Guesstimating the cost of installing a metal roof can be a trickier thing than it sounds. First off, the standard materials are going to cost different amounts in different places – it all depends on the cost of labor, the methods of distribution, freight costs and so on. Then there's the fact that with your typical contractor, they're lower the cost per square foot of installation the bigger your roof is. Indeed, if you intend to cut out the middleman and buy the raw materials straight from the manufacturer, you might want to try someone else that plans to re-roof and buy your metal roof shingles together at a wholesale price. The most popular brands like Met-Tile, Prestige, Decrabond, Gerard or Zappone are preferred as, while they may cost a little more, they offer the best warranties.
After your purchase ask the manufacturer who in your area is qualified to install that roof, and you'll be well on your way to a low-cost, high-quality installation. Never, ever go with a roofer who has not worked with the material before. The long term cost of having to re-do the job will easily outweigh any cash you may save by choosing less skilled labor, in addition to which the cost of installing a metal roof is generally low, as the shingles are so lightweight, and are often sold in pre-assembled sheets.
The cost of installing a metal roof will be significantly less the more regular the roof of your home is. Roofs with irregular features like strange angles, skylights, dormers, sidewalls and chimneys will probably require custom, on-site cutting panels, making them seriously prohibitive for any kind of home DIY-installation effort. Cutting by hand takes far too long for any but the most zen-like roofer to retain his sanity. Instead an expensive, portable machine called a brake is required, as is a professional trained in its operation.
While base metal roof prices are a little steep by comparison to fiberglass and asphalt roofs, if you plan to stay in your home, the cost will more than justify itself. Metal roofing is naturally flame retardant. Indeed, because of its noncombustible characteristics, many insurance companies offer discounts of up to 25 percent on policies for homes with metal roofs.
Aside from lowering your fire-hazard rating, the outlay of cash that the cost of installing a metal roof calls for will make for immediate savings on your electricity bills. When sealed, metal roofing panels can be pretty much airtight, keeping warm air from escaping your home in winter. In summer, on the other hand, the panels reflect sunlight rather than absorbing it the way asphalt shingles would, meaning that you will not have to run your air conditioning round the clock just to keep your home cool. Getting shingles with a plastic Kynar coating can enhance this reflective effect, making your home even more environmentally friendly.
There is also no roofing solution that can match a copper, aluminum or stainless steel roof for durability. Metal shingles are strong enough to stand up to hail without a dent, and many of them have withstood hurricane force winds without being dislodged. Furthermore, a simple Zinc-Aluminum coating can make metal shingles so resistant to corrosion that all that's required for their maintenance is the occasional hose-down. This is the reason that many companies offer warranties on their shingles of up to fifty years.