Having a functional roof is essential, and your roofing materials keep you safe from the elements. You can also focus on making your home more energy efficient and add curb appeal. However, have you ever considered the cheapest roofing material and what it might be?

roof maintenance checklistWe’re here to talk about the cheapest roofing material to replace today, and that term is mainly subjective. It’s crucial to compare price points because you need to balance the cost and the type of roofing material you will consider.

Most homeowners are on a budget and don’t have too much money to spend. Therefore, they require a cost-effective roofing material that protects their homes without paying more than necessary.

How Much Will a New Roof Cost?

New roof installation costs about $9,000 on average. However, you can spend up $12,000 or more if you prefer architectural shingles. The price gets distributed between labor and materials.

Pricing Factors

How to Choose the Best Roofing MaterialThree primary factors determine the cost of your roof replacement:

  • Working Conditions – The contractors must be safe while working. Hot or cold weather conditions might impact the duration of your project and the ease of doing the work. Milder conditions mean that the job gets completed faster.
  • Damages – Lucky homeowners don’t have any damage to deal with, so they may not have to replace the roof. In that case, they can choose the most affordable roofing material.
  • Material Removal – Homes with asphalt roofing generally have many layers of asphalt shingles to remove before the new roof can be put on. This takes more time and effort.

What Is the Cheapest Way to Replace a Roof? What Roofing Material Is the Least Expensive?

Everyone wants to find the cheapest roofing materials, but they all have varying budgets. The term “cheap” might be different for you than for your neighbor. While finding similar materials in your price range is possible, you must also consider your preferences.

For example, do you like flat roofing materials? How much maintenance and repair work are you willing to do throughout the roof’s lifespan? These are questions to consider.

Asphalt Shingles

How to Choose the Best Roofing Material

If you’re looking for the cheapest roof replacement possible, the asphalt shingle is your best friend regarding installation and purchase price. You should expect to spend $1 to $2 per square foot, so it’s the cheapest roofing material and great for budget shoppers.

Three types of asphalt shingle roofing options are three-tab, dimensional, and luxury shingles. The most affordable roofing material of those is the three-tab version.

The dimensional asphalt shingle is layered, so the thickness and depth make them appear more like wood shakes or slate. Many homeowners like dimensional asphalt shingles, and they’re still relatively inexpensive.

Then, you have luxury asphalt shingles. They’re often called premium asphalt shingles and are top-of-the-line. They look like slate shingles and offer an appearance that stands out compared to other asphalt shingles.

Be aware that an asphalt roof will last anywhere from 15 to 20 years, though an architectural asphalt shingle roof might look great for up to three decades. You will likely require more maintenance with asphalt shingles, as well.

Metal Roofing

How to Choose the Best Roofing MaterialCorrugated metal roofing is also one of the cheapest roofing materials. You should expect to spend $1.80 to $2.50 per square foot, but many colors accommodate your preferred decor and design.

Steel roofing costs more than corrugated metal roofs at about $3.50/square foot. Though there are higher upfront costs, the durability means you don’t have many repair fees in the future.

However, if you don’t like traditional metal roofs, you also have galvalume, copper, aluminum, and zinc to choose from. Galvalume and galvanized are the most popular because they last so long.

Overall, metal is noisy but environmentally friendly and stylish. Plus, it can last about 50 years.

roof repair versus roof replacementConcrete Tile Roofing

Concrete tiles often mimic the appearance of clay tiles and wood shakes. They’re fire-resistant and durable, but they are quite heavy. Therefore, they require specialty roof construction to make them safe.

how to choose best type of roofing materialTPO Roofing Materials

TPO roofs use flexible membranes made of ethylene-propylene rubber. You can find two thicknesses and various lengths and widths. Though this material is newer in residential roofs, it’s got a long lifespan.

Roof Repair or Replacement - Consider This Before Hiring a Roofing CompanyClay Tile Roofing

Clay tile roofing is made of natural clay, and you often see them on Mediterranean-style houses. However, the newer, more modern versions resemble slate or wood shakes.

roof of a residential houseWood Shingles

Wooden shakes are often called luxury shingles and are ideal for asphalt roof replacement. If you want to upgrade, the appearance of the wood makes them unique and stylish, though they can be a little more expensive than other materials.

Roof Deck

roofing contractors working on roof

Your roofing materials rest on the roof decking, which might be called sheathing by some professionals. Generally, it’s made of wood. Before plywood was invented, plank decking featured rectangular and long wooden boards. However, sheet decking is the best choice now. You can find it as plywood or OSB (oriented strand board).

The type of decking you choose for a roof replacement or repair will impact your overall price.

roofing contractors installing synthetic underlaymentUnderlayment

Roofing underlayment is the part that sits between the roof deck and shingles, and it’s generally OSB or plywood. We often install it onto the roof deck, which offers a second layer of protection from wind and rain.

You can choose between felt and synthetic underlayment. Each has its benefits and drawbacks, but I felt it is generally the most affordable choice.

roofing crews on residential roofDrip Edge and Roof Flashing

Roof flashing is the thin metal layer that roofers install to direct any water from roof areas, such as skylights, chimneys, solar panels, and dormers. The drip edge is similar, but it works to remove water from the fascia so that it doesn’t seep under your roofing materials.

aerial view of roof replacementVentilation

Ventilation for roofs is crucial. It will allow the air to flow into the attic space and keeps your home’s atmosphere more comfortable. Plus, it will prevent moisture from getting into the attic and causing damage.

Alternatives to Roof Replacement

roofing crews on residential roofThough roof replacement is what most homeowners call it when they put on a new asphalt roof, you may not need a whole roof replacement. Many times, we can remove the oldest roofing materials and add new ones that are correctly installed. This is often called a re-roof.

We’re not cutting corners here. Instead, those on a tight budget don’t have to choose a new roof system to put on dimensional shingles or any other material. The exception to that is the concrete tiles. In this case, you will need an entire roof because the material is too heavy for most structures.

Why Choose Us

sagging rooflinesWhether you’re seeking a roof replacement or re-roof, you need the best roofing contractors to help you. We will determine what you have currently on your home’s roof and help you find the cheapest roofing material.

Overall, asphalt shingles are the least expensive to replace, so if you want to have a new asphalt shingle roof, you can go with 3-tab shingles or dimensional shingle.

A cheap roof doesn’t have to mean that it’s poorly constructed. Our team can help you save more money while protecting your investment. Call Water Damage and Roofing of Austin at (512) 820-6505 for a free quote.