It can be difficult to choose the right roof design to fit your home. Different styles offer certain advantages or are more suited for certain types of houses, roofing materials, or climate patterns. To help you decide which is best for you, we’re going to look at six of the most popular roof design ideas and the unique features and advantages of each one.

Gable Roof Design

The gable roof design is one of the most common roof styles. It features the traditional triangular roof shape with two planes that meet at a top ridgeline. This simple roof design allows for many style options including affordable asphalt shingles, classic wood shingles, durable roofing tile, or an energy efficient metal roof.

The gable is a favorite roof design of many roofers because of its flexibility and customization. It can be adjusted to any pitch, whether you’d prefer a low-slope ranch style roof or a steep A-frame roof to prevent snow buildup.

Hipped Roof Design

A hipped roof is similar to a gable roof design, except all sides of the home are covered. Instead of two planes, a hipped roof has four. The advantage of this is that all sides of the home are protected and shaded, lengthening the life of your exterior materials like siding, brick, or stone. 

A hipped roof is great for homes situated in high-wind areas because it is more difficult for gusts to get under the eaves. A hipped roof design works with most slopes, and can be easily combined with other roof designs, making it a truly versatile style. Similar to a gable roof, a hipped roof can be covered with a variety of materials, from shingles to metal panels, depending on your unique needs for protection against the elements.

Gambrel Roof Design

The gambrel roof features two slopes on opposing sides of the home that join together at an angle in the middle, to create a barn-like roof design. The gambrel roof features attractive visual contrast, while creating additional space for an attic or small room. This roof design isn’t ideal for homes that experience extreme snowfall, as heavy snow can put weight on the roof and home’s structure. 

Gambrel roofs can be covered with many materials. Metal roofing is the most durable, but it’s also common for gambrel roofs to be adorned with asphalt or wood shingles.

Flat Roof Design

A flat roof design is not completely flat, but has minimal slope to allow water to drain and not pool on top. To facilitate runoff, drains and gutters are used to control water movement. Flat roofs are commonly used in modern homes and commercial spaces. Instead of shingles, they are sealed with a waterproofing membrane and EPDM rubber, PVC, or asphalt coating.

Flat roofs are versatile, and can even accommodate additional living space if designed for that purpose. Some people convert their flat roof design into a green roof, which uses plants to cover roofing material for insulation, air quality improvement, and energy efficiency.

Shed Roof Design

Like flat roofs, the shed roof design is simple and streamlined. This roof design uses an angled slope to cover the whole roof area, like half of a gable roof. It’s used in modern homes or in conjunction with other roof design styles. The advantage of a shed roof is that it allows more space for natural light. The disadvantage is that more of the house is left unshaded and unprotected. Shed roofs look sleek when combined with a modern roofing material like tile or metal, but can accommodate any roof covering material.

Combination Roof Design

If you don’t want to commit to just one style, customize your roof with different roof design elements. Use hipped and gable, shed and lean to, or add dormers for visual appeal and more light. Customizing your roof design allows you to maximize interior space where you want it, such as for vaulted ceilings or attic space. 

Use the advantages of different styles for your roof design to help you enjoy the most natural light, shade, insulation, ventilation, protection from the elements, and energy efficiency where it’s needed most. Keep it simple by limiting your roof design to a few shapes and work with a professional roofer to make sure the plan makes sense for your home’s structure, location, and style. 

Roof design might seem straightforward, where function is always more important than form, but it can be so much more. Your roof design sets an important tone for the rest of your home. It can define a unique style while also creating space and protection.

Just not sure where to start with roof design for your new home? Talk to the Werner Roofing team. We’d be happy to coordinate with your builder to design the roof that best compliments your taste and your new home’s style, while being functional and efficient for your home’s structure and the climate where you live. Give us a call at 616-844-5382 or contact us on the web.


If you’re considering a new roof, the first step is to have us come out for a FREE inspection. This will allow us to evaluate your roof and give an honest estimate based on your roof’s current condition.


Do you have a roofing question? We’re here to help. Just let us know what you’re wondering about, and one of our representatives will get back with you shortly.

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