Roof extensions tend to be some of the most popular additions to build to a home. But not every roof extension is the exact same. In fact, there are two core fundamentally different designs offered by most contractors.
The choice between the two can dramatically alter the aesthetic of the home, as well as the function, costs, and even the value of the property. Deciding between a flat-roof extension and a pitched roof extension for your kitchen isn’t always easy.
Here, we are going to break down some of the most commonly cited pros and cons with each. We are also going to give you a general idea of how your choice of roof can impact the overall cost of the extension.
This article isn’t aiming to make your choice for you, just to inform you so you can make a decision you’re more likely to be happy with.
Pitched roof – Pros
The majority of roofs you see on both homes and extensions alike are pitched roofs. Many people prefer them because they want to add a roof extension that stays consistent with the rest of the home’s roofing.
Because of their sloping design, they are more versatile than a flat roof, too, with homeowners able to fit more beneath them. You may be able to fit attic space or even a second, smaller room just beneath the roof.
The sloping design also helps to improve their durability. With effective guttering attached, pitched roofs are able to redirect rainwater so that no puddles build and threaten to find a way to leak into your home.
In general, maintenance is much less of a concern with a pitched roof. Unless any tiles crack or break off due to force, they seal off the home effectively for longer. In terms of longevity, they are a clear winner over a flat roof extension.
Pitched roof – Cons
The initial cost of a pitched roof will be higher than that of a flat roof, on average, though we are going to take a closer look at the real cost, short-term and long-term, a little later.
Pitched roofs also tend to take longer to complete because the slope requires a little extra effort to build. They are a more complex design, as well as requiring more labour and materials to build than a flat roof.
Flat Roof – Pros
Perhaps the greatest advantage of choosing a flat roof for your home is the ease and speed with which they can be built. Flat roof extensions are comparatively simple in contrast to pitched roofs, so you don’t have a long waiting period for the project to be complete.
Although they don’t have the same degree of natural slope as a pitched roof, flat roofs are still somewhat tilted as to allow rainwater to collect in the drainage system effectively.
Flat roof extensions also tend to be a more suitable option for more compact extensions and smaller buildings. You may find them perfect for a garage or any extension where a pitched roof might not have the space to fit easily on the side of the building.
If you want to build an eco-friendly green roof, flat roofs might be more suitable for that, too.
Flat Roof – Cons
If you do choose to install a flat roof extension, then you need to be prepared for the work that comes along with them. Flat roofs tend to require more work on a more regular basis than the pitched alternative.
You can choose some newer materials like EPDM and hot rubber to extend the longevity of a pitched roof for up to 30 years, but this will require a slightly bigger budget as well as highly-experienced contractors.
While flat roofs do have some drainage capabilities on their own, it is much reduced compared to the sloping effect of a pitched roof. This means that if you live in an area with heavy rainfall, flat roofs might not be entirely compatible with your needs and this could lead to puddles gathering and leaks into the home.
Extra drainage solutions can be built onto a pitched roof, but again, this will impact the cost.
The question of cost
When looking at cost, it’s best to take both the short-term and long-term view. In the short-term, pitched roofs tend to be more expensive than flat roofs. They require more labour, more materials, and more time to build.
Then again, the difference in budget can close if you decide to add a dedicated drainage solution and use a high-cost material like hot rubber for your flat roof.
In terms of long-term cost, unless you do invest in the extras mentioned, flat roofs will require maintenance, repairs, and replacements more often than a pitched roof.
There is some concern, as well, that flat roofs can take away from the value of the home if they are not planned well.
Some don’t find them as aesthetically appealing as pitched roofs and they don’t add as much space.
Accounting for taste
Both kinds of roofs have their own aesthetic appeal. While pitched roofs have a traditional design to them, the compact, contemporary look of the flat roof does have its own fans, as well. But you don’t have to account for just your own tastes.
If you live in an area with a homeowner’s association, they may have some clauses that limit what kind of roof you can build, so it’s best to check with them before you commit to a decision, too.
Hopefully, the points above give you a little more insight on the two options available. Homeowners can be perfectly happy with either a flat roof or pitched roof extension, you just need to know what you want from your roof.
Regardless of which you choose, if you live in Kent or the surroundings, you need an effective team of qualified professionals to help you build it.
Otherwise, why not take a look through our blog for other ideas of how to improve and expand the home.