I'm building a new house and can't decide what type of roof is best. I live in a tropical country where the day temperature is always above 32 degrees celcius. The criteria I want for the roof are: - doesn't turn my house into an oven - zero or low maintenance - less leak problems - no pests - better performance during earthquake

I intially wanted a hip, tile roof, but I hesitate at the thoughts of having to clean the gutter often and rats getting inside the ceiling.

Your feedback will be much appreciated.


I'm a big fan of corrugated steel roofs. They are noisy in a rain, especially if you have the windows open, and have little or no insulation in the ceiling space. They are quieter if they are firmly attached to mass: E.g. a steel roof over 3/4" OSB over trusses will be quieter than steel over 2x4 purlons over truss.

Steel roofs are commonly done on trusses at 4 foot spacing here for machine sheds Roofing fluctuates a lot in price, but my latest shed it was 2.35 Canadian per running foot 3 feet wide. Call it 80 cents per square foot. They last about 40-50 years. Nowadays you can get them in a large variety of colours. In a tropical climate I would get white, or very pale yellow.

In a tropical climate I would consider very oversize trusses so that you have and 8-10 foot overhang all the way around. This reduces solar heating, and gives you a bunch of outdoor space that normally doesn't get wet.

  • ...but beware of hurricane uplift if in a part of the tropics subject to that sort of thing, especially with lots of extra overhang. – Ecnerwal Oct 9 '19 at 0:15
  • Standing Seam Metal -- you won't regret it (other than the cost). – peinal Oct 17 '19 at 17:50

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