Putting a Roof Over Your Head
When people move into their new homes, they’re often thankful for having a “roof over their head,” but while lots of thought and detail goes into the features of bathrooms, bedrooms and community spaces, sometimes that roof can be an afterthought.
While the homebuilding professionals at WillowTree are more than capable of walking you through all the individual details of the design and construction process, here are some important things about roof building to consider:
There are many different types of roofs.
The most popular roof out there is the classic gable roof. That’s the triangular style most people draw when they sketch a house on a piece of paper. It’s cost-effective, recognizable and functional. The structure rises to a triangular point on two sides, with the roof lying diagonally on them.
The hip roof style is right on the heels of the gable roof for being the most popular. Instead of a structure rising to meet the roof ridge, the roof slopes upward from all sides of the structure.
Mansard roofs have been around for centuries, and feature “two slopes on all the four sides where the lower slope becomes steeper than the upper one.” It maximizes attic space, and was used in the olden days as a way to evade taxes by hiding square footage.
There are plenty more styles, including custom combinations that employ multiple styles at once.
There are also five main types of roofing materials.Not only are there different styles of roofs, but the roofing materials vary, too. The most popular material for roofs is asphalt shingles. More than 3/4 of homes have these on their roofs, and it’s easy to see why. They’re the most cost-effective, they come in a bunch of colors and styles, and they work in just about every environment. But, speaking of the environment, these petroleum-based products are the least eco-friendly.
Another popular material for a roof is wood shake shingles. The cousin/predecessor to the asphalt shingle, these are made out of wood, giving any structure a cabin-like, rustic look. The downside is that wood shake shingles require more maintenance than the more modern shingles.
A metal roof is another popular option. It’s the longest-lasting — realistically could last as long as the house, does the best at fighting the elements (wind, snow, fire, bugs, etc.), and is good for preventing rot. While not as light as shingles, metal is certainly lighter than tile or concrete, running 50-150 pounds per square — which is 100 square feet — as opposed to 750-900 pounds per square. You buy it at a premium, though — $150-600 per square. It can dent with hailstones or other falling hazards, and can be noisy during inclement weather.
You’ve probably seen a mission-style house, with its red clay-colored tiles giving a structure a distinct look. Clay and concrete tiles are good for adding texture and visual interest to a building. These tiles are long-lasting, non-combustible and energy-efficient. They’re pretty spendy, though, running you between $300-500 per square. But once you drop that cash, you can expect that roof to last you up to 50 years.
Want your roof to last longer than you? Slate tiles can last up to 100 years! These stone slabs are natural as can be, extremely durable, great for insulation and incredible for curb appeal. Like clay and concrete, they’re fireproof and sustainable. The big problem is they’re the most expensive option, running between $1,000 and $6,000 per square installed. They’re heavy (800-1,500 pounds per square) and aren’t necessarily able to be walked on.
WillowTree is here to make your roof dreams come true.
Not sure what the best style and/or materials should be for your custom home? Give WillowTree a call and we’ll work out the details.