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Posted by McElroy Metal ● May 31, 2022 4:00 PM

Residential Construction Trends

With inflation higher than it’s been for 40 years and an incredibly tight real estate market, many folks looking for a new home find themselves caught in the proverbial catch-22. Currently, it’s difficult to buy an existing home, and building a new one can also be cost-prohibitive.

Residence Greencastle, PAPhoto courtesy of United Enterprises Construction

While we can’t miraculously fix inflation or supply chain issues, we’re happy to share some of the recent residential construction trends we’ve noticed.  

Different Construction Methods

Traditionally, homes were stick-built with basic materials like 2 x 4’s and trusses. While that construction method is still popular, other construction methods have gained market share. 

Barndominium is a structure that provides both living quarters and hobby/workspaces.  In the early days of this trend, people would build a large machine shed and simply finish a portion of it inside for their homes. Shouse is another term for this fast-growing market segment. 

Initially, the appeal of this building type was limited; however, builders have redefined this concept.  Today’s trends include traditional products and designs like wood siding, wrap-around porches, and multi-level structures.  

While barndominium and shouse structures represent a lifestyle choice, they also offer some key benefits over conventional stick-built homes.  

  • While not guaranteed, combining home and hobby spaces can be more economical than building two stand-alone structures. 
  • Build speed is shorter for Barndominium-style structures.  Owners interested in selling their existing home for the current higher market prices may find the idea of a quicker move-in date appealing. 
  • But one of the most significant features is that these building types require fewer (and often no) interior load-bearing walls.  So they are a natural fit for those owners looking for the popular open concept design.  

Environmentally Friendly Products

Since global warming conversations started dominating the media a few years ago, we’ve seen homeowners take note.  Many folks now put a greater emphasis on selecting products with a lower environmental impact.

Choosing metal roofing over asphalt shingles is a great example. With a 60-year life expectancy, metal roofing offers one of the longest life expectancies for roofing materials, and it’s 100% recyclable at the end of service life. 

So it’s truly a double win! While there’s certainly an appeal to putting a roof on once in their lifetime, environmentally conscious homeowners also appreciate that skipping asphalt shingles helps reduce the 11 million tons of shingles annually that wind up in our landfills, where they take 300 years to decompose. 

Shingles in landfill

We’ve also seen more significant interest in adding solar energy to residential homes. When planning to incorporate solar energy, it’s vital to pick a product for the primary roofing material with a life expectancy as long (and preferably longer) than the solar panels.

Since solar systems offer peak production efficiency for 20-25 years, pairing them with a 12-15 year shingle roof doesn't make sense. In contrast, with a 60-year life expectancy, metal roofing is a great host to solar technology.  To learn more about this concept, check out our case study titled, A Solar-Friendly Metal Roof Tops this Net Zero Post Frame Home.

blunier-builders Photo courtesy of Blunier Builders, Inc.

Color Palettes

While we’ll leave the interior color trends to the interior design folks, we’re happy to share what we see regarding exterior color trends.  Currently, black is the most popular color for residential metal roofing projects. 

While we’ve offered black for 30 + years, it has never been one of our top colors.  That all changed in mid-2021 and is still running strong.

Pole Barn Home with Basketball_Barndominium_Max-Rib_Regal White Wall_Matte Black Roof_ExteriorPhoto courtesy of FBi Buildings

As the photo above illustrates, black metal roofing makes a stunning statement.  However, it’s essential to realize that different qualities of paint are used on metal panels, and the performance you can expect varies significantly.

Allowing someone to convince you otherwise could easily mean that your beautiful black metal roof will look dull and morph from black to gray in just a few short years. To ensure your metal roof keeps its like-new appearance for decades, require a Kynar paint system for the metal panels.

Click here to learn more about metal panel paint systems, how they’re different and why you care!  

Or contact us today to continue the conversation. We’re glad to help make your dream home a reality!

We’d love to hear from you. What other trends do you see in residential construction?

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About McElroy Metal

Since 1963, McElroy Metal has served the construction industry with quality products and excellent customer service. The family-owned components manufacturer is headquartered in Bossier City, La., and has 13 manufacturing facilities across the United States. Quality, service and performance have been the cornerstone of McElroy Metal’s business philosophy and have contributed to the success of the company through the years. As a preferred service provider, these values will continue to be at the forefront of McElroy Metal’s model along with a strong focus on the customer.

Topics: Residential

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