The 6 Best Roofing Materials

Your roof is a defining feature of your home, both in terms of outward style and in its crucial structural role. Being a major part of the home’s appearance, people take careful consideration into picking out their roofing material and customizing it to fit their aesthetic. It’s important to choose a match conducive to the house design, but you also need to consider the strength and durability of the material. Factor in questions like how reliable it is, what the maintenance will look like, how the material responds to weather, and what the cost will be. These pieces are all important to consider before purchasing. Let’s go over the six major types of roofing materials together.


The majority of homes in the U.S. use asphalt shingles for their roofing material because they’re affordable, easy to find, and customizable. There are two main types of asphalt: fiberglass shingles and organic asphalt shingles. Fiberglass shingles are covered in asphalt and are popular for their lightweight durability. Organic asphalt shingles are almost nonexistent today, but consist of asphalt-covered paper. While harder to work with, they offer more durability than fiberglass. 

Asphalt does tend to be of lower quality, which results in a higher replacement rate. These roof shingles don’t usually have much insulation, unlike other roofing materials. However, with options now available for architectural asphalt shingles, you can get much better durability out of this roofing material. 

Wood Shingles and Shake

The look of wood as a roofing material adds a touch of natural elegance to a home. It’s sleek, unique, and can be rustic as well. Wood shingles are cut by a machine to look organized and uniform, with clean, sharp edges. Wood shakes are cut by hand, which makes them more expensive. They are thicker pieces that give rise to a more rustic look. When shopping for wood shingles, you want to make sure to buy Class A fire rating wood that’s been treated. Non-treated wood will have a Class C rating, which is prohibited in many areas due to wildfires. Most wood roofs will last 5-10 years longer than asphalt, depending on location.


Metal roofs are popular due to their durability, eco-friendliness, and the unique style they add to homes. They’re available in panels or shingles, and come in aluminum, copper, stainless steel, and zinc. Metal roofing will last longer than asphalt and wood and is compatible with solar panels. Most metal is made from recycled materials as well. Metals usually have a Class A fire rating and are resistant to most weather elements. Because of these factors, metal is one of the more expensive, but best roofing materials on the market. 

Concrete and Clay Tiles

Concrete and clay tiles add a fun splash of character to a house, with their unique texture and style. Clay tiles are very durable, but also weigh a lot and must be installed by professionals. Concrete tiles are not as expensive as clay but are still heavy. They are customizable and add a unique aesthetic to homes. Both concrete and clay are long-lasting but more expensive than other roofing materials. 


Slate is an extremely durable and distinct material that highlights European style and understated elegance. Natural slate tiles are the most durable roofing material out there, but they are extremely heavy, and as a result, costly. They don’t require much maintenance due to their durability, and can usually go a lifetime without being replaced. It does require professional installation and is not cheap to come by. 


Some synthetic roofing materials include rubber, plastic, and polymer. They are popular because they can give the same look as slate and wood, without the hefty price tag. Sometimes you might sacrifice quality with these materials though, as they may not last as long as others. 

Making the Decision

There are a lot of great roofing materials to choose from, which can make it difficult when trying to find the best roofing for your home. Consider the style of your house and how long you plan on living there. You also need to consider your budget, especially if you have a large surface area on your roof and are going to need a lot of material. Asphalt shingles are a short-term solution, but desirable to most because of being the cheapest roofing material. If you have a home that would benefit from metal, wood, concrete, or slate, strongly consider spending extra money in exchange for a durable material that will last a long time and add aesthetic to the house. 

If you have any questions about roofing, contact us at Perimeter Roofing. We are trained in roof installations and repairs and offer only the best customer service. We can help you make the right decision when it comes to picking out the best roofing material. Learn more about us, and set up an appointment today. We service locations across the southeastern United States including Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Florida, Texas, Alabama, and Louisiana.


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