Throughout history, builders have used a wide variety of materials for residential and commercial roofing. From animal skins and thatch to copper and slate, the builders of shelters and modest dwellings, public buildings, and royal palaces have always needed to craft a roof that would protect occupants and their belongings. Whether the roofing material was aesthetically appealing was often considered secondary to constructing a long-lasting, weather-resistant roof. In the modern world, however, there is no need to choose between functionality and aesthetics. Whether you want a metal roofing system or asphalt shingles, you can have an attractive roof that does its job exceedingly well. With that fact in mind, how do you choose between the two most popular roofing options? Your answers to the following questions can help make your decision easier.
Your Roofing Choices – Metal or Asphalt Shingles?
What Types of Residential Roofing Are Common in Your Neighborhood?
If you live in a large city or its suburbs, you will probably see more homes topped with asphalt shingles than metal. Assuming that a homeowner association or local ordinance does not limit your choices, you could choose any roofing material you like. Asphalt shingles and metal roofs are available in styles that resemble wood shakes, tile, and slate, and you can even find metal roofs that mimic the appearance of asphalt shingles. However, the greater the differences are between your roof and the roofs on neighboring homes, the more your roof will stand out. This can be either good or bad.
Do You Plan to Sell Your Home Soon?
Studies have shown that homeowners typically recoup an average of more than 65% of the cost of their metal roof when they sell their homes. New asphalt shingles do not provide the same return on your investment. However, there is always the possibility that buyers may not like a metal roof, especially if it is a highly unusual color or was not chosen to match the home’s architecture.
Do You Plan to Own Your Home for Many Years?
If you expect to live in your home for several decades, you might prefer to choose a metal roof that could go 50 years or longer without needing to be replaced. Copper and other high-end metal roofs can last for more than a century, but even the more economical metal roofing systems typically carry warranties of 40 to 50 years. Realistically, three-tab asphalt shingles will usually not last more than 15 years or so in Central Texas, and the high-end architectural shingles will last 30 to 40 years. Also, asphalt shingles typically need more in the way of maintenance and repair than metal roofs.
How Concerned Are You About the Damage Severe Weather Can Inflict on Your Roof?
Almost every spring, roofing contractors in Central Texas are bombarded with calls from customers whose roofs have been damaged by hail. Large hailstones can sometimes dent a metal roof, but they are unlikely to cause a leak. On the other hand, asphalt shingles can be cracked or broken by hail, increasing the likelihood that a roof leak will develop.
How Much Is Your Budget for Roofing Services?
If you compare the costs for installing economically priced asphalt shingles to a high-end metal roof, the difference can be a bit of a shock. The labor for installing a metal roof will be more because installation requires special tools and equipment, and the materials are also more expensive. However, if you compare the difference in costs between high-end asphalt shingles and a low- or medium-range metal roof, there is less of a gap. You should also talk to your roof contractor about the costs involved to maintain each type of roof. Metal roofs usually need little maintenance, but they may need to be repainted every 15 or 20 years to look their best. Asphalt shingles typically require more maintenance, but the lifetime costs may be less.
Do You Have Only One Layer of Roofing?
If you have two layers of roofing, you cannot install the third layer. However, if you only have a single layer of roofing that is in good condition, you can install a metal roof without having to remove the old material. This can save you time and money.
Do You Want to Reduce Your Energy Costs for Cooling Your Home or Heating It?
Most homeowners in Central Texas spend more to cool their homes than to heat them, but your situation could be different. If you want to reduce your energy bill for cooling your home, metal roofs are better at preventing hot air from entering the living spaces. Asphalt shingles are better at absorbing heat, so they are preferable if you need to reduce your energy costs for heating your home.
If You Need Help to Decide, Contact Alpha Roofing
At Alpha Roofing, we understand that it can be challenging to choose the right type of roof for your home. We can help you select the roof that best matches your home’s architecture, your budget, and your preferences. We are an award-winning roof contractor with superior references and an impeccable reputation. We serve customers in Central Texas with a full range of roofing services, including the installation of metal roofs, asphalt shingles, gutters, skylights, attic insulation, and flashing. We also repair chimneys and roofs, and we offer maintenance plans for residential roofing, moss and debris removal, and metal fabrication. Contact us for a free quote by completing the online form or calling 512-777-1086.
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