Metal Roofing Cost & Buyers Guide (2022)

Here’s what we’ll cover in this buyers guide:

  • How much does metal roofing cost
  • Metal roofing cost factors
  • Types of metal roofing
  • Benefits of metal roofing
Ecowatch Author Kristina Zagame

By Kristina Zagame

Updated 9/19/2022

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Metal Roofing is increasingly popular

Metal has become an increasingly popular roofing material. Not only does it look sleek, it’s often more durable and longer lasting compared to asphalt shingles. However, that longevity often comes with a bigger price tag. Metal roofs also come with variability, painting you roof is often an easy option.

So, how much does a metal roof cost? Installation prices range from $5,000 to $50,000, but they depends on the type of metal roofing material and style that you choose. 

If you’d like to get connected with a roofing provider today for a free quote, click one of the providers below.

Best for New Roofs
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Erie Metal Roofs

  • Pros icon Lifetime or lengthy warranty
  • Pros icon Widespread availability
  • Pros icon 10+ years of experience
  • Pros icon Positive customer reviews
  • Pros icon Uses eco-friendly materials
  • Pros icon Financing options available
  • Pros icon Well-trained, certified installers
  • Pros icon Uses durable materials meant to last
  • Pros icon Variety of roofing styles available
  • Con icon Limited variety of roofing materials
  • Con icon Expensive
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Aspen Contracting

  • Pros icon Positive industry reputation
  • Pros icon Lifetime or lengthy warranty
  • Pros icon Widespread availability
  • Pros icon 10+ years of experience
  • Pros icon Positive customer reviews
  • Pros icon Financing options available
  • Con icon Little information available on company website
Best Overall
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Power Home

  • Pros icon Positive industry reputation
  • Pros icon Lifetime or lengthy warranty
  • Pros icon 10+ years of experience
  • Pros icon Positive customer reviews
  • Pros icon Uses eco-friendly materials
  • Pros icon Well-trained, certified installers
  • Pros icon Variety of roofing styles available
  • Con icon Limited variety of roofing materials
  • Con icon Short or nonexistent warranty
  • Con icon No financing information available
  • Con icon Expensive
  • Con icon Little information available on company website

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How Much Does Metal Roofing Cost?

The cost of a metal roof varies greatly depending on many factors including the size of your roof, roofing material, style and labor costs. 

Calculating for the national average roof size of 1,700 square feet, a new metal roof will cost between $15,500 on the low end and $67,500 on the high end.

While it’s a high upfront cost compared to asphalt shingles, you’ll save more money in the long run by investing in a metal roofing system. Metal roofs are:

  • Low maintenance
  • Highly durable, especially in areas with extreme weather
  • Long-lasting, with lifetimes anywhere from 40 to 100 years or more
  • Aesthetically pleasing

These key benefits mean you’ll spend far less on future maintenance, repairs and replacement installations.

Metal Roof Costs by Roof Type

Metal roofing is a broad term encompassing all roofing materials made from metals like aluminum, steel, tin, zinc and copper. There are also several different metal roofing options and styles for homeowners to choose from, including metal shingles, slate, tiles and standing seam. 

Metal roofs can often mimic the look of asphalt and wood shingles, making them a great choice for any style home.

There’s a large price range for residential roofing projects because it’s not just the cost of the material, but the labor costs you have to consider as well. Some metals may be heavier or harder to install, which will drive up the total cost for your project. 

Check out the chart below for a cost comparison of the common types of metal roofs.

