For commercial building owners and managers, choosing the right commercial roof is a critical decision. An experienced commercial roofer will consider all factors and make a confident and informed recommendation based on your building’s specific needs. Consider this list of factors for selecting a new roof for your commercial building.

Existing Roofing And Physical Makeup

The type of roof, any existing structures it houses, protrusions, and accessibility requirements should all be taken into account. Some commercial roofing systems can be applied directly on top of an existing roof, but reroofing isn’t always possible. Ideally, no one should really be walking around on a commercial roof except for roofing professionals, but it’s important to take foot traffic into consideration for both the safety of your employees as well as your roof. How often your roof will need to be accessed outside of professional maintenance is an important factor to consider when choosing a commercial roofing system.

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Location, Immediate Surroundings, And Climate

A building’s physical location is another significant factor in choosing the right type of roof. Local building codes, nearby hazards like overhanging trees or wildlife, and extreme weather expected for that climate should all be taken into consideration. Buildings in different climates may require different types of roofs. Buildings that see a lot of snow and hail might require the durability of a metal roof, while buildings in a desert climate would need the energy efficiency of a reflective system, and buildings in climates with both extremes may benefit from a flexible material like EPDM that can easily adapt to temperature fluctuations.

The Type of Business Housed Within

Consider the type of business conducted within your building. A storage warehouse will have vastly different heating and cooling needs than a retail clothing store. In the case of a retail store, where customers are expecting a moderate and comfortable temperature, an energy-efficient system may be worth the higher upfront cost. A warehouse that stores non-temperature-sensitive inventory may opt for a less energy-efficient but more affordable roofing system. Buildings housing restaurants or manufacturers require a roofing system that can accommodate ventilation and exhaust systems.

Environmental Impact

The environmental impact of commercial roofing systems is another important factor to take into consideration. Whether a system is made from recycled material, can be recycled at the end of its life, is highly reflective, or can accommodate additional insulation or photovoltaic panels are all “green” features commercial building owners may want to watch for. Beyond the obvious energy efficiency (and subsequently lower utility costs) these features provide, certifications and may offer significant incentives for building owners to “go green” for their new roofs.

Your Budget

It’s important to remember that your roof is an investment and you need to consider more than the initial price tag to truly understand its value. Roofing materials that are less expensive upfront often come with a shorter lifespan, requiring repairs or even complete replacement much sooner than materials that are more expensive to start with. Roofing systems with added benefits like the ability to be recoated, extreme energy efficiency, or stellar warranties, could end up paying for themselves when you compare your initial investment to what you will save over time.

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Future Building Plans

The longevity of different roofing systems is an important factor to consider, especially in relation to your future plans. With proper care and maintenance, different commercial roofs can offer life spans ranging from 10 years up to 50 or more. A roofing system with a long life expectancy is great for clients who plan to own commercial buildings for decades. Meanwhile, an owner who is planning to sell their property in the near future may not want to invest in a longer-lasting but more expensive system.


Now you’re all set to have an informed and knowledgeable discussion with your commercial roofing professional about selecting the best roofing system for your commercial building. If your building happens to be in West Palm Beach or one of its surrounding areas, contact Neal Roofing & Waterproofing in West Palm Beach today. We’d be happy to assess your roof and share our expert roofing recommendation!