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06.14.11 / Act of God?

A severe hail storm hit the Underdog’s neighborhood a few weeks ago.  We weren’t there at the time, but apparently there was tennis ball-sized hail crashing down for a good 10-15 minutes. Since our Underdog is far from perfect, we didn’t worry about it too much.  {I’d be lying if I didn’t tell you that images of busted out windows and a leaking roof did pop into my head.}  We had the house inspected by a professional back when we put in our offer and he determined that the current roof had a few small leaks and about 2-5 years of life left in it.  We plan on popping in some skylights over the future kitchen, so we started looking at roofing options early on because we figured the skylight installation would be a good time to go ahead and have a new roof put on too. We’re very interested in a metal roof for its eco-friendliness and durability.  We were happy to find a local roofing company that’s done quite a bit of commercial metal roof work and is looking to take on the residential market.  After meeting with them, getting an estimate and asking a lot of questions – not to mention doing all the same with a few other companies – we decided we’d go with them for our roof install whenever we got around to that project.  {We like to research and make decisions in advance before we get around to actually carrying out the project.}

Fast forward one month to the hail storm that pelted our new neighborhood.  Like I said, we weren’t present when the storm occurred but neighbors said it was pretty awful.  When the storm was over the ground was covered in ice balls {that’s how I describe hail to Layne} and cars and houses were left damaged.  In fact, our next door neighbors put in a claim to their insurance company for damage to their roof and were fully compensated after a roof inspection.  Handy Hubby talked with the homeowner and was surprised to discover that even though his roof wasn’t leaking, the insurance company still deemed the roof needy of replacement and wrote him a check. Apparently homes with lower pitched roofs {as is the case with most ranches} suffer more from hail detriment than homes with higher pitched roofs.  Which makes sense. The lower pitch allows for more direct impact on the roof when wind isn’t playing a role.

Older shingles are less resilient to hail damage because they are more brittle. Problems arise when asphalt shingles suffer severe granule loss and material removal at the edges.  Leaks may not appear immediately but those conditions will definitely set you up for problems in the future if they’re not addressed properly.  That means our Underdog had two factors working against it during the hail storm:  low roof pitch and older shingles.  So even though we had budgeted for a new roof, Handy Hubby called up our insurance agent to file a claim for hail damage.  Last Friday the adjuster came out to the house and wasn’t on the roof 5 minutes before she told Handy Hubby that we’d indeed be needing a new roof due to the damage.  That’s right.  We’re getting a check to have our roof replaced.  Coincidence?  Act of god?  The calm before the storm?  Good luck? Proof that Handy Hubby may have batted an eye or two at the female insurance adjuster? …which I’m totally cool with given the results.  An omen that we’re making the right decision to sell our current home and take on the unbelievable task of undertaking the Underdog?  I don’t know. Whatever it is, I’m okay with it.  Grateful for it even.  Of course, the amount of the check is for a traditional asphalt roof.  We want a metal one.  We’re happy to pay the difference.  If all goes as planned, we’ll be shelling out $1,500-$2,000 for a new metal roof in the near future.  Not too bad considering the quotes we got for metal roofing ranged from $9,500 all the way up to $16,000.

And so I leave you with images of rockin’ metal roofs.

Do any of you have experience with metal roofs and want to put your two cents in?  Or maybe you’ve filed an insurance claim due to a storm recently?  Share!

images:  1) Terra Daily 2) Dana Miller for House*Tweaking  3) ATR Exteriors 4) LGC Roofing 5) Pana Roofing 6) Luxury Housing Trends 7) North Carolina Metal Roofing 8) Roofing-PRO LLC 9) Contemporist

51 Comments

I have mixed feelings. I like a lot of the aspects of a metal roof, but it’s lacking in the charm department for me. That being said, the house we moved into 2 yrs ago has a new metal roof, and I do love listening to the rain bounce off the metal. However, I would make sure to have your gutters adjusted and watch for any spots where the rain shoots right past them and add those little metal “v” catches for snow. Our gutters were never adjusted and the rain shoots right over them because the angle is slightly different, and we had some damage from freeze/thaw to our front patio area because of it. I wish I had known that update hadn’t been done before I spent my first winter here! Congrats on the new roof, though — serendipity!