Metal Roofing Material Material Cost per Square Foot Cost per Square
(100 sq. ft.)
Estimated Price Range
for 1,700-Square-Foot Roof Installation
Aluminum $3 to $9 $300 to $900 $9,000 to $28,000
Copper $11 to $25 $1,200 to $2,500 $30,000 to $70,000
Corrugated metal $3.50 to $6.50 $350 to $650 $10,500 to $19,500
Metal slate $5 to $12 $500 to $1,200 $12,000 to $25,000
Standing seam $8 to $14 $800 to $1,400 $24,000 to $42,000
Steel shingles $6 to $12 $600 to $1,200 $17,000 to $30,000
Tin $3 to $15 $300 to $1,500 $9,000 to $45,000
Zinc $6 to $11 $600 to $1,100 $15,000 to $50,000

Metal Roofing Cost Factors

Metal roofing prices are typically higher compared to asphalt shingle roofs, but you’re investing in a material that will last longer and is easier to maintain.

The total cost of metal roofing will vary depending on the metal material you choose, where you live, the scope of your roofing project and the labor involved. Let’s get into the specifics.

Labor and Installation Costs

It’s not as hard to install metal compared to many other roofing materials, as it’s surprisingly lightweight. Plus in some cases, you can install metal roofing panels right over your existing roof, even if it’s made of asphalt or wood shingles.

This means your roofer may not need as much time for installation, which could save you some money on labor costs. 

However, you will be charged if your old roof — including flashing and underlayment — needs to be removed. 

Permits

Roofing permits typically cost between $255 and $500 on their own, although the cost is usually roped into an initial building permit if you’re building a new structure. 

A roofing permit typically covers up to the first 1,000 square feet, but you may need to pay more for bigger roofs after that.

Many roofing companies will include the cost of the permit in your final roofing project estimate.

Your Location

The cost of roofing materials and labor varies greatly from place to place. It’s more than just general cost of living differences, though. 

For example, it may be more expensive to ship metal materials to your state versus another, and it may be harder to find a metal roofing contractor for the installation if metal roofs aren’t as common in your area.

Metal Roofing Material Used

As discussed throughout this article, the type of metal roofing material you choose will have a great impact on the price. Metal roofing material prices are based on the availability, durability and longevity of each material. 

For example, steel and aluminum roofing options are typically cheaper, while copper roofing may cost you double.

Roof Size, Slope and Pitch

It probably goes without saying, but the bigger your roof, the more your roofing project materials are going to cost. But square footage isn’t the only cost factor to consider.

A bigger, steeper roof will mean a longer and more tedious installation job for your roofers. You can expect to pay more if you have a roof with a steep slope or pitch.

Metal Roofing Style

A roofing contractor will likely consider the architectural style or design of your roof when calculating the total cost of your roofing project. Similar to roof slope and pitch, the style of your roof can make a big difference in the difficulty level of the installation.

Underlayment

Most homeowners concentrate on the exterior roofing materials, but you’ll have to pick materials for your underlayment, too, which will be an additional cost. 

The three main types of underlayment for metal roofs are felt, synthetic sheet and self-adhering membrane.

Types of Metal Roofing

We’ve mentioned the different costs associated with the various types of metal roofing materials, but there’s more than just numbers and appearance. 

Each type of roofing material has varying levels of energy efficiency and longevity, and some materials may be better suited for different climates.

Below we’ll walk through some of the most common types of metal roofing materials and explain how they compare to one another.

Aluminum Roof

Aluminum Roof costs
Courtesy: Trademark Roofing

Aluminum roofing is one of the more affordable metal roofing options available, as it’s abundant, recyclable and easy to work with. 

Aluminum comes in tile or shingle options and typically costs $3 to $9 per square foot with the average aluminum roof installation costing between $9,000 and $28,000. 

Aluminum is more resistant to leaks compared to corrugated metal. It also holds up against fire, storms, corrosion and saltwater damage, making it a great choice for any climate, but especially homes near the ocean. Aluminum roofs can last 40 or more years on average.

The appearance of aluminum is often its biggest downside compared to other metals. Aluminum roofs also don’t age as well as other materials and are known to dent, expand and contract more than other roofing metals, which can lead to creaking sounds and general wear and tear. Aluminum can also rust over time.

