Too often we think of our home’s roof as only a structural element, when, in fact, choosing roofing that’s also stylish and unique is a great opportunity to make our house stand out from others in the neighborhood. On average, a roof accounts for 40% of the home’s exterior appearance. So choosing the perfect roof color is vitally important in building a distinctive and attractive dream home.
This week, and next week, we’ll hear about Owens Corning Roofing. Now, you probably know Owens Corning’s insulation by its signature pink color. But they also produce other products for the home, including roofing. Sue Burkett will tell us about Owens Corning roof shingles, which come in many beautiful hues that are tasteful, but far from ordinary.
Let’s get right to it. Here’s the first part of my interview with Sue Burkett, Strategic Marketing Leader for Owens Corning.
The following is a paraphrase of our interview (hit "play" on the podcast player above to actually listen to the interview).
Michelle: Most people think that a roof is a roof, but there's more to it than that, right?
Sue: Yes. Although a roof is about performance and value, your roof is also a design consideration. And many homeowners want help with choosing the right color and design for their roof.
Michelle: Historically, roofing has not been viewed as a design element. How does the roof contribute to a home’s exterior curb appeal?
Sue: The roof can be a very big component of the exterior face of your house. The roof can be 40-50% of what you see when you drive by a house. When it's time to pick a new roof and its color, you have to consider everything that it's going with (other exterior components) and the home's environment.
Michelle: Color is one of the easiest ways to express personal style. How is Owens Corning Roofing getting homeowners to think about the roof as an opportunity for color?
Sue: Homeowners traditionally tend to move to "safe" choices when it comes to a roof, often because they don't know what other options are available to them. It's important that homeowners do their homework before choosing their roof. They can use tools like Owens Corning's visualizer tool, Design Eye Q, that allows you to upload a photo of a house, and drag various roofing products and colors onto the image to "try them on." This helps homeowners figure out what roof color they like best. Owens Corning has a wide range of colors from bold to subdued. Homeowners should do their homework and see what's available so that they won't be simply talked into a safe, easy choice.
Michelle: Can style and roof color affect the perceived value of a home, especially for resale?
Sue: Absolutely. Curb appeal is very important. Getting potential buyers to at least stop at a house for sale and say "yes, I want to go inside that one" is a big part of the battle.
Research shows that a home with a well-put-together exterior is worth more. And if you have a roof with a "safe" color, that looks like everybody else's house on your street, your house won't stand out when it's time for resale.
Michelle: Has the world of celebrity designers embraced the design aspect of roofing?
Sue: There are many DIY and design shows that pay attention the design of the exterior of the home, and the roof is a big part of that. Specifically, Karen and Mina of HGTV's Good Bones work with Owens Corning Roofing to spread the word that the color of a roof is an important design element.
Michelle: Why don’t contractors, who sell and install the roof, do a better job helping homeowners through the process?
Sue: Many contractors are male and they are less interested in choosing the perfect color and more interested in giving you the "safe" roof choices that everybody else tends to choose. They are usually more comfortable as installers, than as designers. Plus contractors typically work with time constraints, and choosing the right color takes a little bit of time. Owens Corning wants to educate homeowners that there are some things that they can do to choose the right roof color before the contractor even comes into the picture-- the visualizing tool, style boards, etc.
Michelle: What are some resources Owens Corning Roofing has developed to help homeowners coordinate their home’s roof with other exterior elements?
Sue: Owens Corning design inspiration style boards help you decide what vibe you might like best and what roof colors coordinate with the rest of your house and express that vibe. You'll also find the Shingle Color of the Year.
Well, that’s it for this week. Take a look at www.owenscorning.com/roofing/shingles for inspirational photos of their roof shingles. The shingles come in various hues that will allow your roof to reflect your personal style as much as other parts of your house do.
Thank you for joining me today. And thanks to Sue Burkett for educating us. We’ll have the final part of the interview with her next week. So come on back for the next episode of Build Your House Yourself University.
Please remember that the purpose of this podcast is simply to educate and inform. It is not a substitute for professional advice. The information that you hear is based the only on the opinions, research and experiences of my guests and myself. That information might be incomplete, it’s subject to change and it may not apply to your project. In addition, building codes and requirements vary from region to region, so always consult a professional about specific recommendations for your home.