How Much Does It Cost to Install a Standing Seam Metal Roof?

Marwa Hasan
Written by Marwa Hasan
Reviewed by Ami Feller
Updated May 17, 2022
A house with a standing seam metal roof
Photo: U. J. Alexander / Adobe Stock

The cost to install a standing seam metal roof can be anywhere between $8,500 and $44,200

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Standing seam metal roofs are soaring in popularity with homeowners when compared to other types of roofing because it’s lightweight, durable, and easy to maintain. Also known as “raised” or “vertical seam,” it features pleated panels about 12 to 19 inches wide that connect on a vertical seam, giving standing seam metal roofing its distinct look.

Homeowners typically pay between $13,600 to $20,400 to install a standing seam metal roof, with an average of $17,000.

How Much Does It Cost to Install a Standing Seam Metal Roof by Square Foot?

You can pay as little as $8,500 or as much as $44,200 to install a standing seam metal roof, at $5 to $26 per square foot. This means you will pay between $500 and $2,600 per 100-foot square of roof.

The labor cost to replace and install a roof runs between $2 to $6 per square foot. The process typically includes the following tasks:

  • Removing the shingles or panels, flashings, and underlayment

  • Inspecting decking and making any needed repairs

  • Placing a new underlayment

  • Installing the trim

  • Position metal panels

  • Attaching panels based on snap-lock or seaming

  • Installing flashings

  • Disposing of old material

How Much Does It Cost to Install a Standing Seam Metal Roof Yourself?

While you may save $3,400 to $10,200 on labor if you decide to install a standing seam metal roof yourself, this is not a job to DIY. If you install a roof yourself, you can risk your safety or be voiding manufacturing warranties. Also, many roofing contractors use a brake, and essentially manufacture the roof panels on site. This is not generally a tool that you can rent and requires technical skills to use. This is why most homeowners choose to hire a local metal roofing company to install a standing seam roof.

How Much Does It Cost to Install a Standing Seam Metal Roof by Material?

The total price depends mainly on the type of metal you choose for your standing seam roof, which can range from $3 to $20 per square foot (or $8 per square foot on average). Steel and aluminum are the most popular because of their lower prices and color availability, while zinc or copper are more durable.

Standing Seam Steel Roofing

Steel costs an average of $3 to $4.50 per square foot, depending on the metal’s thickness. Steel is the most affordable choice, has a longer life span, and is more fire-resistant than other materials.

Standing Seam Aluminum

The cost runs between $9 to $20 per square foot, depending on the thickness. Aluminum is a good choice if you want a lightweight material. It also cools down quickly and is less likely to rust.

Standing Seam Zinc

The price of standing seam zinc is between $4 to $15 per square foot. Zinc is a low-maintenance material and it naturally resists corrosion.

Standing Seam Copper

The price of seam copper roofing is between $8 and $14 per square foot. Copper is a long-lasting material and can last up to 50 years. It can also develop a classic green patina over time.

What Factors Influence the Cost to Install a Standing Seam Metal Roof?

Detail of a standing seam metal roof
Photo: Natalie Schorr / Adobe Stock

While the total cost of installing a standing seam metal roof runs between $13,600 to $20,400, many factors influence the final price.

Material

The material of the metal roofing makes a huge difference in the final cost. Steel roofing can cost as little as $3 per square foot, while aluminum can cost as high as $20 per square foot.

Design

There is a big difference between interlocking steel panels or overlapping panels when it comes to cost. Consult a local roofing professional to help you make the right choice for your project.

Labor Cost

To replace and install a roof, expect to pay between $2 to $6 per square foot, or $3,400 to $10,200 for labor. The contractor you hire can make or break your investment. Do your research to find the right roofing contractor to ensure quality work of the metal roofing job.

Color

Most metal manufacturers produce pre-painted metal. The roofers might need to touch up nicks and scratches after installation, but they won't have to paint the roof after it's installed—unless you want them too.

Unless you have a copper roof, you can paint your metal with a wide selection of colors and finishes. Painting a metal roof enhances the curb appeal and keeps the roof in good condition against harsh elements.

Be sure to check with your roofer if painting is included in the final price or if you have to pay extra to paint your metal roof.

Permits

A roofing permit is required when installing a new metal roof. When the installation is done, an inspector should come to look at the work. 

A permit can cost between $400 to $1,000 for a roof that is up to 2,000 square feet. Be sure that the roofing company you choose is licensed and insured.

FAQs About Installing a Standing Seam Metal Roof

What are the pros and cons of installing a standing seam metal roof?

You should be aware of the pros and cons of the metal roof before deciding if this is the right choice for your home.

Here are some pros:

  • Durable: Doesn't bend or crack and can last for 40 to 100+ years

  • Requires almost no maintenance: Won't be affected by termites, rot, or mildew

  • Energy-efficient: It provides great insulation for colder climates and reflects sunlight, keeping energy costs down

But there are cons to consider, too:

  • Complex installation and repairs: Need to be handled by a professional

  • Upfront cost: Higher compared to other roofing materials, many homeowners consider it a good investment

  • Noisy: Especially during rain, wind, and hail. Extreme weather conditions can affect the lifespan of the roof

Which is better: a metal roof or shingles?

When deciding between a metal roof and asphalt shingles, you should compare both side-by-side to ensure you have the best choice for your home.

Asphalt shingles are among the most popular shingles because of their affordable prices, while metal roofing is more expensive upfront. They usually last between 20 and 50 years, depending on the manufacturer, and are versatile, whereas a metal roof will last 40 to 100 years or more. Standing seam metal roofs require little to no maintenance, but if you install a screw down metal roof where the fasteners are exposed, the gaskets on the fasteners will dry rot and need to be replaced. Generally screw down metal roofs need to be re-screwed every 15 to 20 years.

Metal roofs are energy-efficient and have longer warranties, while asphalt shingles are less durable than most. They tend to lose color and get damaged over time, plus they tend to absorb heat from the sun.

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