Copper Roof

Copper Roof costs
Courtesy: 1st Priority Roofing

Copper is a higher-end roofing material that can last 100 years or more, so it’s no surprise it comes with a higher price tag. Copper typically costs $11 to $25 per square foot of material, with average installation costs estimated between $30,000 to $70,000.

Copper roofs are lightweight yet durable and can give a home an elegant and expensive look. It’s also one of the more sustainable metal options because of its longevity, recyclability and energy efficiency. 

Copper will never corrode or rust like other metals and requires less maintenance because it develops a natural patina — a thin layer of protective covering.

Unfortunately, that patina is also what changes colors during the general oxidation process, from its beautiful gold-like color to more of a green (think of the Statue of Liberty). 

You can prolong this with regular cleaning and a protective coating, but it’ll likely happen at some point.

Corrugated Metal Roof

Corrugated Metal Roof
Courtesy: Trademark Roofing

Corrugated metal roofs typically come in thin sheets that have a wavy or rippled pattern. 

They’re one of the most affordable metal roofing options, comparable to asphalt shingles in price, averaging between $3.50 and $6.50 per square foot. That puts a full installation between $10,500 and $19,500.

While all metal roofs are strong, corrugated metal roofs are especially designed to hold up in harsh weather conditions and have an increased strength-to-weight ratio. These panels may be made of steel, aluminum or copper, with prices varying depending on which metal you choose.

The downside to corrugated metal panel roofs is that they’re more vulnerable to leaks and rust.

Metal Slate or Stone Coated Roof

Metal Slate or Stone Coated Roof costs
Courtesy: Erie Metal Roofs

Metal slate roofs — also called stone coated steel roofs — give the appearance of natural slate roof shingles without the heavy weight or the extremely high price tag. 

Stone coated metal roofing averages between $5 and $12 per square foot, compared to natural slate that typically costs between $15 to $30 per square foot.

Metal slate roofs have a much nicer appearance than other metal roofing options and look more like a traditional shingle roof, making them a good choice for any style of home.

While stone coated metal is eco-friendly and weather resistant, it doesn’t last as long as other metal roofing options, typically between 30 and 45 years. Still, that’s an improvement from standard asphalt shingles.

Standing Seam Metal Roof

Standing Seam Metal Roof cost
Courtesy: Classic Metal Roofing Systems

Standing seam is a type of roofing panel that comes in several different metal options, including aluminum, steel, copper and zinc. Depending on which material you choose, standing seam panels can run you between $8 to $14 on average, give or take a dollar on each end.

Standing seam is one of the most popular types of metal roofing materials because it’s widely available and offered by most metal roofing companies. Standing seam roofs have a vertical ribbed appearance, with fasteners concealed underneath the ribs to hold the panels together.

The unique locking system with a standing seam roof allows the panels to expand and contract as temperatures change. Because there aren’t any exposed fasteners, standing seam panels are better protected from weather stresses that can cause leaks and corrosion.

The biggest con with a standing seam roof is it’s a little expensive compared to other metal roofs, but its sleek design and life expectancy of between 30 and 50 years make it a worthwhile investment.

Steel Roof

Steel Roof cost
Courtesy: Heather and Little

As we’ve mentioned, a steel roof can come in many different styles, but for this section, we’re referring to steel shingles and tiles. A steel roof is more resistant to cracking, erosion and shrinking compared to other metals, expected to last between 40 and 70 years.

Steel roofing typically ranges from $3 to $12 per square foot, but it depends on the type of steel. For example, galvanized steel is coated with zinc for increased durability, while galvalume steel includes a mix of aluminum, zinc and a small amount of silicon. Both are relatively affordable options, ranging from $3 to $4.25 per square foot.

On the other hand, stainless steel roofing can come in as high as $10 to $16 per square foot. Stainless steel holds up best against the elements, but it’s also harder to work with, meaning you’ll probably incur higher labor costs during your installation.

