Residential vs. Commercial Roofing: 4 Main Differences

roof repairs in Perth

Not all roofs are created equally. Each roof has a different design, installation, cost, maintenance requirements, and life expectancy. There are two main brackets of roofing systems: residential and commercial. Both types of roofing have their own purposes and nuances—which is why it’s important to know what you need when setting up your roofing solution.

Form Vs. Function

In general, all roofs are designed to protect everyone in any building from exterior elements and should be able to withstand all extreme climates. These also provide stability to any overall structure.

Commercial roofs are usually made of heavy-duty materials to ensure that bigger buildings remain in place and protect large groups of people. There is little to no concern about aesthetics when it comes to commercial roofing systems.

Residential roofing systems, on the other hand, are designed explicitly for single-family homes. Generally, homeowners also place a heavy priority on the decorative appearance of their roof. After all, the roof is one of the first things you see when viewing a home from the sidewalk!

Main Differences Between Residential And Commercial Roofing

  1. Roof Materials

One of the biggest differences between the two roofing systems is their material. The choice of material for residential roofs largely depends on the homeowner’s preference—wood, asphalt, and clay vary in appearance, maintenance requirements, and durability.

Most commercial roof systems are made of flat, single-ply membranes and metal panels. When it comes to choosing material, there is more of a focus on the building’s function. For example, suppose a commercial building houses a lot of heavy machinery. In that case, the roofing material should withstand extreme heat not just from the sun but from machinery exhaust as well.

  1. Size

Commercial buildings vary significantly in size. Large warehouses and factories can cover multiple city blocks or can just be an unassuming office building along a main thoroughfare. They are generally much larger than the majority of homes.

Residential roofs, on the other hand, are very similarly sized. Only large, sprawling mansions are the exception.

  1. Roof Design and Installation

Most commercial roofs have completely flat designs so that the entire space of the building can be utilised efficiently. Commercial roof installation is also very complex and requires highly skilled service. There are numerous structures and equipment unique to every building, such as airflow systems, piping, smokestacks, and more. Commercial roof replacement and maintenance, on the other hand, is much less precarious than sloped residential roofs.

Residential roofs have high slopes that allow water, snow, and other debris to run off. There is minimal disruption in installation because homes usually don’t have too many exterior structures that need attention. A few chimneys, skylights, and solar panels aren’t too disruptive.

  1. Overall Cost

Roofing projects are a considerably large investment, no matter the roof type you have. Roofs need to be as sturdy and long-lasting as possible, so it’s not an area that you should try to scrimp and save on.

As a whole, commercial roofing is much more expensive than residential roofing. Not just because of the larger area that needs covering but because commercial roofing projects are much more specialised. More expertise, more crew, and more equipment are required to pull this off—thus justifying the cost of this investment.


Residential and commercial roofs differ in form, function, material, design, and cost. All roofing requires proper installation using high-quality materials. No matter what type of roof or building you own, you will always need highly experienced roofing contractors to offer you the best advice and services that you require.

Are you in need of roof repairs in Perth, WA? Austin Roofing is the best choice for you! We have all the requisite qualifications to guarantee that your job will be completed to your satisfaction. Our experienced, energetic, and highly qualified team only uses the latest materials and roofing techniques. Contact us today and get a free quote!