The roof over your head is one of the most important features of your home. It defends against the natural elements and keeps you warm, safe, and dry.

In Florida, your roof needs to be exceptionally strong to protect you from harsh UV rays, hurricane-force winds, and rain and moisture — especially if you're living in an older or historic home.

If the time has come to make repairs to or replace the roof of your older Florida home, understanding the historic roof construction, how to make roof modifications, and alternative roofing materials is hugely important.

Historic Roof Construction vs. Modern Roof Construction

When homes were first being built more than 100 years ago, the main material used in roofing was clay tiles. Clay tiles were the choice material for a traditional roof because they're fireproof, which provided home and business owners peace of mind. That said, because of their popularity, roof design details got fairly monotonous.

Historic and older roofs also weren't constructed with the same waterproofing capabilities as they are today. While clay tiles are still being used today — and are one of the longest-lasting material options — technological advancements have created more options for materials and better waterproofing capabilities.

Alternative Roofing Materials

Old house roof material tends to be heavy. Today, however, there are a variety of roofing shingle alternatives to choose from, many of which are lightweight. Some of the most common choices are:

Metal roofing. Metal roofs are popular in Florida for several reasons. Aluminum roofs withstand salt corrosion, and both steel and aluminum can endure heavy rainfall and extreme winds. Metal is also great for keeping your home cool because it deflects UV rays, rather than absorbing them.

Clay tiles. Clay tiles are a staple in the roofing world for a reason: They're durable and with proper care can last up to 30 years. Further, they're fireproof and don't rot when exposed to moisture.

Roof Repairs or Roof Modifications for Older Florida Homes

If you live in a historic home or an older home and are looking to replace or repair your roof, there are several important things to consider:

1. Have a roof assessment done. Having an assessment done by the professionals at Latite Roofing allows you to determine whether you should replace your entire roof or just do routine maintenance. It also helps you figure out what material you currently have on your roof and equips you to decide what the best material is to use going forward.

2. Consider which roofing materials you want to use. When doing a replacement or repair, you can start from scratch and choose any of the materials listed above based on your needs. Do you want a sturdier roof? A decorative roof? Answer these questions first, and then you can move forward selecting materials. Our team of experts can also determine if your home or building meets the current code requirements for wind and water.

3. Understand the rules and regulations. If your home is a historical landmark, the process of repairing and replacing your roof will look different as there are different codes and regulations that need to be followed.

Your roof protects you and your home. It keeps you dry and keeps you safe. Making sure it's strong is one of the most important things you can do as a homeowner. If your older or historic home has a roof that needs to be repaired or replaced, give us a call today. With over 75 years of experience in the roofing business, we understand historic roof construction better than the rest.