Tin Roof

Tin Roof
Courtesy: 5 Estimates

Tin metal roofs are usually made up of a product called terne, which is rolled steel coated with tin alloy. Because they’re plated, tin roofs come in a variety of different colors and are a great middle-of-the-road choice, ranging from $3 to $15 per square foot of material depending on style.

Tin roofs are durable and resistant to cracking and harsh weather conditions, with an estimated lifespan around 40 years. They’re also a great choice for the eco-conscious homeowner, as tin is usually made from 30% to 60% recycled materials.

The downside to tin is that it will develop a gray patina over time due to oxidation, which may diminish the appearance of your tin roof.

Zinc Roof

Zinc Roof
Courtesy: Western States Metal Roofing

Zinc metal roofs are unique in their folding ability, giving them an attractive look. Zinc is considered a high-quality metal roofing material, which is why it comes with a higher price tag, ranging from $6 to $11 per square foot.

Zinc metal roofs are popular due to their distinct appearance, as well as their ability to hold up against harsh weather conditions. They will last at least 40 years but have been known to last 100 years or longer, making them one of the most durable roofing options in the market.

The recyclability and low toxicity levels of Zinc also make it a very eco-friendly option. It has a low melting point, so it requires less energy to manufacture compared to other metals as well. 

Zinc’s self-healing coating can cover scratches and scrapes, which contributes to its long, low-maintenance lifespan.

The only downside to zinc is that it can be difficult to install, leading to higher installation costs and roof issues if not installed properly.

Benefits of Metal Roofing

Metal roofs are most commonly installed on industrial or agricultural structures, but more and more homeowners are considering metal for residential roofing projects.

Here are some of the key benefits of metal roofing that can make it worth the extra cost:

Metal Roofs are Energy Efficiency

While metal roofing is more expensive compared to asphalt shingles, you can feel good about saving on cooling costs. 

Metal is reflective, so it directs the heat of the sun away from your home rather than absorbing it. Most experts estimate that you can save between 20% and 30% on cooling costs in the summer with a metal roof.

Environmentally Friendly

Energy efficiency isn’t the only environmentally friendly quality of metal roofs. Metal is easily recyclable and reusable and many metal roofs are made from recycled metals.

According to Sheffield Metals, metal roofing is 100% recyclable, meaning that old panels and metal scraps can be reupurposed for use in future metal products, such as appliances, cans or plumbing.

This recyclability applies to the most common metal roofing types: galvanized steel, aluminum, copper, zinc and stainless steel.

Additionally, metal is more durable and longer-lasting compared to other roofing materials, meaning you won’t have to replace your roof as often, which helps to keep roofing materials out of landfills.

Longer Roof Lifespan and Durability 

Speaking of longevity and durability, you can expect a longer average lifespan out of a metal roof. Metal roofs last 40 to 75 years on average, with some materials lasting up to 100 years or more. For context, a standard asphalt roof typically lasts 10 to 35 years.

When it comes to durability, some cheaper metal materials can become dented, but they’re still typically harder to damage compared to standard roofing materials. 

Each metal roofing material should come with a warranty that will be a good indicator of its longevity and durability, so be sure to ask your roofing contractor about that. 

Weather and Fire Resistance

Its durability makes metal roofing a good option for a lot of different climates, holding up well against of hail, high winds and storms. Additionally, metal is fire and smoke-resistant, making it a great option in areas prone to wildfires.

Tax Credits

Your metal roof installation may qualify you for a federal or local tax credit. Certain Energy Star certified metal roofs qualify for a federal tax credit for 10% of the cost of your installation, up to $500.1

Your state or local government may offer additional tax credits or rebates for energy-efficient metal roofing installations or upgrades.

Insurance Rate Reductions

The type of roof you choose can affect your homeowner’s insurance policy — for better or worse. Fortunately, metal roofs are known to lower homeowners’ insurance by up to 25% because they’re less likely to leak or suffer damage from the elements.

