Metal & Copper Roofing Blog

The Price Differences Between Metal and Composition Roofs

We were contacted recently by a homeowner in the research stage of a re-roof project. She's investigating roofing options and was told by an installer that the average price premium for metal over composition is about five times the cost. Unless you're comparing the cheapest composition shingles you can find to a custom copper or zinc roof, that's not accurate. Here's what to know about the price differences between metal and composition roofs.

MRN Energy Star Shake Black 3The Price Difference Between Metal and Composition Roofing

The difference in prices for metal roofs and composition roofs is a common question. It's a question I've answered so many times in the past that I could probably write a response in my sleep, but to folks going down this road for the first time, it’s always a very serious and new dilemma.

There are two things to keep in mind. First, the expected thing: metal roof prices are certainly higher than asphalt shingles for the vast majority of applications. Second is the unexpected thing: a lot of roofers are bad sources of information about an accurate comparison.

Yes, Metal Roofs Cost More Than Composition Roofs

You can certainly expect to pay more for a metal roof when comparing to asphalt composition. There are a lot of variables in the price of either job, but as a very rough rule of thumb, you should know that the material costs more (often in the range of two to three times the price), and the labor to install a metal roof is usually about double as well. For roof contractors skilled in doing both types of roof materials, you should find that the price of a new metal roof should be at least double that of the composition roof.

An Unreliable Source

It may seem surprising, but roofers aren’t the best people to ask about any and all roofing prices. The reason is that most roofers want the fastest and easiest possible job, and metal just isn’t usually that winner in that competition. Compared to installing a composition roof, metal roofs can take twice as long to complete, even longer if there are a lot of details on the roof. For this reason alone, a lot of roofers just don’t want to be bothered with the greater detail work and slower production time of metal. It’s in their best interest to direct anyone asking toward something that they can do in half the time, and who can blame them? But rather than admitting their true motivation, some choose to put an exorbitant price tag on a metal roof in the hopes that it will discourage interest. 
That's not always the case. Some roofers, especially the better ones, are just as comfortable with metal as they are with composition and so their price reflects the actual difference in costs.

Accurate Information

If your motivation is driven by a product that will offer longevity, and not just price, getting an accurate idea of what a metal roof would cost is a good idea. We can offer pricing information for a variety of different metal roofing materials, and we can recommend installers in different areas who are fully capable of installing a metal roof. Don't be put off by an installer who warns you that metal roofing is far too expensive - you'd be surprised at how affordable a good metal roof can be. Contact us today for more information.