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replied on June 14th, 2011

Anna – Thanks for the tip on the gutters! Our roof installation estimate actually includes the installation of all new, larger gutters to accommodate the metal roof. I’ll have to ask Handy Hubby about the ‘v’ catches you mentioned. I also love the texture that a dimensional asphalt shingle roof adds to a home’s exterior…especially for homes with vinyl or wood siding as they can come across as blah and flat without some added texture. Since the Underdog’s exterior has a nice, textured brick facade we like the idea of adding a slick, modern element to it. We’re fans of mixing rustic and vintage with industrial and modern. But mostly, we like the green properties that a metal roof will provide. Any new roof would be an improvement over what we have going on now!

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14.June.2011

When you get the metal roof, please post about how you like it. We are planning on building a new home in the next 12-18 months and I want a metal roof, even though one architect tried to talk me out of it.

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14.June.2011

Metal roofs are very popular in Australia, most commonly the Colorbond brand – http://www.colorbond.com/
I have a colorbond roof on my house, and it’s fantastic. I don’t have to worry about tiles slipping or cracking and is essentially maintenance free. I agree with Anna, the sound of rain on the roof is lovely.
An interesting point for me is that the profile on the American roofs is different to the Aussie ones. We use your profile on warehouses & industrial buildings, whereas we use a smaller wave profile on residential buildings. Maybe your profile works better with snow?

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14.June.2011

Those v catches are very important for metal houses in our area of Western New York. The house that my sister rents doesn’t have them and the icicles and build up are horrible! I think they are called snow guards, you can google them and see good pictures and demonstrations.

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14.June.2011

whoa, that’s some serious hail! in the rural area where i grew up, having a metal roof was very common. those snow guards are a must, for sure!

we had our roof and siding replaced after a hail storm in Columbus a while back. We didn’t see any damage right away, but there was a lot of debris in the gutters, and some dents in the aluminum siding. The hail damage was so prevalent in our area, the insurance rates went up whether or not you made a claim, so we finally had someone out. At the time, we knew we were planning on moving in the next 5 years (and we did!), so we did not make the investment in a metal roof, but from what I’ve read, it does make a lot of sense for a lot of different reasons.

are you thinking of going with a light colour?

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replied on June 14th, 2011

Carole, Tamisha & Chrissy – We’re leaning towards a darker color…charcoal, dark bronze or black. The current roof is a light gray and I don’t think it looks all that great. We’ve thought about liming {white-washing} the brick maybe a few years from now so we want to make sure whatever color we choose will look nice with the original or limed brick since a metal roof has ~50 year lifespan.

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14.June.2011

What color are you thinking? I have never had a metal roof, so can’t offer any suggestions, but the examples you show look stunning and I think it will look great on the Underdog. Given the hail, are you worried at all about dents and dings? And I think the snow catchers are called snow birds. I need to get some installed on my very steeply pitched slate roof. When the snow slide off, it’s enough to kill someone!

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14.June.2011

Yep, we had a hail storm in Oct. of 2010 and got a big check to put a new roof on our 4 year old house. Since our house is still fairly new, we repaired the damage ourselves and we’re saving the rest of the check to put a new roof on in a few years. I’d love a metal roof too. We live in the mountains and the snow guards are very important. Are you getting the kind with exposed screws or with concealed? We’ve heard you are suppose to replace the gaskets under the exposed screws every 5 years or so to prevent leaks, but all the people we know with the exposed screws haven’t done that. Plus, the exposed screw metal roofing is cheaper than the concealed. What color are you thinking of going with?

