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Cost of a Metal Roof vs Shingles (2024)

Posted By: Jake Hofer

When it comes to roofing materials, metal and shingle roofs are two popular choices for homeowners. Each has its own set of advantages and disadvantages, and the cost is a significant factor in making a decision. In this blog post, we will delve into:

  • The cost comparison between metal and shingle roofs
  • The pros and cons of each roofing material
  • The different types available within each category

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Pros and Cons of Shingle Roofs

an asphalt shingle roof

Shingle roofs have been a staple in the roofing industry for decades, and they come in various materials, including asphalt, wood, slate, and more. Let’s start by discussing the advantages and disadvantages of shingle roofs.

✅ Pros of Shingle Roofs:

  • Cost-Effective: Shingle roofs are generally more budget-friendly upfront compared to metal roofs, making them an attractive option for homeowners on a tight budget.
  • Aesthetic Variety: Shingle roofs offer a wide range of colors, styles, and textures, allowing homeowners to choose a look that complements their home’s architecture.
  • Easy Repairs: When a shingle roof sustains damage, it’s relatively simple and cost-effective to repair or replace individual shingles, as opposed to an entire roof.
  • Easy Installation: Shingle roofs are lightweight and easy to install, which can reduce labor costs and installation time.
  • Noise Insulation: Asphalt shingles, in particular, provide decent noise insulation, helping to reduce outside noise from rain or hail.

❌ Cons of Shingle Roofs:

  • Shorter Lifespan: Shingle roofs have a shorter lifespan compared to metal roofs. On average, they last 20-30 years, which means homeowners may face more frequent replacements.
  • Vulnerable to Weather: Shingle roofs can be susceptible to damage from severe weather conditions like hail, wind, and heavy snow, potentially leading to costly repairs.
  • Maintenance Required: Regular maintenance, such as cleaning and periodic inspections, is necessary to ensure the longevity of shingle roofs.
  • Environmental Impact: Asphalt shingles, in particular, contribute to landfill waste when they reach the end of their lifespan, as they are not easily recyclable.

Types of Shingle Roofs

  • Asphalt Shingles: These are the most common and affordable type of shingle roofs. They come in various styles and colors, making them a versatile choice for many homeowners.
  • Wood Shingles/Shakes: Wood shingles and shakes offer a rustic and natural look. They are a bit more expensive than asphalt shingles but can last longer when properly maintained.
  • Slate Shingles: Slate shingles are known for their durability and elegance. However, they are one of the costliest options due to their premium materials and skilled installation requirements.
  • Metal Shingles: Metal shingles mimic the appearance of traditional shingles but offer the durability and longevity of metal roofing.

Pros and Cons of Metal Roofs

installing metal shingles on a roof

Metal roofs have gained popularity in recent years due to their durability and energy efficiency. Let’s explore their pros and cons.

✅ Pros of Metal Roofs:

  • Exceptional Longevity: Metal roofs can last 50 years or more, making them a long-term investment that may outlive the homeowner.
  • Durability: Metal roofs are highly resistant to various weather conditions, including hail, heavy rain, and wind, reducing the risk of damage and the need for repairs.
  • Energy Efficiency: Many metal roofs are designed with reflective coatings that can help reduce cooling costs by reflecting the sun’s heat, leading to energy savings.
  • Low Maintenance: Metal roofs require minimal maintenance, mainly consisting of occasional inspections and cleaning.
  • Environmental Benefits: Metal roofs are often made from recycled materials and are fully recyclable at the end of their lifespan, making them an environmentally friendly choice.

❌ Cons of Metal Roofs:

  • Higher Initial Cost: Metal roofs tend to be more expensive upfront compared to shingle roofs. However, their long lifespan can offset this initial investment over time.
  • Noise: Some homeowners may find that metal roofs can be noisy during heavy rain or hailstorms. However, proper insulation can mitigate this issue.
  • Limited Aesthetic Options: While metal roofs have come a long way in terms of design, they may not offer as wide a range of aesthetic choices as shingle roofs.
  • Installation Complexity: Installing a metal roof typically requires skilled professionals, which can add to the installation cost.

Types of Metal Roofs

  • Standing Seam Metal Roof: This type features vertical panels with raised seams that lock together, providing a sleek and modern appearance.
  • Metal Shingles: Metal shingles mimic the appearance of traditional shingles and come in various styles, including slate, wood, and clay, offering versatility in design.
  • Metal Tiles: Metal tiles provide an attractive option for homeowners seeking a traditional or Mediterranean look, often replicating the appearance of clay tiles.
  • Corrugated Metal Roof: Corrugated metal roofs are known for their strength and durability, making them suitable for industrial or agricultural buildings.

Cost Difference Between Metal and Shingle Roofs

The cost difference between metal and shingle roofs can vary depending on various factors, including the type of material, installation complexity, and location. Here is a rough cost comparison:

Shingle Roof Costs:

On average, asphalt shingle roofs cost between $3 to $5 per square foot installed, while higher-end options like wood or slate shingles can range from $7 to $15 per square foot installed. Keep in mind that these prices can fluctuate based on your location and the specific shingle type.

Metal Roof Costs:

Metal roofs are generally more expensive upfront, with costs ranging from $7 to $12 per square foot installed for basic metal roofing materials like steel or aluminum. Premium options, such as copper or zinc, can cost significantly more, often exceeding $20 per square foot installed.

While metal roofs are pricier at the outset, they offer a substantial advantage in terms of longevity and reduced maintenance costs. Over the long term, the durability and energy efficiency of metal roofs can lead to potential savings in energy bills and fewer replacements.

Get A Professional Metal Roof Installation!

In the end, the decision between a metal and shingle roof should be based on your budget, aesthetic preferences, and long-term goals. Shingle roofs may be more cost-effective upfront and offer a wide variety of styles, but they come with a shorter lifespan and maintenance requirements. On the other hand, metal roofs may have a higher initial cost but provide exceptional durability, energy efficiency, and a longer lifespan.To make an informed decision, consider your priorities and consult with roofing professionals to get accurate quotes and recommendations based on your specific needs and location. At Built Right Roofing, we can help by offering you the advice only a professional roofing contractor can give! Contact us today to get started!

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