The first thing homeowners think about when it’s time for a roof replacement is, “How much is it going to cost?”. The truth is, your roof replacement is going to be an investment no matter what roofing material you choose.  

If your budget is tight, then you’re probably looking for the “cheapest” option available. But what is the lowest-priced roofing material for a roof replacement?

At Bill Ragan Roofing, our goal is to give you and every other homeowner the power to make the right purchasing decisions on your own. We take the time to advise and educate clients on every aspect of their roof replacement.

That’s why we’re going to break down the “cheapest” option for your new roof. By the end of this article, you’ll learn the cheapest roofing material and some things to consider to determine if it’s the right type of roof for you. 

The cheapest roofing material for your roof replacement

If you’re on a tight budget, asphalt shingles are going to be the most cost-effective roofing material for your upcoming roof replacement.  

what's the cheapest roofing material

While asphalt is the cheapest roofing material, there are 3 different types of asphalt shingles that vary in price and affect how much you’ll spend on your roof replacement. 

3-tab shingles are the cheapest of the 3 types of asphalt shingles and are a great option for a tight budget. But they’re slowly starting to be phased out of the roofing industry. 

Dimensional asphalt shingles are the most common type you see on roofs today. They cost about 15% more than 3-tab shingles, but give you more life and better warranty options. 

Luxury asphalt shingles are the most expensive option of the 3 types. They’re going to be almost double the cost of dimensional shingles, but they’re one of the most aesthetically pleasing roofs you’ll see. 

But if you're looking for the most cost-effective roofing material, you’re probably going to go with a 3-tab or dimensional shingle for your asphalt roof replacement.

3 more things to consider when deciding which asphalt shingle is right for you

Now you know that asphalt is the cheapest roofing material for your roof replacement. You also just learned which asphalt shingle is right for someone on a tight budget. 

While cost is the main thing every homeowner thinks about, there are a few more things to consider when deciding which asphalt shingle is right for your roof replacement. 

1. How long the 3 types of asphalt shingles last

The lifespan of your roof is how many years you’ll get out of it. Because a new asphalt roof is always going to be an investment, you’re expecting to get the most out of it. 

That’s why you need to consider how much life you’ll get out of each of the asphalt shingles. 

3-tab shingles have a lifespan of 25 years and have the shortest lifespan of the three types of asphalt shingles. Dimensional and luxury shingles both have a lifespan of 30 years, but the luxury style has the possibility to go over 30 years and up to 50 under the right conditions.

As long as the asphalt shingles are properly installed and your attic is adequately ventilated, they’re all going to get as close as possible to their manufacturer’s specified lifespan. But how can you ensure your asphalt roof will reach its full potential?

To learn how to maximize your roof investment, read this article on the 4 ways to get the most out of your asphalt roof replacement

2. The look each asphalt shingle gives your roof

When meeting with your local roofing contractor, you’ll have to choose the color and look you want your roof to have. That’s why you need to determine how important the look of your new asphalt roof is to you. 

If you don’t care about the look of your new roof, 3-tab shingles may be right for you. While 3-tab shingles still make good-looking roofs, dimensional and luxury shingles mimic other roof types to give you a distinct look. 

If you want the cedar shake roof look without paying the cedar shake price, a dimensional asphalt shingle is the one for you. Luxury shingles give you a beautiful slate look, but it comes at a premium price. 

All 3 types of asphalt shingles make good-looking roofs. But if you want your roof to really stand out, consider going with dimensional or luxury asphalt shingles.

3. Your warranty options for the asphalt shingle you choose

All 3 types of asphalt shingles come with warranties from the manufacturer out of the package. This material warranty is crucial to protect your roof investment if there’s ever a problem with the shingles themselves. 

When deciding which asphalt shingle is right for your roof replacement, you need to know the warranty options. The only material warranty for a 3-tab shingle roof is a 25-year warranty from the manufacturer. 

Both dimensional and luxury shingles come out of the package with a 30-year prorated warranty from the manufacturer. However, you do have the opportunity to get the 50-year non-prorated enhanced warranty for both of them. 

To get the enhanced warranty, all of your asphalt roofing components (including your asphalt shingles) have to come from one specific manufacturer to form a complete roof system. After your new asphalt shingle roof is installed, this warranty ensures the manufacturer covers all of your roofing materials.

Be aware, improper roof installation and inadequate attic ventilation will void the enhanced warranty. That’s why it’s crucial to hire a high-quality roofing contractor for your asphalt roof replacement. 

The risks of trying to get the cheapest roof replacement possible

Now you know what to consider when deciding which asphalt shingle is right for you. Even though the price of your new roof is always the biggest concern, you should always consider what you get out of your investment with the look, lifespan, and warranties that protect it. 

While it’s alright to look for the most affordable roofing material, it’s crucial not to look for the cheapest roof replacement possible. This leads to stress, cutting corners during installation, and taking more money out of your pocket. 

A cheap roof replacement might be tempting, but there are huge risks involved. Because we want every homeowner to avoid the problems that come with a “cheap” roof, we’re going to give you the 4 risks of getting the cheapest roof replacement possible. 

The team at Bill Ragan Roofing has proudly helped homeowners in the Nashville area get a high-quality roof that fits their budget. We take the time to help you understand what goes into the cost of your new roof and why it’s important. And if you end up working with us, we’re proud to provide you with a lifetime warranty, so we can be there for you if there’s ever a problem. 

To learn the problems that come with a cheap roof, check out this article on 4 Risks of Trying to Find the Cheapest Price for Your Roof Replacement.

the complete guide to purchasing a roof