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How Much Does a Standing Seam Metal Roof Cost?

Average National Cost
? All cost data throughout this article are collected using the RSMeans construction materials database.
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$31,000 – $36,300

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Updated On

April 21, 2024

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A standing seam roof is a unique type of metal roofing system that uses special panels with raised seams that cover exposed fasteners. The metal roofing panels feature a field-locking system to create a water-tight barrier, protecting the underlayment and other internal parts of the roof. As a result, standing seam roofs last longer and are more durable than other types of metal roofs.

While standing seam roofs are highly efficient, they’re much more expensive than other roof options. Need help deciding if a standing seam metal roof is the right choice to replace your old roof? I’ll run through general standing seam metal roof costs, explain why they’re so expensive, and offer advice on how you can find the best roofing company for your installation.

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Asphalt Roof Installation
In general, you can expect to pay between $6,600 and $19,500 and is the most popular roofing choice for most homeowners.
Metal Roof Installation
In general, you can expect to pay between $8,000 and $20,000 but last more than twice as long as asphalt shingles on average.
Slate Roof Installation
In general, you can expect to pay between $20,000 and $30,000 but can last over 100 years due to it’s superior durability.

What Is the Cost of a Standing Seam Metal Roof?

Standing seam metal roofs are one of the most expensive types of roofs you can get, costing $10 to more than $30 per square foot. In total, for an average 2,000-square-foot roof, you can expect to pay anywhere from $22,000 to more than $40,000. 

The primary reason for the wide range in price is due to material costs: Aluminum and steel roofs cost between $10 and $15 per square foot, while copper and zinc cost around $18 to more than $30 per square foot

Here’s a more detailed cost breakdown of standing seam metal roofs

Cost RangeCost Per Square FootAverage Cost Per Project
Low-end Cost Range$10–$12$20,000–$24,00
National Average Cost Range$15.50–$18.15$31,000–$36,300
High-end Cost Range$22.75–$34.10$45,500–$68,200

We get cost data from RSMeans, a project estimator for contractors and home improvement experts. The average costs listed in this article include materials and labor fees.

What Does Standing Seam Metal Roof Cost by Type?

When hiring a roofing company to install a standing seam roof, you can choose between several different materials. Here is a breakdown of the costs of each material for a standing seam roof, including baseline price, labor, and total project installation costs (for a roof of 2,000 square feet.)

Material TypeMaterial Cost Per Square FootLabor CostTotal Project Cost (for a 2,000 Square Foot Roof) 
Aluminum Panels$6–$8$4.60–$5.15$21,200–$26,300
Galvanized or Galvalume Steel panels $3.75–$7.50$4.30–$4.95$16,100–$24,900
Zinc Panels$8.35–$10.35$7.15–$7.80$31,000–$36,200
Copper Panels$27.50–$31.00$6.60–$7.15$68,200–$76,300

Aluminum standing seam roofs are one of the most cost-efficient options, making them a popular choice for homeowners. Aluminum is lightweight, easy to install, and highly corrosion-resistant, making it an ideal choice for metal roofing. Additionally, homeowners can paint aluminum standing seam roofs to match the look and aesthetic of their home. The only major downside of aluminum is that it isn’t as impact resistant as other options, such as steel or copper. 

Galvalume, or galvanized steel, combines steel’s sturdy durability with zinc’s long-lasting corrosion resistance. These roofs use a sheet of steel coated with a thin outer layer of zinc for better durability and water resistance. Galvalume is one of the most common types of standing seam metal roofs and is typically the least expensive. While affordable and resistant to impacts, the zinc coating can eventually wear down, leading to rust and other problems. 

Zinc is a high-end roofing material that can last up to 100 years. Resistant to both physical damage and corrosion, zinc is one of the most efficient roofing materials on the market. Zinc is also 100% eco-friendly and easily recyclable, making it a great choice for environmentally conscious homeowners. 

However, zinc has some downsides. As zinc ages, it develops patina, or fades. The time it takes for zinc to develop patina is often inconsistent. Slight differences in the metal’s composition can affect its color as it ages, so there’s no guarantee it will have the expected look when it does change. Additionally, zinc can be expensive. Due to the metal’s desirable qualities and relative scarcity, it’s one of the pricier options. 

As far as roofing materials go, copper is considered the cream of the crop. It’s durable, high-quality, aesthetically beautiful, energy-efficient, low maintenance, and has a long life span. While copper has a lot of benefits, you can’t overlook its high cost — it’s the most expensive metal roofing material available. Priced at a minimum of $30 per square foot, copper often falls outside of many homeowners’ budgets.

