Colorbond vs tile roofs

One of the big decisions homeowners about to embark on a major home renovation project need to decide, is to whether to go for a Colorbond tin roof or to stick with a more traditional tiled roof.

The answer is that there is no hard and fast right and wrong decision. You simply need to weigh up all the different factors and variables unique to your home, to make the right decision that best suits you.

We have put together the many different aspects that you need to consider, so you can make the decision that best suits your circumstances and your home.

The advantages of a Colorbond TIN ROOF

Metal roof sheeting is light and quick to install. Being quick to install makes the installation of a tin roof cheaper than a tiled roof.

Colorbond tin comes in a range of colours and with today’s modern colour palettes you can get a better aesthetic that ties in with your colour scheme. With minimal maintenance required, a colorbond tin roof will retain its true colour for many years.

The roof frame to support the tin sheeting is lighter in design as it is not required to hold up as much weight as tiles so this can be your most affordable option.


Will a TIN roof suit an older style home?

Absolutely!!! At Amerex, we re-roof older character homes with a tin roof on a regular basis. Whether you have a Californian bungalow, 1960’s style home or an old heritage cottage, a tin roof can tie in with any style of home.

The disadvantages of a tin roof

Access through the top of the roof is limited. This can be a nuisance if a trade requires roof access down the track for maintenance work.

It is important the roof tin and frame are adequately tied down as per the engineering design. If this is not done correctly, the roof could blow off. To ensure it is done correctly, always get a registered builder to supervise the tin roof installation.

Many Perth character homes had a tiled roof originally

If the tiles on your current home are very old – and in particular if they are concrete tiles that are porous – then they are probably cracked in places or at very least brittle. This causes leaks into the roof space and will contribute to dampness and mould. Not good. If you are about to add an extension to your home, or a second storey addition, it is definitely worth thinking about re-roofing the entire home at the same time.

The case for choosing a tiled roof

Roof tiles come in a range of different profiles and can contribute to the overall design theme of the home. If you are only adding a small section of new roof with your home extension and the current roof tiles are in good repair, then it makes sense to stick with a tiled roof and select matching tiles.

Tiled Roofs in Heritage protected areas

In fact, some councils will insist tiles are to be used as part of their design guidelines for specific areas such as designated heritage zones within older suburbs. Make sure you ask at your local council before you make a decision, as you may just find that you need to comply with the heritage guidelines and stick with tiles.

Potential disadvantages of having a tiled roof

A tiled roof is heavier than a metal sheet roof and the roof structure required to support a tiled roof needs more supporting beams than a tin roof. This can add to the overall expense to your home improvement project.

It is also worth noting that tiles are not as secure as a metal roof and as such it is relatively easy for anybody to lift a few tiles and gain unauthorised access to your home. If security is an important aspect for you, then tiles might not be the best choice.

What costs more – tile or tin?

Tin can be a more affordable option for a large section of roof. A tin roof is lighter so doesn’t need as many supporting beams which reduces the cost of installation. In addition, because tin is faster to install, you will also save on reduced labour costs. For smaller projects, it is often easier and more cost effective to match the existing roof tiles. The only time we would advise against this, is when the roof tiles are old concrete. Old concrete tiles are awful things and are better off in the skip bin!


We hope you learnt something from this article!

If you want to see more example of tin and tile roofs on real home renovation projects, check out the Before and Afters page. You will see a great mix of both tin and tiled roofs which just goes to show, the answer is not ‘one size fits all’!


“If existing tiles are deemed to be still in good condition, they can be reused for the new addition. Reusing roof sheeting would be rare”.