No one looks forward to the expense of a new roof, but eventual replacement is usually a necessary part of homeownership. One benefit of a new roof is you will be able to choose the material. Before making that choice, though, there are a few things that you need to consider.
Budget is likely the most important consideration since you will be limited by the amount you are willing and able to spend. Asphalt shingle roofs are typically the least expensive option, at least in the short term, but these also come in a range of budget categories. Simple shingles in a limited range of colors are at the lower end of the spectrum, with custom-designed, energy-efficient architectural shingles at the higher end of the budget arc. There are also tile, slate, and metal roofing options. These usually cost more initially, but they tend to have a longer life and require less maintenance overall compared to asphalt.
2. Ownership Length
Another consideration is how long you plan to own the home. If you will be moving within the next five years or so, you may not have time to fully recoup the investment in a more expensive roofing material. It may make more financial sense to opt for a low-cost asphalt roof without any bells and whistles. Another option, particularly if you plan to sell in the next couple of years, may be reroofing. A reroof is when an asphalt shingle roof is installed over the old asphalt shingles. In order to reroof, the old roof sheathing and basic structure must still be in good condition, and there can not be more than one layer of old shingles present. The cost of a reroof is much less than a full replacement.
3. Resale Value
Don't forget resale value when choosing the material, though. For example, if most of the homes in your neighborhood have upgraded to tile roofs, you may be greatly reducing the value of your home if you opt for the cheapest asphalt shingles on the market. You will need to carefully weigh the cost of the roofing material to the expected increase in resale value in order to make an informed decision.
4. Maintenance Needs
The last thing to consider is maintenance, especially if you plan to stay in the home for a long time. All roofing materials need some maintenance, but certain materials are lower-maintenance than others. Metal and slate roofs tend to require the least maintenance, with tile a close second. Asphalt generally requires the most ongoing maintenance to guard against damage.
Contact a local roofing contractor to learn more about the roofing options available to you.