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14.June.2011

I love metal roofs…would love to put one on a house someday. Not to be a downer but have you talked to your insurance broker about what your rates are going to be after this claim? Not sure if things are the same but here in Canada our rates skyrocket for at least the next 3 years after a claim. We lost our home to a tornado last year and will be paying HUGE rates for the next few years on our new place. If it’s a similar situation for you, the cost of your new premiums might not be worth making the claim.

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14.June.2011

The husband and I got that same storm but the hail at our house was smaller than a ping pong ball. We were astounded to hear about all of the damage in the surrounding neighborhoods. I’d say you guys are exactly where you’re supposed to be and ended up with the right house for you!

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14.June.2011

I had a roofer come to look at a roof I wanted to replace, and after he gave me his price (which was way higher than I’d expected), he said, “Or you could pray for hail!”. Well, before I had a chance to do anything else with the roof, we did get a hail storm, and I got a check for a new roof! Thank you, Lord!

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14.June.2011

That is some serious hail there!! Great news about the insurance check and the metal roof:) That’s exactly how we ended up with 10′ ceilings instead of 8′.

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14.June.2011

My mom’s house used to have a metal roof and man, that thing was LOUD. Maybe it was just our roof (which was also low pitched), but when it rained hard you could hardly hear yourself thinking. Forget hail. That was years ago, so maybe they’ve improved things since then though.

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14.June.2011

I hate to say it, but I too am hoping for some light hail damage to our roof this summer that will warrant a new roof! Ours will need to be replaced in 2 ish years. Is a metal roof noisy?

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replied on June 14th, 2011

April – Believe it or not, I lived in a barn {that’s a whole ‘nother blog post!} with a metal roof for over a decade as a child. The barn was built when I was 4 years old and that metal roof is still looking great after nearly 30 years. Back then, the roof was loud during rain storms but I loved it. No one in my family grew up being scared of storms, thunder or lightning. I think the sound of rain on metal sounds lovely but that’s just me. Anyhow, metal roofs have come a long way since then and are much quieter. I’d still like to hear a little pinging up there though!

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14.June.2011

What a great coincidence on your roof! We had similar sized hail this year in MN. Our house was fine, my car was not :(

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14.June.2011

Wow! That hail is crazy. I live in the Cinci area too and we also had some hail this weekend but the largest pieces we saw were about golfball size. I don’t think it damaged our roof, just the hood of our car and ruined our garden :( No insurance claims for holes in summer squash and tomato plants unfortunately.

Love the metal roof photos! I think it will really modernize your ranch and look fantastic.

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14.June.2011

Just another reason why getting home insurance early is extremely wise!

Sounds like your good fortune came at a good time! And I am extremely excited to see your metal roof come to fruition. Looking at the photos you posted, I think the metal really compliments the ranch-style homes, more so than the large-scale contractor homes (though, those are certainly pretty too!).

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14.June.2011

I’m getting a new roof due to hail damage, too! There was a scary hail storm at the end of April, but I didn’t have any leaks or major damage. But my co-workers kept telling me to call my insurance agency and have someone come out to check. Sure enough, my super-old roof is now getting replaced for the very small cost of my deductible:) I’m so thankful I can spend that money on other fun stuff now!

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14.June.2011

I’d love a metal roof! Up here in NH it’s almost a necessity. We have an asphalt roof and get some serous glaciers up there. And if those v things are what I think they are they are very helpful in breaking up the snow so it doesn’t fall off in huge sheets.

BTW I have a friend who swears by feeding the roofers. It won’t make a difference with a good crew but it can make a mediocre crew more attentive. Especially during clean-up. Plus it’s just a nice thing to do. Also, don’t do any expensive landscaping close to the house before you get the new roof. Our roofers accidentally killed 2 azalea bushes and we had to be reimbursed.

