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The Cost of a Metal Roof vs. Shingles

April 21, 2023

When the time comes for a new roof on your home, several factors must be considered, including the benefits each material provides, what will look best, and the replacement cost. Unfortunately, determining which roof option is cheapest isn't always cut and dry, as what appears to cost less may cost you more when considering the roof's life expectancy, energy efficiency, and impact on property value. We provide an in-depth look at the cost of metal roofs vs. shingles and the factors that impact the overall cost of a new roof.

6 Factors That Impact the Cost of Your Roof

Having a better idea of how much your roof will cost upfront and over its life will help you make a better comparison of the roof replacement options. Here are six factors that affect the cost of your roof.

  1. Cost of Materials

    Shingle roofs have some of the lowest upfront costs, with an average of $160 per 100 square feet in material costs. Higher-quality shingle options may increase the total bill, but the materials on the average asphalt roofing project cost between $5,000 and $10,000. That range doesn't include installation costs. Metal roofs cost considerably more upfront, with materials costing about two to three times more than you'd spend on asphalt shingles. However, metal roofs typically last much longer, require fewer repairs, provide greater energy efficiency, and aid in increasing the home value.

  2. Labor Costs

    When comparing the labor costs for installing metal roofs vs. shingle roofs, you'll find that they differ widely, just like the material costs. Installing a shingle roof will usually cost around $200–$300 per square foot, while metal roofing installation might be closer to $300–$500 per square foot. For a 1,500-square-foot roof, the total labor cost of metal roofs vs. shingles may come in at around:

    • $4,500–$7,500 for a metal roof
    • $3,000–$4,500 for a shingle roof
    Unfortunately, roof size isn't the only factor when determining labor expenses. Metal roofs take longer and can be more challenging to install. But the type of metal or shingles used for your roof also factors into labor costs.

  3. Size and Complexity of Your Roof

    Whether you choose metal or shingles for your new roof, the size and complexity will impact the total cost. The more complex your roof's design, the more manpower and time it will take to complete your roofing installation, which means the labor costs will increase. In addition to roof features and steepness, other factors come into play. These include:

    • Roof accessibility
    • Plumbing and gas vents
    • Roof height
    • Valleys on your roof
    These factors can make the job take longer and impact the total replacement cost.

  4. Existing Roof Issues

    Existing roofing issues will also affect your overall installation costs, regardless of the type of material you choose for your new roof. Technicians must perform the necessary repairs before laying a new roof. For example, if your roof sustained severe water damage, causing the underlying wood structures to rot, the deck would need to be replaced and the surrounding damage repaired before the replacement service could begin. Otherwise, the weight of the new materials wouldn't be adequately supported, which could shorten their lifespan and increase the risk of other issues. Repair costs can vary significantly depending on the damage's type, extent, and location.

  5. Warranty

    The warranty coverage on your new roof depends on the type of materials used and is another vital factor in the overall cost of metal roofs vs. shingles. Most asphalt shingle manufacturers offer a full warranty for the first few years, typically on defective products, followed by a prorated or limited warranty in the following years. Some metal roofing manufacturers offer a lifetime warranty. The expected longevity of each type is also worth considering. Metal roofs containing weaker metals, such as corrugated metal or aluminum, may last for up to 30 years. However, more durable metal roofs, such as those made from copper or steel, can last up to 100 years. By contrast, a shingle roof might last between 10 and 30 years before requiring replacement.

  6. Maintenance

    Roof maintenance includes regular inspections and prompt repairs when damage occurs, and it's essential to keep up with it to help your roof last as long as possible. The cost to maintain your roof depends on the materials used and their age. Metal roofs are generally more expensive to repair than asphalt roofs because of higher material and labor costs. However, asphalt roofs are less durable than metal roofs; shingles may require frequent maintenance and repairs.

While the cost of metal roofs vs. shingles is an important factor to consider when replacing your roof, you may be able to put off replacement by working with the team at Roof Maxx. We offer roof preservation services, helping asphalt shingles last longer. Our company is committed to providing our customers with the best and most affordable roofing solutions. We've helped thousands of homeowners avoid costly roof replacements by extending the lifespans of existing roofs. Get your free estimate today!