Improved Home Resale Value

Not only can metal roofs boost your curb appeal, but long-lasting, durable roofs are something prospective home buyers might pay more for — especially given they won’t have to worry about paying for roof replacement any time soon.

The Remodeling Report for 2019 found that a metal roof can increase home value by more than 60%.2

Metal Roof Maintenance

Metal roofs need less maintenance compared to many other roofing materials, but there are still things you’ll need to take care of to extend the life of your roof.

You’ll want to regularly clean your roof of debris. This can typically be done with a hose or pressure washer but stay away from abrasive tools that can scratch your metal roof. If scratches do occur, mineral spirits or touch-up paint can repair them. 

In general, you’ll want to leave roof cleaning to professionals.

Metal roofing pieces typically come with a roof coating made from zinc (galvanized) or a mixture of aluminum and zinc (galvalume). Each product varies in thickness but you’ll likely still have to recoat your metal roof at some point, no matter which product you choose.

Fortunately, it’s easy to recoat your roof with a polymer coating — like Kynar — to restore your metal roof to its original condition.

Additional Metal Roof Costs And Considerations

Aside from roof material and installation costs, there are a few other considerations that may affect the total cost of your roofing project and maintenance.

Metal Roof Painting or Coating

You can paint a metal roof to better match the aesthetic of your home, although it’s suggested not to paint it until six months after installation., That way, it has time to weather a bit. And as we discussed, metal roof coating can help repair scratches and improve the thickness and durability of the roof. 

Painting and coating a metal roof is also known to extend the roof’s lifespan and increase your energy efficiency, so it may be something you want to invest in.

Metal Roof Cleaning

Unless you have experience, we recommend leaving your metal roof cleaning to the professionals. Roofing companies typically charge between $0.20 and $0.70 per square foot to clean a metal roof and do so with a high-pressure washer.

Cost to Remove

The good news about a metal roof is that it can be installed right on top of most existing roofs. This can save you a lot of money in tear down costs. But if you need to have your roof deck or underlayment replaced or your shingles taken off, that’s going to be an extra charge from your roofer. 

Roof removals can add between $1,500 and $3,000 to your total metal roof installation cost.

Is a Metal Roof Worth It?

While metal roofs are almost always more expensive compared to asphalt roofs, they’re definitely worth the investment. Metal roofs are more durable and weather resistant, known to last up to three times longer than an asphalt roof. 

The longevity of your roof can save you thousands in the long run by avoiding reroofing or roof replacement costs.

Metal roofs are also far more sustainable than most roofing materials, as they are easily recyclable and often made from recycled materials. 

Homeowners will also find they save on energy costs with metal roofs because metal is more energy-efficient and a great insulator.

Finding the Right Metal Roofing Contractor

Hire a roofer

Metal can be a trickier roofing material to install, making it a job for professional and reputable roofing companies — you should never try to perform a DIY metal roof installation without experience. 

To find the best metal roofing company, you’ll first want to get a clear idea of which type of metal roofing you’ll want for your home. From there, you can meet with different roofing contractors who can provide you with estimates and help guide you through the decision process.

It’s best to find a company with a local office so you are able to meet in-person if need be. We also recommend finding a company that not only offers a lengthy material warranty, but also a workmanship warranty that protects you against a poor installation. 

Lastly, ask for referrals from former customers who have worked with this company so you can verify that people have had a good experience with their metal roof installation.

Click here to read our picks for best roofing companies

FAQ: Metal Roof Cost

Blog author image

Kristina Zagame

Kristina Zagame is a journalist and content writer with expertise in solar and other energy-related topics. Before joining EcoWatch, Kristina was a TV news reporter and producer, covering a wide variety of topics including West Coast wildfires and hurricane relief efforts. Kristina’s reporting has taken her all over the U.S., as well as to Puerto Rico and Chile.