types of shingles, you will find their life span is shorter than tile or metal and they can also blow off during extremely high winds, as homeowners throughout the East Coast found during Superstorm Sandy.
Wood shakes are another style. These are very aesthetically pleasing for those that like a more “natural” type of look. They require more maintenance than other styles however due to weathering. The installation is more complicated than asphalt shingles and fire protection is required separately with these. Obviously this is a bit more expensive of a process, and it depends on one’s design but they add alot of dimension and character to a home.
Some homeowners like tiled roofing, a common style in warmer climates, such as Florida and California. These give homes a Mediterranean look, and are very grand looking. Ceramic tiles are expensive but last a very long time and are very durable. This is an excellent choice if it fits the overall style of your home, and if it is within your budget. It is extremely important to get these installed by a good roofing company as you will need to ensure weatherproofing is done and a very thorough and careful installation.
Similar to tile, another material that can be used is slate whereby actual rock is being used on your roof. Also a very durable choice, and very expensive but again, has a much longer life span than other materials that are less initially expensive. Again, this type of material has to be installed professionally and carefully, it is highly breakable and roofers cannot just walk on it willy-nilly as they would on asphalt shingles.
Even concrete can be used and mixed with other materials so it does not look like a plain gray slab of concrete on your roof. This is obviously a durable and strong choice but again is a bit costly.
Essentially, you have more choices for your home’s roof than you may have ever thought. On top of all the types of materials, you have various color and style choices and above all, you have the choice of using the company that is best for you.
Guest Blog Written By: Bob Jenkins
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