New call-to-action
The Metal Roofing and Siding Blog

Helpful information for homeowners, building owners, and anyone interested in metal roofing and siding

Blog Home

Posted by McElroy Metal ● Jan 9, 2024 8:00 AM

What Matters Most? Roof Replacement Considerations

Most people don’t realize how tricky it can be to make a big home improvement decision like roof replacement. At least, not until you’re involved in the process.

Like most home maintenance decisions, a lot goes into choosing the right replacement roof for your home. Let’s take a closer look.

What Matters Most? Roof Replacement ConsiderationsDeciding Your Must Haves: How to Rank Roof Replacement Factors for Your Home

One of the hardest things about a big home improvement project like roof replacement is that there are so many things to consider. Not only is this a big-ticket project no matter what you decide, but it’s also a commitment you will have to live with for a long time. So, deciding which roof replacement factors matter most to you is even more important. Here are some of the top things you need to consider:

1. Aesthetics

We’ve put aesthetics at the top of the list because, in some ways, this is the most emotional of all the roof replacement factors you’ll need to consider. 

While some people don’t mind what kind of roof they have, some have very fixed ideas about what they like and don’t. So, if you love the look of natural slate roofing or thatch and are willing to do whatever it takes to have them on your home, none of the other factors on this list might matter. 

Before you consider any of the other issues on this list, decide if there is any type of roof that you simply have to have on your home. If there is, while you should still get multiple quotes and find out as much as you can about everything else you need to know, it is a matter of finding the best version of the roof system you love. 

2. Durability

Another significant factor for many people considering replacing their roofs is durability. 

A roof replacement is a big project; no matter your choice, it will come with a relatively hefty price tag. Most homeowners want to find the most durable option possible, so they don’t have to consider major repairs or replacements for many years. 

Remember that durability is not universal, and some external factors can affect your roof's expected lifespan, so you should speak to roofing professionals and manufacturers and share where you are installing the roof. There may be one type of roofing or another that offers a significantly longer lifespan in your area if durability is one of the top decision-making factors influencing your final choice. 

3. Budget and ROI

The next thing that plays a relatively significant role in your roof replacement decision-making process is finances. In this case, you will probably want to consider both the upfront costs of the roof systems you’re considering and the return on investment. 

In the roofing world, ROI is based on the product's lifespan and any maintenance and repair costs you can expect to pay over the product’s lifespan. For example, while some styles of metal roofing cost more initially, with a five to six-decade life expectancy and minimal maintenance costs, metal roofing can often be the least expensive roof to purchase in the long run.

If you’re considering selling your home relatively soon, you might also want to talk to a realtor to find out which kinds of roofs are in the highest demand in your area. 

roof installation-14. Availability and Installation Speed

When you’re doing something like replacing your roof, time is of the essence. Your roof protects everything in your home, and the last thing you want to happen is to have a severe storm while your roof is off or if it’s been damaged, while you’re waiting for the replacement. 

There are two big factors to consider when looking into the timing of a roof replacement: product availability and installation speed. 

Some popular roofing systems and colors might be readily available, but some roofing products are made to order or might even be imported. If you’re in a hurry to get a new roof, you will want to look for products that are easy to find in your area. 

When it comes to installation time, consider the time required to install the roofing material and any changes that might need to be made to the roof structure to accommodate your new roofing. 

5. Environmental Friendliness

As global warming concerns increase, more and more consumers list environmental friendliness as one of their top criteria in product selection. 

Some roofing products might be made from recycled material or partially recycled materials. Other types of roofing might be recyclable. All of these things are factors in deciding how green a specific kind of roof material is, and they should all be considered. If environmental friendliness is a non-negotiable decision of your replacement roof material choice, consider that metal roofing is made from recycled material and is 100% recyclable at the end of its product life. Few if any, other products can boast the same.

Solar Panels 46. Replacement Roofs and Solar Power Systems

Some kinds of roofing, like asphalt shingles, offer a lifespan much shorter than the solar systems available today. So, if you're planning to install solar in conjunction with your roof replacement or later down the road, it's only logical to consider the life expectancy of the roof you select to install under the solar system.  With a life expectancy of 60 + years, metal far outlasts your solar system, so it makes a perfect host for those seeking an environmentally friendly roofing system. 

Also, if you're considering investing in solar, be sure to check into government programs. There are plenty of incentives for solar power installations in most states

7. Roof Maintenance and Upkeep

Some people don’t mind doing annual home maintenance tasks. Others want a lock-up-and-go lifestyle with as little maintenance as possible. This is another key point to consider when considering a roof replacement. 

Generally, roofing materials that cost a little more to install, like slate and standing seam metal roofing, require less maintenance and offer longer lifespans. 

In contrast, less expensive roofing materials like asphalt shingles require much more time, effort, and money to maintain and offer the shortest lifespan. 

The closer you get to the estimated lifespan of any roof system, the more time and money you can expect to spend on maintenance and repairs, too, so you should factor lifetime costs and not just the installation cost into every roof replacement decision. 

Rain on metal roof8. Weather Matters

The last thing we need to discuss about making roof replacement decisions is the weather and climate in your area. 

If you live in a very rainy climate, wood shakes and shingles might not be a good idea because frequent exposure to moisture can cause them to degrade faster. Likewise, if you live in an area with frequent forest fires nearby, choosing non-combustible materials like metal roofing may make more sense than flammable roofing materials like thatch or wood shingles. 

Even the proximity to the ocean can affect the expected lifespan and performance of your roof replacement material, so you’d need to make different decisions for a beach house and one in the city based on that alone. 

Take Your Time, Get All the Facts, and Then Decide

The most important thing we hope you’ve taken away from this article regarding roof replacement decisions is that you should never rush into anything. 

Even if you're under pressure, it’s important to get all the facts about each possible roofing solution to make informed and educated choices. 

Sometimes, people find that the roof material they had their hearts set on is not the right one for their project, and there’s a much better option. Sometimes, the product you thought was the right choice turns out to be just that. 

Whatever happens with your project, taking the time to do the research will save you time and money down the line, so it’s always a worthwhile process.

Learn everything you need to know about Residential Metal Roofing. Check out our metal roofing resources for inspiration and answers to your questions.

About McElroy Metal

Since 1963, McElroy Metal has served the construction industry with quality products and excellent customer service. The employee-owned components manufacturer is headquartered in Bossier City, La., and has 14 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: Roof Replacement

Comments on this article:

Scroll down to the bottom to submit a comment and join the conversation. Need help or have a question? Please contact us. Looking for a distributor or contractor? Please click here to get started.