Different Types of Roof Designs in Australia

You can find many roof types, each with a unique architectural style. Roofs are your home’s most essential components that enhance the building’s character and style. Therefore, when building a new roof or replacing the existing one, you will want to choose the best roofing design for your home. 

Do you know that specific roof designs and styles are better suited to varied climatic conditions? 

Australia experiences adverse weather conditions, with climates varying from coast to coast. You can find a mix of architectural styles with abundant roof designs throughout the country.

Working with professional reroofing contractors can help you choose the best roof designs and the most suitable materials depending on the roof type and personal preferences. 

In this post, you will learn about different types of roof designs and materials best suited for Australian homes.                            

Historical Architectural Styles in Australia        

Australia has a rich history of roofing trends emerging from period to period. The following are a few historical roofing trends that might influence your choice of roof designs:

Victorian homes

British housing styles significantly influenced Australian architects in the 19th century; thus, Victorian homes were popular during this period.        

Workers cottage

Workers cottages were commonly built in the 19th century when inner-city suburbs, including Brisbane’s West End and Nundah, were home to warehouses, timber yards, wool stores, manufacturing plants, and breweries.


The simple structures, made from tin and timber, the Queenslanders were first built in the mid-19th century. These architectural-style homes were built in the areas with subtropical climate. 

Architects incorporated features like a timber frame, elevated structure, pitched roof, and expansive wrap-around verandah to accommodate the Australian lifestyle of hot, humid summers and laid-back indoor and outdoor living. 

Modern homes

Australians considered modernist homes radical when they were first built in the early 20th century, but today, you can find contemporary box-like houses in the suburbs and neighbourhoods. 

Modern homes feature flat or skillion roofs, large glass panes or windows, and reinforced concrete frames.

What are the Different Types of Roofs in Australia? 

Throughout Australia, you can find different types of roofs, varying according to climatic conditions in different areas. Below discussed are some common types of roofs you might encounter in the country:

Flat roof

Flat roofs have smaller surface areas and, thus, will use fewer roofing materials to cover them. 

Therefore, a flat roof is the best option when planning to install a budget-friendly new roof Melbourne. Installing fewer roofing materials will take shorter construction time, reducing labour costs. 

You should know that while these roofs appear flat, they have some pitch for water runoff. 

Moreover, flat roofs are easier to construct, safer to stand on top, and generally more accessible. 

You can commonly see a flat roof on apartment blocks, modern houses, and high-rise buildings.

Skillion roof

Skillion roofs are similar to flat roofs, but the former rooftops have more obvious pitched planes for water and debris runoff than the latter. 

This roof usually is not attached to another roof surface and, thus, is a single-sloping roof surface. Simply put, a skillion roof is used for a smaller addition attached to the existing rooftop. 

These roofs are ideal for multi-level homes, adding a touch of style by making your house look more architecturally complex. Skillion roofs can be easily maintained and cleaned compared to flat roofs because of the visible significant pitch facilitating water and debris runoff.

Butterfly roof

These roofs consist of two skillion roofs angled against one another with a box gutter in the middle to ensure water runoff. 

Butterfly roofs need box gutter detailing, high engineering requirements, and professional installation. Therefore, it will be best to work with highly skilled reroofing contractors.  

A butterfly roof can significantly enhance the style quotient of your home, but it is expensive to install and maintain. The roof shape will resemble the butterfly’s wingspan and consist of two planes slanting toward each other. 

You will not have to install a traditional gutter and downspout system by installing a butterfly roof. The rainwater will drain into the central trough, where it can be drained away or harvested. 

Curved roof                                        

Although you can rarely find curved roofs in Australia, they do exist. You can see them in newly built houses around coastal areas. 

Building and maintaining a curved rooftop is very expensive because of its shape. Therefore, you will rarely see it in residential homes. 

With the right reroofing contractors, you can get a cost-effective and easy roof replacement or new roof installation. 

Hipped roof

A hipped roof consists of three, four, or more pitched planes, depending on the house’s shape, and all planes slope downwards from a ridge at the top. 

This roof is almost triangular but doesn’t have an exact point. 

When considering installing a new roof in Melbourne, many homeowners opt for a hipped roof design as it offers shady eaves and great strength, making them suitable for high wind-rated areas.

Gabled roof

Gabled roofs are triangular and connect at a top point. This construction offers a great space for an attic, making this roof design ideal for family homes. 

Also referred to as a peaked roof, gabled roofs are often tiled. You can use terracotta or concrete tiles for constructing a sturdy, durable gabled roof. These tiled roofs are cost-effective and relatively easy to clean and maintain. 

Concluding Words

Remember that no roof design is guaranteed to be a suitable option for your Australian home. When considering installing a new roof Melbourne, choosing a specific roof design, style, or material depends on multiple factors. 

The area you live in and its climatic conditions can often affect the best type and style of roof and materials you can use. Additionally, you also need to consider the cost. 

Now that the climate in Australia varies drastically, you must consider the weather where you live to choose the best roof design and type. Connect with the best roofing contractors to find the ideal roofing style and material for your home.

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