When building a custom home in Northern Michigan, you’re faced with selecting from many roofing options. Of course, style matters but so does selecting the suitable roofing materials that protect your investment.
Beyond materials alone, the proper usage of the material, along with the appropriate design, is critical. Therefore, we always discuss with our clients the different options in both design and materials so that you can rest easy knowing you made the right choice.
Our climate presents challenges, and selecting materials that can hold up to and protect your home from harsh winters, heat, direct sunlight, and moisture is an important decision. Luckily there are many options for an attractive and protective roof.
Roofing Materials for Northern Michigan
Asphalt shingles are the most popular choice due to their lower initial cost and are available in various colors. Asphalt shingles are versatile and work well with complicated rooflines. In the extreme weather conditions that Northern Michigan poses, the average lifespan of asphalt shingles is 15-20 years. Some manufacturers offer premium grades that can extend the lifespan.
Metal roofs come in not only various colors but also a variety of appearances. Metal roofs often look like other materials. While standing ridge roofs are common, you can choose shake, shingles, slate, or classic Mediterranean tile.
Metal roofs are a popular choice in Northern Michigan. They tend to be better at shedding snow, leaves, and pine needles than traditional asphalt or fiberglass shingles.
Metal roofs are lighter in weight than many other materials. This means there is less total weight on your roofing trusses. This is beneficial considering Northern Michigan’s snowfall. But, of course, our homes are built to withstand heavy snow loads. Snow shields help prevent large sections of snow from falling like an avalanche and are strategically placed to protect walkways and doorways.
Metal roofs are also energy efficient and can help reduce heating and cooling costs. Another big plus in Northern Michigan!
Metal roofs do have a few downsides. They can be noisier in rainstorms, although insulation helps make this less noticeable. While their initial cost is higher, the long-term or total cost of ownership is often lower than other roofing choices.
Slate or Concrete Tile Roofing
Slate and concrete tile make for a gorgeous roof but are considerably heavier than metal or asphalt shingle roofing. This means that the extra reinforcement is necessary to accommodate the added weight of our Northern Michigan snowfalls. Durability is excellent, but costs tend to run higher than other choices.
Roof Care and Maintenance
No matter what material you choose, all roofs need care and maintenance. For example, cleaning gutters, removing tree branches or debris, and inspecting flashing should be done annually to prevent problems.
Factors that affect roofing material choices and longevity include:
- Roof pitch; steeper pitches tend to shed rain, snow, and debris, better prolonging the lifespan of the roofing material. Complicated pitches and gables can add to material and labor costs as well.
- Surrounding environmental factors include the amount of direct sunlight or shade and nearby trees that can shed leaves, pine needles, or other debris. Mold, moss, and algae can also affect your roof’s integrity.
- A well-designed roof includes proper insulation and ventilation to mitigate icicles and ice dams.
Lakeshore Custom Homes will consult with you and help you make an educated decision. We can guide you through many choices and help you choose the best options based on your home design, site selection, budget, and local factors. We are committed to providing the best quality construction so you can enjoy your custom home.
Please view our portfolio to see examples of some of the finest homes in Northern Michigan.
Are you ready to make your dream home a reality?
Contact us today to make an appointment to discuss your home-building plans. We’ll be with you every step of the way to guide you to the perfect home.