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replied on June 14th, 2011

Jenn – Thanks for suggesting to hold off on landscaping. Luckily, we’re quite a ways out from doing any landscaping. The roof definitely takes priority.

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replied on June 14th, 2011

Jenn – Note to self: MAKE SANDWICHES AND LEMONADE FOR THE ROOFERS. Got it. I always try to offer drinks, food or snacks to anyone we have come work on our home…now and in the past. Even if it doesn’t make them work any harder, I want them to know I appreciate their time.

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14.June.2011

What a happy coincidence! Glad there was not more damage than that, to your place or the neighbors. For some reason I always feel a certain vindication when I actually receive money from the insurance company. ;)
I worked for a General Contractor for years that specialized in Green Building and am excited to see all the green elements you will bring to the Underdog! Metal roofs are great, we are in a pretty high fire zone and they are a great alternative to traditional roofing for fire protection also. When you have your new gutters installed you should have them set up a couple rain barrels so you can harvest that water for your landscaping!

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replied on June 14th, 2011

Jen – I think tying the gutters into a few rain barrels is an awesome idea!

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14.June.2011

A few years ago a friend of ours was working on a roof across the street. He wandered over to tell us he was replacing it due to hail damage (there hadn’t been any storms recently) and that the insurance company was paying for it. He suggested we have ours inspected too, an adjuster came out to inspect it and sure enough we had previous hail damage. We had lived there almost 5 years! They paid to replace the roof. That was a nice perk for all of the money you pay in and never see back.

I like the “green” aspect of the metal roof. Black would be amazing. I wish our roof was different. We bought an underdog ourselves last summer and while the brick on the house is brown, the asphalt shingles are that light gray. Not a good combo. So now we’re praying for hail too! :)

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I’m so excited that you are planning to do a metal roof because my husband and I are planning the exact same thing. Our roof is really, really old and has 3 layers of shingles. The inspector said that while it is in decent condition for being so old, we probably only have 2 years or so of life left in it. And with 3 layers of shingles, we are going to have to do a complete tear off when the time comes to replace it. So, a metal roof is what we’re looking at to make the roof energy effecient and have greater longevity. Plus the look fits our bungalow style brick house.

I’m excited to see your process in picking out the exact style and color and what you think about it once implemented! Good Luck! :)

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replied on June 14th, 2011

Katie – The Underdog has 2 layers of shingles so it will get a complete tear too.

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14.June.2011

Wow, very cool, had no idea metal roofs existed until we bought our house here in Florida. Our whole neighborhood has metal roofs, we get some crazy storms(live at the beach and next to a bay~ cra-zay wind and electrical storms) but the roof has been brilliant through it all. It’s not that noisy either. :)

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14.June.2011

I really like the way metal roofs look and I’ve heard they are much more durable. Can’t wait for photos! However, I would suggest checking with your local City building department to make sure that they allow metal roofs and to see if there are any extra requirements.

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replied on June 14th, 2011

Jen – We’ll definitely check with the city/county before implementing a metal roof. Thanks!

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14.June.2011

Wow, that worked out great! When we have to get a roof (hopefully not for a while), we want to check into metal roofs. I LOVE the look of them. Can’t wait to see it!

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I actually really like the look of the metal roofs – It will be interesting to see what color you guys decide to go with and what the final product will be. Do you think it will be loud when it rains on the metal?

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14.June.2011

Hooray! Glad you guys got the good end of the hail storm! This just happened to my boss too — can’t complain about replacing a 10k roof for free!

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14.June.2011

In the midst of replacing my roof (old – shingle w/new – shingle) after a hail storm in Oct. I live in the SW so it’s typically tile (terra cotta) or shingle. Our new shingle roof quotes are as much as the metal ones you quoted, I don’t have a large home (many peaks though). Wowza, what a difference location makes.

