Concrete vs. Clay Roof Tile Cost 2020: Pros & Cons of Tile Roofs

Do you love the distinctive and attractive look of roof tiles? If the answer is yes, then you are among a growing number of homeowners who pick tiles as the roofing material of choice for their homes.

Clay Roof Tiles installed on a traditional roof hip roof

A tile roof is a costly upfront investment, especially if you opt for clay tiles rather than concrete ones. However, tiles offer many great benefits including durability, longevity, energy-efficiency, great curb appeal, low maintenance, hurricane-grade wind mitigation (with proper installation and maintenance), fire safety, and more.

Traditional (non-metal made) tiles are most commonly available in either concrete or clay, and come in a multitude of shapes, profiles and colors.

The Difference in Cost Between Concrete vs. Clay Tiles

For all the reasons mentioned above it should come as no surprise that clay tiles cost about 30% more than concrete tiles, with an average cost of clay tiles hoovering around $10.50 to $18.50 per square foot installed.

Ludowici tile roof – Flat slab Georgian. Source: Ludowici.com

More exotic tiles can easily cost as much as $20 to $30 per square foot installed, though. Thus, there is a lot of variation in price to be expected, depending on how fancy a tile you want to pick.

In terms of total costs installed, a basic tile roof could cost anywhere from $20,000 to $40,000, depending on the size of your house, tile choice, and location of your property.

New Shingle Roof

$7,500
Average price
New Metal Roof

$14,500
Average price
New Flat Roof

$8,225
Average price

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Since both, clay and concrete tiles are expensive in comparison to most other roofing choices, you’ll need to consider whether all the added benefits that real tiles have to offer are worth the extra expense.

Keep in mind that the total life-cycle cost of tiles is actually quite low compared to composition shingles, since clay tiles can last for as long as 100 years, while concrete tiles should protect your roof for 50 years plus.

Verdict: if unique style and authenticity is what you are looking for, then tiles can be a sound choice for your home, provided that you are also willing to invest in the structural reinforcement of your roof truss structure.

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