Pitched Roof vs Flat Roof – Which is Best?

Your roof is what’s keeping the classic British weather out. Come rain or shine, it will protect you and provide a safe, warm place to live. 

If you’re constructing a new home or garage – or even if you’re replacing your existing roof – you always have options when it comes to design. The two main styles are pitched roofs and flat roofs – both very common and both with their pros and cons.

To help you decide which is best, we’re going to explore both styles and break down what makes them a good choice, as well as what might hold them back. 


Tile Roofs

Pitched Roofs

Pitched roofs are essentially those that are at an angle, creating slopes that eventually meet at an apex. They’re commonly found on residential homes and are especially popular for developers producing new-build homes.


  • Longevity – A pitched roof, if made from quality materials and professionally installed, can last anywhere between 60 to 100 years. Again, your choice of material and the weather it’s exposed to will have a bearing, but that’s a great return on the investment.
  • Aesthetically pleasing – Many people simply prefer the look of a pitched roof, giving it the classic look of a home. It’s especially appealing if tiled with an on-trend material such as slate.
  • Avoids water damage – The sloped nature of this roof means that no matter how much it rains, the water will never pool. Keep your gutters in good condition and you’ll have very few water issues to contend with – if any.
  • More room for conversion – When looking to purchase a home, people are often looking for the potential to expand. With a pitched roof, you get practical loft space that could be ripe for conversion one day.


  • Installation time – With greater benefits comes a longer installation time. Greater consideration has to be given to whether the building can take the weight of a pitched roof, but it’s also a slightly more complex construction process compared to a flat roof.
  • Cost – More materials and more time required by contractors on site means a higher price, though as mentioned in the ‘pros’ section, you get a longer lifespan for the investment.
  • Planning permission – Depending on where you are intending to install a pitched roof, you could be subject to planning permission restrictions in terms of height. This is usually a factor when creating an extension or garage.


Flat roof

Flat Roofs

Pretty much as you’d expect, a flat roof is a horizontal roof usually constructed with green mineral felt, GRP fibreglass or a three-layer, high-performance felt system. They’re more commonly found on commercial buildings but are also common on residential properties, often a popular choice for garages.


  • Quicker to construct – Compared to traditional pitched roofs, a flat roof is much quicker to install since they’re simpler and sometimes a more compact solution.
  • Cheaper – Smaller and quicker to build means that you can keep costs down, particularly when it comes to the cost of site labour.
  • Compact – When space is at a premium, you need a solution that puts a roof over your head without the planning permission headaches. This is often ideal for garages and extensions for homes where rules are strict.


  • Lack of longevity – When built with quality materials, a flat roof can last for around 20 to 30 years, but this is still a lot less longevity than a pitched roof.
  • Maintenance – Related to the previous point, the longevity you get from a flat roof will be determined by how well maintained the roof is. You’ll need to check regularly for leaks and to ensure materials haven’t failed to the point where standing water accumulates.


Here at Roofer UK, it doesn’t matter what type of roof you want – we’re experts when it comes to both types of roofing. We can help discuss your options, helping you to find the right roofing style to match your taste, budget and timeline. We also offer a 10-year guarantee on all our new roofs, giving you peace of mind when you choose us as your dedicated roofing contractor.

Plus, if you require maintenance or emergency repairs for any existing flat or pitched roof, we’re on hand throughout London, Watford, Hampstead, Highgate and the surrounding areas.

Call today to discuss your pitched or flat roofing installation and maintenance requirements with our professional team.