Deciding between asphalt shingles or metal for the roof is something that so many homeowners here in the Minneapolis area are now doing. Residential metal roofing is fast becoming the #1 roofing option, but because it's a relatively new thing for many people, we find that those we talk to have lots of questions as to how it compares to traditional asphalt shingles. 

There are many pros and cons to each, and depending on what exactly you’re looking for, we can help you can find the best roofing material to work with.

Durability is one of the biggest issues when selecting roofing, as well as the way that the roof is going to look on your home. Of course, ultimately you want to be get a roof with the long-lasting protection that is needed.

Comparing Asphalt and Metal Roofing

Style of Roof

There are other types of roofing, but asphalt shingles remain the most common type in the US. When you see a home that you’re driving by, chances are they have a nice asphalt shingle roof on it.  Asphalt shingles have very little variation in style, but there are lots of colors available.

Like asphalt, metal roofing comes in a wide variety of colors.  But metal roofing has an advantage that asphalt shingle roofing doesn't:  style. Metal roofing comes designs that replicate asphalt shingles as well as slate, tile, wood shake, and more.  If getting something a little different in appearance from the homes around you matters, metal roofing wins out over asphalt shingle roofing.


For most Twin Cities homeowners, price is a major factor when they're evaluating materials for a new roof.  If your top consideration is something that is more affordable up front, asphalt shingles win. Metal roofing is more expensive initially.  However, over time the real cost will be at least two and sometimes three times more than asphalt, perhaps even more. 

Asphalt roofs periodically need more repairs (sometimes costly) than metal roofing due to harsh weather and other factors that aren't always covered by homeowner's insurance.  If you're looking for the total cost of a roof over its lifetime, metal roofing will usually be the best choice.

And then there's the issue of as possible discount on your homeowner's insurance.  You won't get that with asphalt roofing, but many insurance companies will do so for metal roofing because it's so resistant to storm damage as well as fire.

Life Expectancy

The most a homeowner in Minnesota can expect out of an asphalt roof is 20 years. But problems will start happening before then. A metal roof can be expected to last at least that long, probably longer.  (In Europe there are metal roofs that are centuries old.)  Metal roofing does cost a bit more upfront but it is going to last a lot longer than shingle roofing. If you want something that is good for almost a lifetime, then metal roofing is definitely the way to go.

Return on Investment

Metal roofing comes with a high return on investment. You might spend a decent amount up front, but you can expect to recoup most of that money, even after years of it doing its job protecting your home.  A brand new asphalt roof might net you a slight return if you're selling your house soon after having it installed, but over time you really won't see any increase in value. In fact, as an asphalt roof deteriorates, it could actually reduce the value of your home because a buyer is going to want an allowance for a roof replacement.

Metal roofing is usually the way to go if you want something that is going to last for some time. While shingles are a cost-effective way up front to get a roof put on your home, the other benefits all point to a metal roof.

If you’re ready to make the switch to metal roofing, give us a call here and we would be more than happy to speak with you about the roofing options you have and which might be most ideal for your home here in the Minneapolis area. 

Quarve Contracting, Inc. is a licensed Minnesota roofing contractor, and we specialize in metal roofing.