What Does Standing Seam Metal Roof Cost by Square Footage?

When pricing the cost for a new roofing project, your first major factor is always material, but right behind that is square footage. The larger your roof, the more materials and labor hours are needed to install it. 

A large roof can reach extremely high installation prices, even when using a lower-cost material like steel. The following table details out the most common roof sizes to demonstrate how much the square footage of your roof affects the price of your final bill. 

Roof SizeTypical Price RangeAverage Cost
1,000 square feet$15,500–$18,150$16,825
1,500 square feet$23,250–$36,300$29,775
2,000 square feet$31,000–$36,300$33,650
2,500 square feet$38,750–$45,375$42,063
3,000 square feet$46,500–$54,450$50,475
3,500 square feet$54,250–$63,525$58,888
4,000 square feet$62,000–$72,600$67,300

How Much Does Standing Seam Metal Roof Cost by the Square?

While metal roof installations should always be handled by a trained professional, there are occasions when a homeowner may need to purchase raw roofing materials. Homeowners should purchase roofing materials directly from a supplier, whether they’re for a minor repair or small-scale installation (like putting on a shed roof).

When purchasing roofing materials from a manufacturer, they’re typically sold in squares or bundles. A square contains enough materials for 100 square feet of work, and a bundle is roughly one-third of a square.

Here is how much you can expect to pay for raw roofing materials in both squares and bundles:

Material TypePrice Per SquarePrice Per BundlePrice Per 10 SquaresPrice Per 10 Bundles
Aluminum $600–$800$200–$267$6,000–$8,000$2,000–$2,670
Galvalume or Galvanized Steel$375–$750$125–$250$3,750–$7,500$1,250–$2,500

Which Factors Impact How Much a Standing Seam Metal Roof Costs?

Besides the material type and roof size, numerous other cost factors play a part in the price of your standing seam metal roof installation. Roof slopes, accessories, additional services, and the metal gauge can all affect the price. Below, I’ll explain each of these factors, along with how they can affect the cost of your project.

Every standing seam panel uses one of two locking mechanisms: a snap lock or a mechanical lock. As their name suggests, snap lock panels snap together without adhesives or fasteners. They’re cheaper and easier to install but aren’t as long-lasting and can only fit on roofs with a certain pitch.

On the other hand, mechanical locks use a special locking mechanism to hold the panels together. This mechanism creates a stronger bond and seal than snap locks, making them more resistant to extreme weather and other damage. However, they’re also more expensive and require a special tool to install them.

Unless your existing roof is flat, it has one or more slopes incorporated into its design. Each slope in a roof adds to its total size, meaning you can’t use the home’s base square footage to measure the roof. 

You’ll need to do some math to find your roof’s true size. Start by understanding just how a roof’s pitch is calculated. A roof pitch is measured by its “rise over run” number, which is how many inches the roof rises for every foot it extends (runs). 

For example, a slope that rises by four inches per foot will have a pitch of 4:12. The higher this number (or pitch), the more area (square footage) your roof has and the more expensive the installation will be. Once you have your roof’s pitch number, you can plug your information into a roofing calculator to get your roof’s exact measurements. 

Here’s a table that shows how much pitch can affect the total cost of a project:

Base Square Footage of HomeRoof PitchRoof’s True Area in Square FeetStanding Seam Metal Roof Installation Cost

For these calculations, I assumed the home had one overhanging eave.

When signing up for a roof installation, many homeowners opt to have additional work done simultaneously. Jobs like adding skylights, installing new gutters and good gutter guards for metal roofs, or replacing damaged roof structures are all common additional requests. Since you’re hiring a roofing contractor for a replacement, you can save time by having them take care of these minor jobs simultaneously instead of hiring another roofer down the line. 

Below are some of the most commonly requested additional services and installations, along with the national average price for each:

  • Repairing or replacing flashing: $10 to $27 per linear foot
  • Roof sealing: $1.00 to $4.00 per square foot
  • Gutter repair or replacement: $1,000 to $7,000
  • Adding a skylight: $900 to $2,500
  • Permits: Permits for a new roof can cost between $100 to more than $1,000

A roof’s gauge represents its thickness. A metal roof with a lower number (gauge) is thicker; for example, 22-gauge steel is thicker than 24-gauge steel. When selecting standing seam metal panels, thicker metal is more expensive but offers more protection and lasts longer. Less expensive materials, like steel, won’t have a hefty price difference between gauges, but for more expensive materials, like zinc, gauges can significantly impact the price. 