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14.June.2011

I’m sure you will research the roofers you choose, but just be careful. After big storms like that, you may see a lot of advertising for roofers who are just looking for insurance money. My parents had the same thing happen to them…rancher, hail, insurance, and the new roof they got ended up being a not-so-great job and the roofers disappeared off the face of the earth. Like I said, I’m sure you’ll do your research especially since you’re getting an upgraded roof, but warn the neighbors!

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14.June.2011

My parents have had a metal roof for at least 10 years. My dad installed it with some help (my dad is extremely handy, like mechanic/welder/electrician/plumber/carpenter handy). It’s been through several hailstorms and under the hot Texas sun yet it still looks new.

I think it’s important to pick a color that will flatter the house, rather then stand out and distract from the bones of the house.

Good luck!

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14.June.2011

HAHAHAHA! You sound like me! We needed new floors REALLY badly but couldn’t afford it so while on my way to Lowes to pick up paint samples, I was changing something in the house, I got a call that the house was flooded. My poor husband was freaking out and I told him to keep the water on and let it flood longer! Tragically he didn’t but you wouldn’t expect someone to be so excited to have their house flooded!

Congrats! It’s such an exciting thing!

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14.June.2011

We lived in the mountains of Colorado for many years where a metal roof is a necessity, but I agree it must be done correctly, i.e. the catches. They need to know what they are doing! The one downside is the potential for the color to fade over time. Colorado gets alot of intense sun, so maybe it would be different elsewhere, but you did see the attractive colors fade over time.

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14.June.2011

Hi Dana! The house we are moving into has a metal roof. It is nice in the fact that the MN wind doesn’t rip all the shingles off and therefore has little maintenence. Make sure you pick a color you like, ours is a faded mauve (Hector calls it tan, which it definetely is not!) and since I want to completely redo the siding it is hard to find a color with a light roof, You shouldn’t have that prob with brick. The metal roof can cause some increase in noise and decrease in cell reception. Hector reccommends investigating something prevent the snow from sliding off the roof all at once like an avalanche, especially over door ways. He also reccommends having gutters slightly lower so the snow avalanche doesn’t damage them. THe house we are moving to is his parent’s old farmhouse and has had the metal roof about 12 years. Hope that helps, good luck!

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replied on June 14th, 2011

Heidi – Congrats on your new/old house! Thanks for all the helpful info on metal roofing. {Thank you, Hector!} I hadn’t heard that it would affect cell phone reception. I’ll have to make sure Handy Hubby knows about the snow guard thingies and possibly lowering the gutters. We miss you guys! Give all those kiddos hugs from us. Hope your moving adventure goes well! xo

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15.June.2011

We had nearly the same situation. We’ve been exploring options for replacing our aging roof. The Arkansas storms this spring made our roof “spring” a waterfall in the spare bedroom. After consulting with our roofer, we called the insurance agent and we were covered! The nice thing (if hail damage could be said to be nice) is that hail damage is covered 100% (minus deductible) regardless of age of roof. If it was Storm damage then the insurance would pro rate compensation based on age of the roof. The roofing company took the insurance payment as payment in full and upgraded our shingle grade. They were wonderful and got it done very quickly – before the next rain storm. We were giddy with relief that we had a new roof! Who says the basic stuff like roofs and plumbing don’t make us happy.

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That is some crazy hail!!! We had a hail storm about 3 years ago in NY, about quarter to half dollar size and it did damage to our roofing material on our enclosed deck. We didn’t put a claim in, but we did have the roofing material replaced. That hail went right through our roofing material {which is a plastic material}. But the roofing at been there for at least 10-15 years, so I guess it would have been damaged sooner or later.

