Roof Types: 43 Different Styles of Roofs for Home

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So you want to know about the different styles of roofs to choose the best option for your home? Because remember, when it comes to your home, you deserve nothing short of the best there is. You want something that can last a long while and also give you a homely feeling.

But I’m sure you have been bombarded with technical jargon so far, and you want something simple, something that speaks to you. Look no further than this article, for we’re going to do a deep dive into the various styles of roofs for homes out there. We’ll also compare flat and pitched roofs to give you an idea of which one would be ideal for your home. Let’s begin!


43 Different Styles of Roofs for Home

We’re going to look at types of roofs with their features and uses to give you a better idea. You can choose the kind of roof you’d prefer for your house easily using all this information!

1. A-Frame

This style gets its name from its shape which resembles the letter A. It has two sloped sides, which allow it to withstand a lot of climactic extremities, from high winds to heavy rains. They’re super affordable, have a unique design, and can be built yourself. However, its sloping nature can create some problematic interior angles that can result in difficulty in furniture arrangement, limit your space and cause heating problems. 

2. Bonnet Roof

Seen those walls with sloping roofs on all four sides? That’s a bonnet roof, also sometimes called a modified hip roof or a belcote roof. The style can further be modified into different substyles, but they all have an overhang, with the sides extending beyond the house walls. Be it aesthetics, be it wind resistance, or providing some shade to the balcony, these roofs are great. However, you must vary their manufacturing costs and potential leaking issues.

3. Bow Roof

Traditionally used by boatbuilders to create temporary shelters in their boats, bow roofs have various applications now. They are often used in greenhouse shelters, and the basic setup can be covered by different materials like plastic or metal to suit any requirements. These roofs can be built easily, can be comfortably shifted from one place to another, and offer resistance to winds and snow. Because of their simple construction, they have low maintenance costs and don’t require much time to set up. 

4. Butterfly Roof

The reverse of a standard gable roof, a butterfly roof looks like the wings of a butterfly (hence the name) or the letter V. Their design gives your house a chic aesthetic while also allowing for larger doors and windows to allow maximum sunlight for the indoors. It also allows you to harvest rainwater while ensuring optimal resistance to winds. However, if you live in a snowy region, this type would be a bad idea because of obvious reasons. Keep in mind too that these types of roofs are pretty expensive to build.

5. Curved Roof


This type is generally used in large structures such as memorials and factories. These are some of the simplest roof types to construct, so if you’re short on either budget or time (or both), this would be an ideal type. They last for long durations and barely require any maintenance, which means they’re cheaper in both the short and long terms. Keep in mind though, that the costs increase as you go for the more complex variants of curved roofs.

6. Combination Roof

The name says it all. When you combine different roof styles to create something that fits all your preferences, it can be termed a combination roof. Just make sure that you’re hiring experts to select the right kind of roof types for different regions of your house, otherwise, it might turn out worse than the individual styles. This option allows you to find the right balance between your stylistic preferences and the climactic challenges that you might face.

7. Clerestory Roof


For those who love sunlight and want their house to have as much light and ventilation as possible, clerestory roofs are a great option to go for. This design has a short wall over the roof line which is lined with windows that allow for additional sunlight inside while also allowing optimal ventilation. They also have an uncommon look that can help your house to stand out from others. You might find some difficulty in finding shades or covers for the upper windows, and the maintenance costs for this type are also at the higher end.

8. Dormer Roof

Simply put, a dormer roof is a roof that has a dormer built-in or added to it. Dormers are usually added to create window spaces in your roof panes and let in more light inside your house. However, keep in mind that they can be a costly addition to your house, and must be installed after expert consultation to ensure it fits in with your house’s design.

9. Dome Roof

These types of roofs have a history that dates back thousands of years. They’re shaped in the form of an upper half of a hollow sphere and can be seen in several historical monuments even today. This type is further found in different designs and has many benefits. For one, they have an aesthetic minimalism that looks great in modern architecture. They’re also cost and energy efficient and have a long life.

10. Flat Roof

Flat roofs are a popular type and have many subtypes of their own. They are a great choice if you live in a region that doesn’t observe a lot of rainfall and snow as they create the risk of leakages. These roofs are easy to clean and maintain and have lower upfront costs too. They also provide an open space that can be used by adults and children alike. 

