Roofing Options

Your roof will protect you from the elements and is a defining feature of your home. While roofing may seem easy to overlook, doing so and “settling” on roofing materials for your new custom home or as a part of a renovation is a mistake. With the styles popular today—from a modern skillion to gabled, dormered to salt-box, shed to bonnet—your roof can enhance the appearance of your home, as can your choice of roofing materials.

With many years of experience building and renovating homes in the area, our team knows which materials are best for local weather conditions, which meet local codes or require specialized installation, and how certain materials can enhance the look of your home, expressing your personal style and making the statement you want to make about the place you call home.

Asphalt Shingles

Currently, about 75% of all residential homes in the United States are roofed with asphalt shingles. A relatively affordable option, asphalt shingles are available in myriad colors and styles. You can expect such a roof to last for at least 10 years and as many as 30. (And, in fact, many are guaranteed to last for 30 years.)

Asphalt shingles may be made of fiberglass or, less commonly, organic materials that include recycled paper (referred to as felt shingles). The organic version has mostly been phased out as they are considered inferior to fiberglass shingles.

In addition to being affordable and attractive, fiberglass shingles provide consistent protection from the elements, are waterproof, and protect from UV rays and fire. Theoretically, they can be recycled into paving materials, but the reality is that most end up in landfills.

The average cost for asphalt shingle roofing is $200 to $400 per square installed (in roofing terms, a square is equal to 100 square feet).

Clay and Concrete Tiles

An ancient form of roofing material, clay and concrete tiles date back centuries. They are durable and attractive, but also very heavy. Fiber cement roofing tiles, composed of a clay and wood composite, are a lighter-weight alternative. Tiles often come in a half-barrel shape (like what you might expect to see on a Spanish villa) and interlock for easy, secure installation. Life expectancy is 50 or more years, and such tiles are waterproof, fire and insect resistant, sun-reflective, and recyclable.

However, they are quite expensive and breakable, and due to their weight, a structural engineer needs to be consulted before installation to ensure your roof framing can support them.

You can expect concrete tiles to cost between $200 and $800 per square installed, while clay tiles will set you back $500 to $1,000 per square installed. 

Metal Roofing

Metal roofing is having a moment, and we’re not talking about your grandparents’ metal roofing or the kind on the barn down the road.

Today’s metal roofing is super stylish and more durable and protective than any other roofing material widely available. It comes in colors and styles to complement any home. Metal roofs may last 100 years (warranties typically offer 30 to 50 years of guaranteed use) and are eco-friendly. In addition to rigid sheets, metal roofing materials may mimic the style of shingles, shakes, and tiles.

Most are made of recycled materials and are surprisingly lightweight. Solar radiant, metal roofing helps keep your home cooler in hot weather, thus keeping energy costs down. They can be installed quickly, shed rain and snow better than most other options, and have high fire ratings. They look great with almost every style of home. They can be louder, amplifying the sounds of the elements, but for some, this is welcome.

And while metal roofs are more expensive, the cost over the long term is similar or less than that of other options when you take durability and longevity into consideration.

You can expect a metal roof to cost between $300 and $700 per square, installed.


Slate is a statement-making roofing material, conjuring images of Tudor cottages and quaint country villages. It also happens to be durable and tough, able to stand up to the harshest elements. Available in numerous colors and sizes, slate tiles are virtually maintenance-free, will last 40 to 60 years, and are waterproof and non-combustible.

In addition to natural stone, composite and vinyl options are also available and deliver the same qualities and longevity as quarried slate, with the added benefits of being lighter in weight and less expensive.

Slate roofing should only be installed by contractors who are well-experienced with the material, and extra care must be taken since slate is breakable.

A slate roof could cost anywhere from $600 to $1,500 per square installed.

Wood Shingles and Shakes

Wood shingles are machine-cut, while shakes are hand-split and more rustic in appearance. They are especially popular for traditional and historical-style homes and can be seen throughout New England and the Mid-Atlantic.

Both are commonly available in cedar, cypress, pine, and redwood. Cedar and redwood, in particular, are moisture and insect-resistant. While more expensive (and possibly less practical) than asphalt, wood roofing will likely last 5 to 10 years longer than asphalt, making the cost competitive.

Wood roofing is more insulating than asphalt, and both shingles and shakes are frequently made from salvaged trees.

If untreated, wood roofing can be high maintenance, requiring frequent cleaning to avoid algae or moss issues and to allow the wood to breathe. Staining and discoloration may occur over several years, and repairs are relatively expensive.

If you’re interested in wood shingle or shake roofing, you can expect to pay $400 to $900 per square installed.

A leader in custom home building and the renovation and remodeling of existing homes, our team has experience installing roofing of all kinds. We know the ins, outs, and nuances of asphalt, metal, clay, slate, and wood roofing and can help guide you to a choice that will both enhance the appearance of your home and provide the durability you need.

For more information, call us or click here to schedule your complimentary, no-obligation consultation.