Exploring the costs and benefits of metal roofing

Putting a new roof on your home is a big investment. If you want one that’s really going to last, you might want to consider metal roofing. Metal is available in numerous styles and colors and can look like wood, slate or even asphalt shingles.

Metal roofing isn’t new, but it’s growing in popularity across the country. When it came time to replace their white tile roof, homeowners Douglas and Nancy Wood decided to go with metal.

“We chose the metal roof for its look – very Florida–like – for its longevity, and (because it’s) maintenance–free,” said Douglas Wood.

“It is the most durable roof you can put on your house. It is also the most energy efficient you can put on your house, and lastly, it’s the least maintenance that is required of any roofing in the industry,” roofing company Vice President Ryan Westfall said. “The only con to a metal roof is the cost. If you can afford a metal roof, it’s definitely the way to go. It will be the last roof you ever put on.”

Metal roofs can cost two to three times as much as asphalt shingles, but properly installed, can last 30 to 50 years. Most metal roofing materials are formed into panels or sheets which are laid on the roof structure and then fastened.

“What a lot of homeowners don’t know is that metal roofs actually come in an assortment of colors,” added Westfall. “You can get white, brown, black, beige, and gray. Any color you want really. There is actually a very large color palette for metal roofs.”

Angie’s List says you should make sure your roofing contractor has plenty of experience installing metal roofs, and don’t forget to ask about insurance.

“Insurance is really important when it comes to roofers, because let’s face it, they are on your roof, they’re on ladders on your property, so you want to be sure your contractor has both general liability and worker’s comp insurance. Ask for proof of insurance, and call and confirm that it’s still valid. This is important because any contractor that won’t show you this proof of insurance, you need to walk away from,” said Angie’s List founder Angie Hicks.

As you weigh the pros and cons of metal roofing, Angie’s List says to check with your homeowner’s association and your city to find out if metal roofs are allowed in your neighborhood.