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Classic vs. Luxury: Which Shingles are Right for Your Home?

Published on Wednesday June 14, 2017

luxury shingles

A roof is not always just a roof. For many homeowners, a roof is the cherry on top of their perfect home, showcasing their tastes and personalities to everyone who passes by. So when aesthetics are a high priority, it’s often worth spending a little extra money to get your roof just right.

Classic shingles 

wood shingles

Classic shingles are also referred to as architectural shingles, laminate shingles or dimensional shingles. These really add that extra, architectural “oomph” to your home’s exterior and come in many styles, but they often come with a hefty price tag to match.


Cedar shingles are a decent option if you’re going for a specific home style. These shake-style roofs are commonly found on Cape Cod, colonial and other historically-styled homes.

Cedar shakes tend to last a while, too. The Cedar Shake & Shingles Bureau estimates that the average lifespan of cedar shakes and shingles is 30-40 years, but that can depend on a number of factors from typical climate to installation to storms.

Even if the shingle itself lasts that long, however, that doesn’t mean they’ll retain their high-end appearance.

Cedar as a roofing material is very susceptible to damage. Wood rots and burns easily, so you need to have cedar shakes specifically treated and installed in order to get them as water- and fire-resistant as possible, but even then they’re still at risk of damage.

Plus, compared to the run-of-the-mill asphalt shingle, cedar shakes are up to six times more expensive not always worth the upkeep costs and energy.


Slate is hands down the most expensive roofing material on the market. It’s ten times more expensive than the average asphalt shingle as it pairs well in Gothic, Tudor, Chateau or other expensively styled, historic-looking homes.

Since slate is stone, it’s completely fire resistant and, depending on its mining location, can last from 60-200 years.

However, stone becomes more brittle and less impact-resistant as it ages, and where the material is mined can have a huge impact on how well it holds up over the years. To find a good quarry, you’ll have to do a lot of research and pay the high price to have it shipped to you.

Another issue that typically pops up with slate is slipping — when tiles slip out of place or fall out completely after installation. Low-quality manufacturing techniques, “over-nailing” and walking on the tiles during installation are the most common causes of slipping.  

Luxury shingles 

close up luxury shingles

Unlike slate and cedar shakes, which are made of 100% natural materials that chip and decay over time, LONG’s luxury shingles are made of an asphalt blend designed to mimic the look of expensive materials, but come in at a fraction of the cost. With LONG’s luxury shingles, you’ll get the same beautiful look of slate and cedar without all the upkeep, maintenance or worries at a price comparable to standard asphalt shingles.

Why are luxury shingles better than classic shingles? 

They’re more durable

Luxury shingles are made from a blend of asphalt and other materials that make them three times heavier than their natural counterparts, meaning they can stand up stronger to high winds, hurricanes, snow storms and hail. Since they’re more durable, they keep their shape and color longer than classic shingles, allowing your roof to look brand new years and years down the line.

They’re more affordable 

Since they’re made of natural materials, slate and cedar roofs are expensive. Slate costs up to ten times that of a traditional shingle, but you lose out on the high-end look that you want.

Luxury shingles are the perfect solution — since they’re artificial, they’re far cheaper than their natural counterparts and can be designed to look just as stunning as the real deal.

They’re just as good looking

The multi-dimensional texture of luxury shingles creates shadows and depths that mimic the look of classic cedar and slate shakes. Plus, they come in a wider variety of colors and styles that can perfectly fit whatever style of home you have — modern, traditional or historic.

Due to their triple-laminate design, they’re thicker than the real shakes, giving them a more deluxe appearance. Many homeowners actually prefer the look of luxury shingles to that of the natural cedar and slate.

A beautiful look that stands the test of time

If you’re in the market for a classic aesthetic but don’t want to pay the price, look no further than Long Roofing. We’re committed to offering the best products available to give you the roof of your dreams. Visit us online to request a quote and schedule an in-home consultation today.

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**Excludes labor. Subject to credit approval.

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