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11. Gambrel Roof

Gambrel roofs are somewhat similar to gabled roofs, but instead of having one slope on each side, they have two. As a result, they look more stylish and are sure to stand out in any neighborhood. You can choose from a variety of materials while constructing this roof, and the construction prices are on the low end too. However, if you live in an area where snowstorms or heavy winds are common, better avoid this style.

12. Gabled Roof

This style has been used over millennia and is still relevant all this time later. Lucy Montgomery and her bestselling novel Anne of Green Gables made this style even more popular over the decades since its release. This type has various classic and modern variants, some of which we’ll see in this article itself. Gabled roofs aren’t suited for areas with high winds, something you must keep in mind while choosing the suitable roof style for your house.

13. Box Gabled Roof

If the triangular part of a gabled roof is more distinct, it’s a box-gabled roof. As simple as that. Therefore, the complete roof section is boxed in this type, and the style is distinct from a regular gabled roof primarily in its appearance from the outside.

14. Cross-Gabled Roof

If there’s more than one gabled roof in the same household, and designed in a way that they intersect each other, then it would be a cross-gabled roof. Usually, the angle of intersection is 90 degrees. If you plan to go for this style, make sure to work with an experienced architect as your house would require a complicated design.

15. Clipped Gable Roof

Gabled roofs aren’t very effective against strong winds. This slight modification helps in reducing the effective wind pressure on the roofs, making them more stable. Not to mention that it adds a distinct visual touch to your house’s overall appearance. This type can be commonly seen in bungalows.

16. Dutch Gable Roof

Combining the best of two styles, a dutch gable roof is a cross between a gable and a hip roof. Unlike gable roofs, hip roofs are great at withstanding high winds. While hip roofs have a small attic space, a dutch gable roof shows high resistance to winds while having more attic space than hip roofs. Also, unlike gable roofs, you can easily install a gutter system in this style. However, their complicated design results in overall expensive construction costs.

17. Open Gable Roof

From an aesthetic point of view, open gable roofs are like regular roofs only. Their primary distinction about them is that they aren’t entirely framed which means that the interior space goes all the way up to the roof. They can be easily designed and built, and you can rest easy when it comes to construction costs. But like it is with regular gable roofs, they’re not very resistant to strong winds or harsh weather, which is something you must keep in mind if you live in climactically harsh regions.

18. Front Gable Roof

This kind of roof is used to give the impression of multiple houses within one house. The name of this style comes from its position, i.e. the gable roof that is placed at the front area or the entrance of the house. This style is usually seen in older houses built in colonial times but is nowadays employed in some modern designs too.

19. Gable and Valley Roof Design

A valley in the middle and a gable at each end create this design. Benefits? It allows you to maximize the interior space, making complete use of the arched space created by a gable roof. This type is usually seen in multi-storied houses where they are more effective against rainfall and snow relative to the regular roof designs. This design is also sometimes referred to as a Gablet roof.

20. Gable Roof with Shed Addition

What do you do when you already have a gable roof installed in your house, but now want an extension at the front of your house? Maybe a porch, maybe a balcony for your upper stories? Simple. You add a shed at the front of your house. This makes sure that you don’t have to change the pre-existing design of your house while also ensuring that you have more space for yourself. This has been becoming an attractive option over the past decades because of increasing housing prices in the past few years and more people preferring to renovate their existing homes rather than shift to a new place.

21. Gable Roof with Dormer Window

Both gable roofs and dormer windows are popular designs, so, naturally, a combination of these two would be out there too. This is especially handy for houses where there’s space upstairs adjacent to the roof and you want it to be well-lit. The necessity for a dormer window in these situations arises because these windows are to be built around the roofs, and you need to build another structure for that, i.e. a dormer.

22. Hipped Roof

A hip roof, like a gable roof, is a broad style that incorporates several other roof styles within itself. Simply put, a hipped roof has a slope on all four sides of the roof, making it structurally strong. Since comparisons are natural, these roofs are better equipped in harsh weather, and therefore, if you live in a region that observes strong winds and rainfalls, hipped roofs are the option to pick. Do keep in mind that they’re more expensive than gable roofs and might also require higher maintenance costs over time.

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23. Half-Hipped Roof

This can be seen as a cross between a gable and a hip roof. The roof has a gable-roof-like structure, except for the top points. They are constructed like hip roofs, albeit not with an angle otherwise seen in hipped roofs. While this adds to the construction costs when compared to a gable roof, they also provide added resistance to winds and harsh weather.

