Know Your Options: What Are the Best Roofing Materials for a House in Minnesota?

Know Your Options: What Are the Best Roofing Materials for a House in Minnesota?

At first glance at a residential home, you might be able to distinguish the part of the world they’re in. Each autochthonous architecture has a distinctive look but is not entirely culturally conditioned.

You see, architecture adapts to the climate of the area. This is why most homes in desert areas can have flat roofs, while those in areas with much rainfall have sloped ones.

Although there are exceptions to this rule, some flat roof designs are popular even in places like Dublin. Generally speaking, however, Roofs are probably the most distinguishing feature of these architectures.

While cultural borders are quickly being erased, climate conditions are still a factor worth considering. This is why your roof style and roofing material used need to be well-suited for the area that you live in.

With that in mind and without further ado, here are your options for the best roofing materials for a house in Minnesota.

What Must a Minnesota Home Roof Endure?

Minnesotan winters can be pretty harsh, and even summers are known to be rainy. These are the two most important issues worth discussing. In other words, a Minnesotan roof must be resistant to rain and provide excellent insulation.

It’s not all about the shingles, either. Since the layer of snow on the roof might be pretty heavy, the structure also needs to be sturdy. Ideally, the crew constructing the structure needs to be skilled and familiar with Minnesotan winters.

What Are the Best Materials for a Minnesota Home?

Now that we understand what a Minnesotan roof will have to endure, we can start listing some of your best choices for a Minnesotan Home.


The first and most obvious choice is asphalt shingles. For starters, they work great in low temperatures and are resistant to layers of snow. This makes asphalt roofing capable of withstanding even the harshest of Minnesotan winters.

While their protection against rain is also quite impressive, this is no different from any other roofing material. After all, this is a primary purpose of a shingle.

Another advantage of asphalt is its low-maintenance material. This is important because cleaning and fixing your roof is complicated and dangerous.

While they last a bit less than other materials, asphalt shingles are much more cost-effective. When you compare their durability against their cost, you still come out ahead.

Sure, it means reroofing ahead of time (even if you don’t directly lose money), but it also means having a new roof sooner. Please don’t get disheartened; when we say shorter, we mean 15 to 30 years instead of 50. In other words, these worries are way in the future.


Tiles can be made out of clay or concrete, significantly affecting their properties. Both materials are weather resistant, which is precisely what a Minnesota-based home needs.

They also help conserve energy, which is significant because about a quarter of all heat gets lost via a roof.

These roofs require minimal maintenance, and since they should last for more than 50 years, there will be not much reason for you to go up there. The exception is the mandatory cleaning of gutters.

One of the most significant advantages of tile roofs is their pest resistance. There are not many roofing materials that are impervious to insect damage. Also, it’s important to mention that both materials are eco-friendliness.

The biggest problem is the cost. A tile roof can cost a small fortune, usually twice as much as an asphalt roof. Also, the installation is more complex, so it will take longer and cost more. Moreover, a chance of a botched job will increase.

Wood shakes

Wood shake roofs are probably the most controversial on this list. First, they are incredibly insulating since wood is a poor conductor of heat. This means that your home will stay warmer in the winter and colder in the summer.

They are also resistant to wind, which is one of your priorities in Minnesota. In this state, temperature changes are rapid and drastic, further fueling the wind by setting the air on the move.

When observed, Minnesota has higher national averages than other states all year round. Also, while Chicago, Illinois, bears the title of Windy City, the data suggests that Minneapolis is even windier.

The problem with wood shakes is their cost and maintenance. Wood, especially quality wood, is not a cheap material.

Moreover, to protect it from insects and the sun, you must apply a coating semi-regularly. Needless to say, this is an extra effort that you might not be ready for.

Finally, it goes without saying that wood is flammable. While some may not associate Minnesota with wildfires, this is a considerable threat. After all, the last one happened in 2021. You can never be too careful, which is why some might dismiss this option immediately.

Metal shingles

The reasons why you should choose metal shingles are numerous. First, they reduce your home’s cooling costs by 10% to 25%, which is already huge.

The problem is that the material is expensive, and the installation is even more costly. The installation can cost 2-3 times more than asphalt shingles.

From the aesthetic point of view, things can get problematic. Sure, some architectural styles work great with metal shingles, but since the number of colors is limited, you’ll have limited options. Those who prioritize aesthetics usually go for tiles.

As far as longevity goes, they will outlast any other material on this list.

Now, they are also much heavier. This can be problematic relative to your home’s weight-bearing capacity. With the average annual snowfall varying from 36 to 70 inches in Minnesota (depending on the region), this might not be ideal.

Wrap Up

In the end, it all comes down to what you prioritize. Those who want to go for the looks should choose tiles or wood. Those concerned with longevity and want the roof to outlast even their grandkids should pick metal.

Lastly, those who want to go for cost-effectiveness might fare best with asphalt shingles. While this principle is universally applicable, when it comes to Minnesota, it’s even more important to stick to this rule.

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