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What Are the Benefits of Investing in a Standing Seam Metal Roof?

While standing seam metal roofs are more expensive than traditional asphalt shingles, they carry several important benefits. To start, they typically last much longer than traditional roofs. A standard asphalt roof will last between 15 to 20 years, but the average standing seam roof lasts three to four times that. Additionally, they’re more resistant to heat, cold, and corrosion than other roofing materials. 

Standing seam metal roofs have further advantages over conventional roofs, including: 

  • An average return on investment (ROI) of 80% to 90%.
  • Improved fire resistance
  • Easier solar panel installation
  • More eco-friendly 
  • Potentially lower insurance rates 
  • Require less roof repair

Read also: Ways to Install Roof Shingles

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Professional Vs. DIY Standing Seam Metal Roof Cost

Installing a roof yourself is cheaper than hiring a professional, as it bypasses service and labor costs. However, installing a kind of roof is difficult and beyond most homeowners’ skill sets. If a roof isn’t installed properly, it can lead to structural faults, like gaps that allow water or pests inside your home. These small installation problems can eventually damage other home systems, resulting in costly repair work that negates any savings you had with the DIY installation.

You won’t save as much money on DIY installation of standing seam metal roofs as you might assume. Standing seam roofs require specialized tools. Most homeowners don’t possess such tools, meaning you’d have to spend additional money purchasing them. 

For example, one tool, a sheet metal brake, is used to make precise bends in sheet metal. Sheet metal brakes are needed to ensure your metal panels fit correctly around roof structures. Brakes cost anywhere from $500 to over $7,000, making them a hefty upfront barrier for DIY roof work. 

Hiring a Professional for Standing Seam Metal Roof Installation

Finding the right roofing contractor can be intimidating, especially if you’re not used to hiring service professionals. You can follow these simple steps to find a reliable roofer for your next project:

  1. Find local experts near you: Search for local roof installation companies. 
  2. Do some research on their credentials: Check each company’s background, customer reviews, history of complaints, and previous work through websites like the Better Business Bureau, Google My Business, and Yelp. 
  3. Get a few different quotes: Once you have a few promising options, schedule an appointment for a free quote with each one. 
  4. Consult them about their recommendations: During the quote process, ask each technician their thoughts on your project and any potential issues they foresee. 
  5. Compare quotes to find the best choice: Once you have a few quotes from different companies, compare their prices, services, and quality to find the best deal for the lowest cost. 
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Read also: What Architectural Shingle Entails

So, Is a Standing Seam Metal Roof Worth the Cost?

Overall, standing seam roofs are excellent investments. They provide better protection than other types of roofing materials and can last up to four times longer than standard asphalt shingles. Standing seam roofs also deliver an outstanding ROI if you decide to sell your home. 

While expensive, these roofs compensate for their steep initial costs with long-lasting benefits.

If you factor in the money you’ll save on repairs and roof replacements over the years, the price gap between an asphalt shingle roof and a standing seam roof becomes significantly smaller. If you have the cash on hand and can afford to plan for the long run, a standing seam roof is an excellent choice for your home. We recommend you read our article to learn roof repair and maintenance tips.

FAQs About Standing Seam Metal Roofs

What is a cheaper alternative to standing seam metal roofs?

One of the most cost-efficient options for metal roofs is corrugated panels. These roofing panels cost roughly as much as standing seam metal roofs.

Are standing seams worth the extra cost?

Yes, standing seam metal roofs might be more expensive than traditional asphalt shingles, but their erosion resistance, increased longevity, durability, and curb appeal make up for it.

Why are standing seam roofs more expensive?

Standing seam metal roofs are expensive due to their difficult installation process, pricier materials, and the special skills required to install them.

Editorial Contributors
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Sam Wasson

Staff Writer

Sam Wasson graduated from the University of Utah with a degree in Film and Media Arts with an Emphasis in Entertainment Arts and Engineering. Sam brings over four years of content writing and media production experience to the Today’s Homeowner content team. He specializes in the pest control, landscaping, and moving categories. Sam aims to answer homeowners’ difficult questions by providing well-researched, accurate, transparent, and entertaining content to Today’s Homeowner readers.

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Lora Novak

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Lora Novak meticulously proofreads and edits all commercial content for Today’s Homeowner to guarantee that it contains the most up-to-date information. Lora brings over 12 years of writing, editing, and digital marketing expertise. She’s worked on thousands of articles related to heating, air conditioning, ventilation, roofing, plumbing, lawn/garden, pest control, insurance, and other general homeownership topics.

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