24. Hip And Valley Roof

When a roof has multiple hipped parts that intersect at an area (called the valley), we call it a hip and valley roof. So instead of a rectangular house, you generally see a T or L-shaped house in this roof style. This design is pleasing to the eyes and also offers good resistance to winds, rain, and snow. Not just that, you can also have gutters on all sides, creating an efficient drainage system. However, like in all hipped roofs, they’re going to be heavy on your pockets both during construction and later in maintenance. 

25. Cross-Hipped Roof

A cross-hipped roof is a type of hip and valley roof, but only when the two roofs intersect while making an L shape.

26. Simple Hip Roof

A simple or standard hip roof has four sloped sides on a rectangular house with all sides meeting each other at the ridge.

27. Hexagonal Gazebo Roof

This roof style is a great choice for your gardens, although they require more planning than a regular gazebo roof. Usually created using wood, they look great aesthetically, and you always have the choice to further decorate them using vines or creepers. You can create even more complicated gazebos, like octagonal ones, but hexagonal gazebo roofs are the perfect combination as they’re relatively easier to build and have a better appearance than square ones. Do keep in mind that these roof styles take a lot of work to make and moving them from one location to another is truckloads of work (literally!).

28. Hidden Roof

The hidden (or secret roof) is a common roof design in urban areas nowadays. It’s called so because it’s hidden from sight because of walls that are jutting out in front of it. This style is very easy to install and repair, while also giving a modern touch to your home. They’re also cheaper to install than regular pitched roofs. However, they have a shorter lifespan and you might need to repair them regularly. Also, because of their angle, they don’t have an effective drainage system.

29. Jerkinhead Roof


This type of roof style combines a hip roof and a gable roof. We’ve already seen a clipped gable roof and a half-hipped roof, which are essentially the same as this style. This means better wind resistance and higher installation costs than a gable roof.

30. Lean To Roof

These are not independent roof styles, but an attachment that you can add to an existing building. A lean-to roof means a single-sloped roof that you can install on any structure for specific requirements. They’re easy to construct, can be made using any materials, are pretty cheap to install, and makes sure rain and snow don’t hold up on the surface. But keep in mind that they don’t offer high resistance to strong winds and aren’t always aesthetically pleasing. 

31. Mikoshi Roof

A mikoshi implies a richly decorated religious palanquin (think of a movable shrine) that’s used to transport deities from one temple to another. It’s mostly found in Japan and is also built in homes to keep deities. They can be rectangular, hexagonal, or octagonal, and usually has anywhere from 2 to 4 poles for shouldering them.

32. Mansard Roof

And we have another type along with the likes of hip roofs and gable roofs. Mansard roofs too have many modifications and variations that we are going to discuss further ahead. This type of roof was a primary symbol of French architecture that was particularly popular during the 17th century or so. This style is so cherished because of the extra space that it provides your interiors. Think of a cross between gambrel roofs and hip roofs, with dual angles on each side, and four-sided roofs. These roofs also give your house a better heat distribution because of the attic space, spreading heat evenly throughout the house. However, they’re pretty ineffective against harsh weather, and you’ll also have to incur heavy costs both for installation and maintenance.

33. Mansard With Dormers Roof Design


This style adds some more vintage charm to your already aesthetic house with a mansard roof. They also add more natural lighting to your house, and the design of dormers perfectly goes with the style of mansard roofs. In fact, most mansard roofs have more than one dormer installed.

34. Flare Out Mansard Roof

Sometimes a mansard roof can flare out at the bottom part, hence creating this roof style. This is done purely for the sake of architectural design, to create a more aesthetic look for your house. But keep in mind that they make the already complex installation process a tad bit more difficult. This design addition is usually done in the case of concave mansard designs, though they can also be observed in straight mansard roofs.

35. Pyramid Mansard Roof

Another roof style variation built for the sole purpose of adding aesthetic appeal, a pyramid mansard roof has a pyramid at the top of a mansard roof instead of a flat surface. 

36. Monitor Roof


Imagine a roof atop the primary roof. That’s what a monitor roof is. It’s built for its ability to provide extra light and ventilation to your house (what is referred to as the “atrium effect” in architecture). So technically, it’s less of a roof and more of a structure with a roof of its own running parallelly with the main roof of your house. This design is usually seen near farms and industries, though you might also sometimes find it in rural settings.

