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What are the pros and cons of various roofing types?

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Understanding Different Roof Types: Pros, Cons, and Trends in 2024

In Australia, the roofing landscape is diverse, with several types of roofs commonly used across different regions due to varying climatic conditions and architectural styles. The types of roofs prevalent in Australia include:


Corrugated Metal Roofing

This iconic Australian roofing, known for its durability and resilience is a popular choice due to its cost-effectiveness and ability to withstand diverse weather conditions. It’s ability to withstand harsh weather conditions, coupled with low maintenance needs, makes it a preferred choice. 

  • Pros: Highly durable, weather-resistant, and suitable for Australia’s varied climate. Its lightweight nature makes it easy to install and ideal for areas prone to extreme weather conditions.
  • Cons: Can be noisy during rain and hail without adequate insulation.


Terracotta and Concrete Roof Tiles 

Terracotta tiles, with their natural cooling properties and long-lasting characteristics, offer an eco-friendly roofing option. Concrete tiles, on the other hand, are strong, versatile, and economical, providing a similar profile to terracotta tiles but at a more affordable cost.

  • Pros for Terracotta: Natural cooling properties, longevity, and eco-friendliness. Their aesthetic appeal is suited to both traditional and contemporary homes.
  • Pros for Concrete: Economical, durable, and offers a broad range of colours and styles.
  • Cons: Both types are heavier than metal options, requiring strong structural support, and may be more expensive to install.

Curved and Butterfly Roofs: Unique Aesthetics with Functional Benefits

Curved roofs provide a modern shape with efficient rain runoff, while butterfly roofs offer an architectural statement with natural light optimisation. Both these styles stand out for their unique design but come with higher construction and maintenance costs.


  • Pros for Curved Roof Aesthetic Appeal: Curved roofs provide a smooth, flowing appearance that can make a building stand out. Their unique form contributes significantly to the modern and dynamic look of a structure.
  • Cons for Curved RoofInsulation and Ventilation Challenges: The unique shape of curved roofs can pose challenges for insulation and ventilation, potentially requiring custom solutions to ensure adequate thermal performance and air circulation.
  • Pros for Butterfly Roof – Architectural Statement: Butterfly roofs are visually striking, making a bold architectural statement that can enhance the overall design of a building. They are often used in designs aiming for a high degree of aesthetic appeal.
  • Cons for Butterfly Roof – Higher Costs: The complexity of butterfly roof designs often results in higher construction costs, including materials, labour, and the potential need for custom fabrication or installation techniques.


Gambrel Roofs: Spacious and Timeless

Gambrel roofs, known for their spacious interiors, are relatively easier to construct and provide a distinctive style. However, they can be problematic in areas with high winds, requiring more maintenance.

  • Pros: Provides extra living space, suitable for attics or loft conversions. Their traditional design is often seen in rural or historical Australian homes.
  • Cons: Not as wind-resistant as other styles, which might be a consideration in certain parts of Australia.



Skillion Roofs

These are a variation of flat roofs with a noticeable pitch for water drainage. Skillion roofs are easier to maintain than flat roofs and offer advantages like the ease of installing solar panels and skylights.

  • Pros: Architectural Aesthetics: Skillion roofs provide a sleek and modern look that can complement contemporary home designs. Their angular appearance offers a minimalist and avant-garde aesthetic that stands out.
  • Cons: Heat Accumulation: Depending on the orientation and insulation, the large, uninterrupted surface area of a skillion roof can sometimes lead to heat accumulation, making efficient cooling a consideration, especially in warmer climates.



Colorbond Steel Roofing

A type of steel roofing coated with painted polyester, Colorbond roofing is highly durable and suits contemporary houses, especially those close to beaches or in regional areas.

  • Pros: Versatile, lightweight, and resistant to corrosion and fading. Available in a wide range of colours to suit any Australian home style, from traditional to modern. Excellent for the Sunshine Coast due to its resistance to salt corrosion.
  • Cons: While durable, it can dent with impact and may require repainting to maintain its appearance over time.



Flat Roofs

Common in apartment blocks and commercial buildings, flat roofs are economical and stylish but require more maintenance as they hold rain longer than sloped roofs.

  • Pros: Cost-Effectiveness: Flat roofs are generally less expensive to construct than sloped roofs due to their simpler design and the reduced amount of materials required. This can make them a more economical option for large commercial buildings and some residential applications.
  • Cons: Drainage Issues: The main drawback of flat roofs is their tendency to collect water, as they do not naturally facilitate water runoff as efficiently as sloped roofs. This can lead to pooling and potential leakage if not properly managed with adequate drainage systems.



Choosing the Right Roof for Your Home

Selecting the right roof type is a significant decision that affects not only the aesthetics of your home but also its functionality and maintenance requirements. Consider factors like climate, budget, and personal style preferences when making your choice. For expert guidance and quality roofing services, contact us for detailed information about roof replacements and repairs on the Sunshine Coast.

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