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8 Most Popular Types Of Roofs To Choose From When Building Your Own Home

When designing and building your own house there are a few major elements that you need to keep in mind. They are the basics of design and include elements such as the type of material, the shape of the house, the shape of the roof and all sorts of other details. Choosing a roof shape is more difficult than it seems. There are many different types to choose from and they all have unique characteristics.

The gambrel roof.

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This is a Dutch-inspired type of roof and it’s similar to a gable roof with the exception that one side is steeper than the other. It features vertical gable ends and it hangs over the façade of the house. It’s a type of roof mostly common in barns.

The mansard roof.

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This French-inspired type of roof is made up of four slopes, two on each side of the house. The lower slope is steeper and more vertical than the upper slope. There are some similarities between a mansard roof and a gable roof but the differences are also major. This type of roof is wonderful for creating additional living or storage space at the top of the house.

The flat roof.

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Very easy to identify, flat roofs are one of the oldest and simplest types of roofs. They are extremely common and one of their main advantages is the fact that the construction of the building becomes significantly easier and it also eliminates the need for perpendicular or parallel walls. Flat roofs have a shallow pitch that’s around 1 or 2 degrees but since they feature no slope or tilt they cause debris and water to accumulate at the top. Flat roofs require high maintenance and are best suited for dry areas and tall buildings.

The sloping roof.

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Also very common, sloping roofs refer to any type of roof that is either slightly or completely tilted. It’s a general terms that defined most common residential roofs. Their main advantage is the fact that they don’t allow water or debris to accumulate at the top.

The salt box roof.

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This is a type of roof that has a very interesting look and that features certain similarities with the gable roof. It’s made of two roofs that meet at a ridge line. They form a triangle with one side bigger than the other. This type of roof evolved during the 20th century and its asymmetrical design has made it very popular.

The hip roof.

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Very similar to the pyramid roof, the hip roof has four slopes that are elevated and joined together. The sloped don’t meet at a single point. The top of the roof is flattened and this allows the four corners of the square to be occupied by the slopes. This is a very practical type of roof, mostly suited for small structures.

The green roof.

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A very beautiful alternative to a simple roof, the green roof is a very nice option for structures with multiple levels. It’s a flat roof covered with sustainable, drought-resistant plants or grass. There are also versions featuring artificial grass. The main goal is to provide a beautiful view for the rooms on the upper levels.

The skillion roof.

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You can either think of this roof as one half of a triangle roof or as a flat roof that’s been slightly inclined. It’s a single sloping roof surface and it’s often used for only one portion of the house. It’s usually combined with other types of roofs and it’s a nice option for multi-level structures.

Picture sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8.

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Posted in How To, Tips, and Advice on November 13, 2012

About the author

Simona Ganea
She may not be very fond of people, finding them annoying most of the time, but she still enjoys helping them from the shadows. Her attention to detail drives others crazy yet remains her most appreciated characteristic.

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