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37. M Shaped Roof

Take two gable roofs and built them adjacent to each other. There you go, you have an M-shaped roof, each half of the letter being created by one gable. Earlier, a series of M-shaped roofs were built in factory buildings, with numerous peaks that lent them the name sawtooth roofs. This roof style can add extra space to your house where the peaks are, and if you build windows on the roofs, you can have ample natural light in your house. But this design is somewhat complex to design and construct, why they are expensive to install and maintain. Plus heavy snowfall and rain can store in the gaps between the peaks, adding to your repair costs.

38. Pyramid Roof

Although this is a type of hip roof, the style can be added to almost any roof design. All you need to do is create four triangular slopes at the top that come together at one point, creating a pyramidal shape. They’re good at draining water and/or snow and are pretty effective against winds. They also add height to your building while adding an aesthetic charm to it. However, they can create awkward angles for your interiors and pose higher risks of leakage. Not to mention the obvious disadvantage that they’re pretty costly.

39. Parapet Roof

While traditionally built to defend forts and buildings from external attack, parapets are now used as a safety measure for your house. A parapet is an extension of the wall present at the roof edge and is nowadays built as a railing to give it an aesthetic appeal. But more than their aesthetic appeal, parapet roofs are useful because they protect your house against fires, provide additional wind resistance to your roof, and conceal anything you might leave on your rooftop.

40. Sawtooth Roof

Does the name sound familiar? That’s because we just talked about it a minute ago while discussing M-shaped roofs. These roofs have a series of double-pitched roofs that look like saw’s teeth, hence its name. They have high ceilings with windows that give them sufficient light and space, not to mention their design that is certain to stand out. But as we saw before, they are costlier to build and maintain and aren’t fit for areas that observe heavy snow or rainfall.

41. Saltbox Roof

A variation of a gable roof, a saltbox roof is a style where the two slopes in a gable are unsymmetrical. They’re often referred to as colonial-styled homes almost interchangeably, because of how prevalent this design was in colonial America. These roofs are ideal for places that observe heavy rains, snowfall, or winds. You can create this roof using a variety of materials, and they’re pretty easy to maintain over a long period. The interior angle that the roof creates, however, might be a concern to some and should be taken into consideration.

42. Skillion Roof

Fan of minimalistic architecture? You’re going to love this style! This roof design has one flat sloping surface, providing a simple drainage solution for those living in regions with heavy rain or snowfall. They’re easy and cost-effective to install and maintain while lending your house a sleek look. They can be used as your main roof or in extensions too. But if you’re a fan of large attic spaces, this style doesn’t give you much of that.

43. Shed Roof

This is another name for skillion roofs, though the term is largely employed when these roofs are built as extensions or for sheds.

Flat vs Pitched Roof

Any roof with a peak can be referred to as a pitched roof. These types of roofs are more common and slope downward from the peak position. Flat roofs, too, have a slightly sloping angle to ensure water moves toward the gutters and doesn’t collect there. But which one should you go for? Here are a few points worth considering:

  1. Aesthetics

What look do you want for your home? Do you want a minimalist, modern aesthetic for your house or are you more of a traditional kind of person in architecture? For those who prefer a clean and sleek look for their house, the flat roofs are a no-brainer, but for those who prefer a more classic and craftier look, the pitched roofs are a perfect choice.

  1. Cost

Since flat roofs are structurally basic, they have a lesser upfront installation cost compared to pitched ones that require more materials as well as more time to be built.

  1. Maintenance

This is where things get a little tricky. We just saw that the flat roofs cost less than their pitched counterparts, but when it comes to maintenance, the latter type comes out to be superior. It is because pitched roofs offer protection against snow, rain, and winds. Their design also decreases the chances of any leakage, keeping you tension-free.

  1. Lifespan

This should be a no-brainer, as pitched roofs have a much longer lifespan than flat ones. Why? Because of their design, because of their superior resistance to climactic challenges, and more.

So, if you’re looking for a modern aesthetic with a lower upfront installation cost, flat roofs are perfect for you. But if you prefer a slightly classic look with fewer maintenance costs and a longer lifespan, pitched roofs would do you a world of good!

What type of Roof should you Choose?

Depending on your preferences in style and budget alongside other specific requirements, you can easily choose a roof that suits your taste. Make sure that you consider all the pros and cons of the different types before finalizing one. 

Written by Amritesh Mukherjee

Part-time freelance writer, full-time chemistry graduate student, Amritesh loves everything books. Gift him a book if you chance upon him, and he'll love you forever.

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