Copper Roof Cost and Pros & Cons in 2021

Copper is the gold of metal roofing. No literally, it is. It’s priced like gold, it’s valued like gold, and its color is gold. Well until it changes. Then it just becomes a thing of beauty for hundreds of years.

Cost

Perhaps the only disadvantage of a copper roof is the exuberantly high initial cost up front. It is, by far, the most expensive metal roofing option on the market, bar none.

Yet, when you take into consideration the benefits and value of copper, the cost factor be put into proper perspective.

For residential copper roofing and cladding projects, you can expect to pay in the range of $18.00 to $28.00 per sq. ft. installed.

Regardless of the shape of the copper pieces, the slope or complexity of your roof, and even your location, that range is what you ought to expect to pay.

Even on the low end, that is substantially more expensive than steel and aluminum ($8.50 to $15.50 per sq. ft. installed), though that depends on the roof style and quality of the finished metal.

The higher end of the copper roof cost depends on your location and your roof’s overall complexity and size. — Plan on paying more per sq. ft. when covering a smaller roof, such as a porch or bay window with significantly smaller square footage.

Key Considerations and Points to Keep in Mind:

You don’t have to cover your entire home with copper to have a beautiful copper roof that highlights and protects parts of your home.

For example, many homeowners will accent their homes by using copper on a prominently situated bay windows or install a smaller copper roof that covers the main entry way.

For an average-sized American home with a roof that is approximately 2,000 square feet, you can expect to pay between $36,000 to $56,000 for a complete copper roof. A copper shingles roof will generally cost less than copper standing seam that requires soldering of the copper seams.

The true average is closer to $35,000 to $45,000, but even that is around four times the cost of an asphalt shingle roof.

In terms of ROI, metal roofing generally returns a value between 75% and 86% of the cost (depending on the house, location, and price paid for a new metal roof) upon selling of the home. And almost all residential-grade metal roofing systems with Kynar 500 paint finish will last at least 50 years, assuming proper installation. Yet, steel and aluminum roofs may likely require some sort of maintenance like re-painting after 30 years.

Copper, along with Zinc, are essentially maintenance free, and both can go for a very long time before any maintenance is necessary.

Therefore, on the right house at the right neighborhood, an 80% to 86% ROI is perhaps the lowest cost-to-value return you can plan on given the length of time a copper roof will last.

At RoofingCalc.com, they estimate an average copper roof at $38,000 on the low end to $55,000 on the high end. plus. That’s about average for a typical single-family house with a roof measuring about 1,600 to 2,000 sq. ft. — This price also includes all the necessary permitting, tear off and disposal of the old roof, clean-up, etc.

The Value and Options

via Levine & Company

Other than flat roofs, there’s really not a style of a roof that Copper can’t be applied to.

With some installations, you’ll see copper applied to domes or on mansard roofs, given its longevity and durability.

For residential installations, whether it be Metal Shingles (or tiles), Standing Seam, horizontal seam, or accentuating a smaller roof area or bay windows, copper roofing will work just as well.

Did you know? Copper, unlike steel and aluminum will never corrode or rust. And thanks to its natural patination process, it never needs painting or re-coating.

So, copper starts off gold. Beautiful and grand. Yet, like all things, the beauty is in the eye of the beholder. For the patina process, not only provides an ongoing layer of protection, but turns the metal into a green, natural covering.

Patination can help copper last up to a thousand years. Well, in theory. It may need some repair during that time span, but the good thing is copper is easy to repair. An expert installer will solder copper to cover small patches or replace larger pieces, via soldering, as needed.

Also, Copper, like other metals is recyclable. So much so, that it is quite likely several existing copper roofs are made of up to 75% recycled Copper. For additional benefits, see the advantages section below.

Advantages

  • Durability – lasts a very long time
  • Virtually maintenance free
  • Great, natural color / beauty
  • Like other metals, insects won’t feed on it, fire won’t burn it, mildew and fungus can’t affect it
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Excellent ROI
  • Great versatility in application

Disadvantages

  • Cost – Of all the metal roofs, copper is easily the most expensive
  • Best applied by experienced professional, and may be challenging to find one

Not too shabby when your disadvantages are few and far between. 😉

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