What are the Cheapest Roofing Materials?

If you’ve spent any time looking at roofing materials on the web, you’ll know that there’s a huge range for you to choose from. With a plethora of different designs, specialisations, and levels of performance, each type of material has its place. This can make it difficult to decide which is best for your project.

The ideal material for you depends on a number of things. Some homeowners will look for the strongest material available, while others consider ease of installation the most important factor. However, cost undoubtedly has a huge role to play in decision making. Whether you’re re-roofing a garage, conservatory, or shed – the most cost-effective products often catch consumers’ eyes.

Should Cost Be My Priority?

How important low cost is to you when buying roofing materials depends on your situation. If your budget is tight, then sourcing the cheapest materials may be the best thing for you. However, you should bear in mind that as a general rule, cheaper materials offer worse performance and shorter lifespans than more expensive options. The cost of any initial investment should always be balanced against the cost when future repairs or replacement are needed.

Which Roofing Material is the Cheapest?

As you can see, the cost of each type of material varies massively, and once you take lifespans into account, the option that is truly the cheapest might not be what you’d expect.

 

Material Product Cost per SqM House Roof Cost (100 SqM) Lifespan Cost per year
Concrete Tiles Redland Double Roman Concrete Roof Tiles £10.84 £1,084.00 60 years £18.07
Clay Tiles Redland Rosemary Clay Tiles £36.72 £3,672.00 60 years £61.20
Plastic Tiles Eco Slate Roof Tiles £36.89 £3,689.00 50 years £73.78
Slate Tiles Redland Cambrian Slates £39.69 £3,969.00 70 years £56.70
Metal Tiles Britmet Profile 49 Metal Roof Tiles £15.23 £1,523.00 40 years £38.08
Fibre Cement Tiles Cembrit Jutland Fibre Cement Slates £34.94 £3,494.00 60 years £58.23
Polycarbonate Sheets AXIOME Polycarbonate Sheets £16.00 £1,600.00 15 years £106.67
Metal Sheets Corotile Lightweight Metal Roof Sheets £18.98 £1,898.00 40 years £47.45
Fibre Cement Sheets Eternit Big 6 Fibre Cement Sheets £19.92 £1,992.00 70 years £28.46
Bitumen Sheets Coroline Bitumen Roofing Sheet £5.55 £555.00 15 years £37.00
PVC Sheets Corrapol PVC Roofing Sheets £10.43 £1,043.00 10 years £104.30
GRP Sheets Corrapol GRP Roofing Sheets £12.18 £1,218.00 30 years £40.60
Felt Shingles Coroshingle Felt Shingles £10.30 £1,030.00 15 years £68.67
Metal Shingles Britmet Lightweight Metal Roof Shingles £24.55 £2,455.00 50 years £49.10
Cedar Shingles Marley Western Red Cedar Wood Shingles £47.84 £4,784.00 50 years £95.68
GRP Flat Roof F1 GRP Fibreglass Roofing Kit £12.71 £1,271.00 25 years £50.84
EPDM Membranes Classic Bond Cut-to-Size EPDM Membrane £9.20 £920.00 50 years £18.40
Roofing Felt IKO Shed Roof Felt £1.30 £130.00 15 years £8.67

Conclusion

The cheapest material for a pitched roof per square metre is bitumen roofing sheets, but when you take lifespan into account, then concrete roof tiles give the most for your money. If you’ve got a flat roof, then roofing felt is undoubtedly the cheapest due to the very low initial investment, but when performance is considered, EPDM membranes are still a highly cost-effective choice.