When building a home, we often focus on the walls and exterior ‘skin’ of our building and give little or no thought to an underestimated feature of your structure, the roof. We understand it protects us from the elements, wind/rain/sun, etc. But do you know what your roof is really doing? And what are some alternative options to turn your roof into an architectural feature?
A hipped roof is where all four (or more) sides of the roof slope downwards towards the walls. This is fantastic for water drainage, and there is little or no chance for water to stand and pool on your roof’s surface. Because it has all sides sloping towards the walls, it also allows for it to be incorporated into the existing structure, ensuring excellent strength and durability in high winds. This is the most common style of roofing in Australia, and your builder should be confident with its construction methods saving time and money.
Most commonly seen within most modern style homes, commercial buildings and apartment blocks, the flat roof creates a bold architectural statement. Although it appears flat to the naked eye, it does indeed have a slight slope that allows water to run off the flat surface and distribute into drains, scuppers, and gutters. Most common roofing materials are not applicable to the flat roof surface and are instead made up of rubber membranes and tar/asphalt coatings to repel water and prevent it seeping into the ceiling.
The skillion roof is most commonly referred to as the ‘shed roof’ or ‘lean-to.’ Not only does this style of roof provide a modern/minimalist look but is also highly practical for water and rain runoff minimising the need for more expensive materials and waterproof membranes. Its other advantages are its simplicity. It is easy to construct and requires only rudimentary materials which makes it an excellent option for a DIY construction.
For a stunning architectural feature in your home, the butterfly roof could be your answer. It is where your two roofing panels meet in the middle creating a ‘V’ mimicking the wings of a butterfly in flight. The butterfly roofs main advantage is its ability to allow more natural light to enter the voids of your home and providing a light airy aesthetic. One disadvantage, however, is a greater need for drainage capacity as its large ‘wings’ collect a significant amount of water and funnel it down the middle.
So, when considering which roof you should choose on your new home consider which roof best suits your architectural intent and general pragmatics of where you live.