Anyway, I love your choice of roofing material. And those eye candy pictures are just gorgeous. Wish we had done a metal roof. I can’t wait to see it on your home. I think that Mother Nature was sort of on your side for this project. ;-) It’s a win win in my book. Every little penny counts when you are trying to remodel a home, so good for you guys. :-)

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15.June.2011

We have a metal roof. It’s good & it’s bad. The northeast got slammed with snow this past winter.
Pros: we didn’t need a “roof rake” like everyone else, doesn’t need to be replaced for a really long time.
Cons: when snow accumulated, it sounded like thunder, the whole house shook, and an avalanche of snow (and heavy, sharp ice) would drop off the house (not fun over the front door or garage doors)

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15.June.2011

We had an amazing little rental house in NC before we bought our place in SoCal. We lived there for 4 years and embraced every thunderstorm and rain drop. Though exceedingly loud, we loved every second of it. Just something really romantic about it all. Also, during the Fall the acorns hit the roof HARD. Sounded like we were under attack and even woke up bolt upright in the middle of the night sometimes. That said, we loved it.

The *only* down side to it was, as Heidi mentioned above, it completely cut out our cell reception. It was HUGE aggravation. We did get a land line, but we missed many, many calls via our cell phones. Sometimes, if I pressed my head right up against the window, I could get a signal- but that was a rarity. And going outside to take a call in the middle of winter (even in NC) was a VERY cold and just not fun. So, please do investigate if this is a problem with current metal roofs. Even though we loved-loved-loved our metal roof for all the fun sounds it brought inside- the lack of a cell signal was a big enough PITA that we probably would not put a metal roof on our own home.

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15.June.2011

My husband and I just bought a house in December with a metal roof. Most of the comments above mentioned things that I was going to mention, little to no cell phone reception, very loud when it rains, sounds like an avalanche when the snow falls off the roof and it will fade over time. The roof had a 50 year warranty, but would only transfer to two owners of the home, we were the third, and you must have the paperwork for the roof, we do not, so the warranty didn’t mean anything to us. Our insurance will not cover the roof for any hail/cosmetic damages. Basically the roof will have to be taken away by a tornado before they will cover any damages for the roof. So, check the warranty for a new metal roof and see what they will and won’t cover.

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15.June.2011

love the idea of a metal roof – that’s something I never thought about.
we are also doing a reno on a red brick 50’s cape, and metal would
look great. the cell phone reception might be a deal breaker though….

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15.June.2011

I live in the SF Bay Area and would love a metal roof, but because they are not as common out here the prices are astronomical. But I think they are the most stylish look possible, both cottage, classic and modern at the same time. Congratulations!

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16.June.2011

We just had a hail storm on Tuesday. I guess I need to call out the insurance people just to make sure. My mom got a new roof last year after 2 awful hail storms. I love metal roofs, and they are just a much better product than shingles. Who wouldn’t want a roof that lasts 50 yrs or more?! Plus, if you go with the spray foam insulation on the roof deck, it should cut down on noise. Yay for big remodeling discounts!

–Brittany @ RemodelVenture

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24.June.2011

We bought a foreclosure almost 2 years ago this summer and the roof had to be replaced before our loan would go through. I really wanted a metal roof, so we ended up paying the difference, just like you’re doing. We chose the dark bronze color and absolutely love it! It’s not loud like a traditional barn roof, since there is more up on the roof of the house then just the metal (like plywood, tar paper etc). But it still gives me just the slightest bit of plinking when it rains and hails. I love it. We live out in the country, so we wanted our ranch style home to start adapting to the setting and looking more rustic cottage. And it’s perfect with all the trees that blow all their pine needles and leaves on top- my hubby just gets up there and hoses it off. Hope you guys love yours when it gets put on! Can’t wait to see it!

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14.October.2012

I live in southern California. Our neighbor just completed installation on his metal roof – similar to the “rocking metal roof” pictures above. When the sun hits it, around 2 p.m. until the sun moves completely beyond it, about 6:30 in the summer, we cannot use that side of our house because of the glare that reflects off the roof. We also cannot use our whole patio or backyard because of the reflection and the heat.

If anyone has any, ANY, solutions, please share. We’re miserable!

Thanks.

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