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What is the Cheapest Roof?

October 13, 2023 | 3 min. read

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Getting the news that you need a roof replacement can leave you frustrated. After all, roof replacements are costly and can derail your budget.

Buying a new roof includes a lot of decisions that can affect the end price – including roofing materials.

Rescue My Roof has been a leading educator in the roofing industry for over a decade. We’re here to discuss the burning questions other roofing companies don’t want to address – including roof prices.

In this article, we will cover the cheapest roofing material. Ultimately, you can make the best material decision for your budget.

What is the Cheapest Roofing Material?

Asphalt shingles are amongst the most popular roofing materials for a reason. They’re typically the cheapest, look great, and work in all weather conditions.

Because of their versatility and low price, you will find them on millions of homes across America.

Here’s what you need to know:

Asphalt Shingles

A close-up of a gray asphalt roof.

Asphalt shingles are the most commonly used roofing material in the United States, and for a good reason. They are affordable, durable, and come in a variety of colors and styles.

They are made from a combination of fiberglass and asphalt, which makes them resistant to fire and weathering. They also have a lifespan of around 15-30 years, depending on the quality of the shingle.

Three different types of asphalt shingles offer various price ranges and perks.

3-Tab Shingles

Gray 3-tab asphalt roof shingles

3-Tab shingles are designed to be deceptive. One shingle is 36 inches long, with three 12-inch sections (tabs). They look like three different shingles, but in reality, they are all one piece.

There are some benefits to 3-Tab Shingles, including:

  • More cost-effective than dimensional or luxury shingles
  • It provides a uniform look to your roof
  • One of the most common shingles

3-tab shingles are the most cost-effective, averaging $1-2 per square foot. They are also less labor-intensive, so you will not have to pay additional costs associated with additional time spent.

But, there are drawbacks. 3-tab shingles are more common in older homes. So if you want your home to have a more modern look, you may want to consider another option.

Dimensional Shingles

Dimensional asphalt shingles.

Dimensional shingles are asphalt shingles but with a bit of spice.

Dimensional shingles are growing in popularity because they look more luxurious than traditional asphalt but are still budget-friendly. Dimensional shingles cost  $5-35 per sq. ft.

These shingles are layered; the added thickness makes them look like a cedar shake shingle. If you like the look of cedar shake shingles like those pictured below but don’t like the added costs, these shingles may be for you.

Luxury Shingles

luxury asphalt shingle on a home

If you want a very high-end finish to your home, luxury shingles will add that incredible look of luxury.

What separates luxury shingles from others? They are bigger, bolder, and fancier. But you pay for that high-end finish. Luxury asphalt shingles are more expensive than dimensional shingles, costing 25-50 percent more than the average asphalt roof.

However, luxury asphalt shingles are cheaper than other roofing materials like metal, slate, or cedar shake.

Luxury shingles may be the right fit if you have an average budget but want a classic, clean look for your home.

How to Choose Which Asphalt Shingle Is Best For Me?

3-Tab, Dimensional, or Luxury- which one do I choose?

Considering the middle-range price, warranty, and modern look, dimensional shingles are among the most popular. But, there is a shingle for every type of buyer.

Strictly considering the budget? Traditional Asphalt shingles are your best bet. Redoing the roof on a home in a high-end neighborhood without a budget? Luxury shingles will give you that desired, polished, and expensive look. Want something budget-friendly but still adds modern curb appeal? Dimensional shingles are the way to go.

Choosing a particular product- especially when there are a billion different styles- can seem daunting. If we’ve done our job right, you now have a better understanding of the different types of shingles you can choose for your home.

But that isn’t the last decision you’ll have to make. Once the job begins, there are a few other key things you need to know. Read “10 Steps to Installing A New Roof and “How Long Will My Roof Replacement or Repair Take? Rescue My Roof specializes in asphalt roofing. Do you need a roof replacement or repair? We’ve got you covered. Contact us today to get a free estimate.