Maximizing Energy Efficiency: How Your Roofing Choices Can Save You Money


In our modern world, where rising energy costs are a burgeoning concern for many, embracing energy-efficient solutions becomes paramount. In this endeavor, it is critical to recognize the significant role played by one crucial component of any structure – the roof. A carefully made roofing decision can have a far-reaching impact on energy consumption. It is fundamental to recognize the importance of energy-efficient roofing practices, as they can translate into meaningful financial savings and environmental benefits over time. By making smart choices about your roofing materials and design, you can reduce heat loss in the winter, minimize heat gain in the summer, and ultimately lower your energy bills.


The Importance of Insulation and Ventilation



Your roof plays a crucial role in regulating the temperature inside your home. Proper insulation prevents heat from escaping during the colder months and blocks heat from entering during the warmer months. Additionally, adequate ventilation ensures that excess heat and moisture are released from your attic, preventing damage to your roof structure and improving air quality.


When adding insulation to the roof, it is important to guarantee that the roofing substrate is strong enough to support the additional weight of insulation. As such, it is a good idea to consider applying metal b-decking to the roof substrate, which provides shear support and increases the load bearing capacity of the roof.

Roofing Materials for Energy Efficiency



There is a wide range of roofing materials on the market, each with its own set of energy efficiency properties. Some of the most prevalent roofing options today include:


  • Asphalt shingles: Asphalt shingles are a popular and affordable roofing option. Dark-colored shingles absorb more heat from the sun, which can be beneficial in colder climates. However, it’s important to choose shingles with a high solar reflectance index (SRI) to minimize heat gain in warmer climates.
  • Metal roofing: Metal roofing, such as aluminum or steel, is highly reflective and durable. It effectively reflects sunlight, reducing heat absorption and keeping your home cooler. Its durable fabrication makes it unlikely that a metal roof will need any repairs or maintenance for at least 50 years, greatly reducing the lifetime cost of ownership.
  • Tile roofing: Clay or concrete tiles are excellent insulators and provide a natural cooling effect due to their thermal mass. They absorb heat during the day and release it slowly at night, keeping your home comfortable.
  • Slate roofing: Slate is a natural stone that offers superior insulation and durability. Its high thermal resistance prevents heat transfer, reducing energy consumption in both cold and warm climates.
  • Composite roofing: Fabricated from a combination of fiberglass, recycled paper products, and asphalt, composite tiles are a highly durable product that will not break down in the face of inclement weather. This helps prevent leaks and air transfer that could cause structural damage and HVAC overload.


When choosing a roofing option, it is essential to consider your local climate to arrive at the material that best maximizes energy efficiency for your region.


Roof Design and Energy Efficiency


Apart from materials, the design of your roof also plays a significant role in energy efficiency:


  • Roof slope: A steeper roof slope allows for better water drainage and reduces heat absorption. In warmer climates, a steeper slope can help reflect sunlight more effectively.
  • Roof color: As mentioned earlier, darker roof colors absorb more heat, while lighter colors reflect it. Choosing a lighter roof color can significantly reduce heat gain in warmer climates.
  • Overhangs and eaves: Overhangs and eaves provide shade for your home’s exterior walls, reducing heat absorption and keeping your home cooler in the summer. To guarantee proper attic ventilation, be sure to explore aluminum soffit colors to prevent unwanted moisture damage in these overhang areas.


On top of these design components, don’t neglect the gutters. Clogged and inefficient gutters can lead to damage that results in poor roof efficiency.


Other Energy-Saving Roofing Components


In addition to roofing materials and design, consider incorporating the following components into your roofing system for enhanced energy efficiency:


  • Radiant barriers: Radiant barriers are reflective materials installed under your roof deck. They reflect radiant heat from the sun, preventing it from entering your attic and home.
  • Solar shingles: Solar shingles incorporate photovoltaic cells that convert sunlight into electricity, reducing your reliance on the grid and saving you money on energy costs.
  • Green roofs: Green roofs involve planting vegetation on your roof, creating a natural insulation layer and reducing heat absorption. They also help improve air quality and reduce rainwater runoff.
  • Reflective coatings: Reflective coatings are a highly effective way to improve the energy efficiency of your roof. They are designed to reflect sunlight away from the roof’s surface, thus reducing heat absorption. In addition to lower HVAC consumption, they also increase the lifespan of your roof by reducing wear and tear caused by intense sunlight. Reflective coatings can be directly applied to existing roof surfaces, making them a cost-effective solution for enhancing energy efficiency without requiring a complete roof replacement.


Finally, do not overlook the importance of routine cleanings and regular roof inspections for ensuring the ongoing efficiency of your roof.

Benefits of an Energy-Efficient Roof


Investing in an energy-efficient roofing system offers numerous benefits, including:


  • Reduced energy bills: By reducing heat loss and gain, an energy-efficient roof can significantly lower your heating and cooling costs.
  • Increased home value: Energy-efficient homes are in high demand, and a new, energy-efficient roof can enhance your home’s value.
  • Improved comfort: An energy-efficient roof helps maintain a more comfortable indoor temperature year-round, improving your living experience.
  • Environmental benefits: By reducing energy consumption, you contribute to a cleaner environment and lower greenhouse gas emissions.


All in all, while adding energy efficient features will require an upfront investment, its benefits will pay you back many times over in the long run.


Save Money and Improve Performance With an Energy Efficient Roof


Your roofing system plays a vital role in your home’s energy efficiency. By making informed choices about roofing materials, design, and components, you can reduce heat loss, minimize heat gain during warm summer months, and ultimately save money on your energy bills. Investing in an energy-efficient roof not only lowers your expenses but also increases your home’s value, improves comfort, and contributes to a cleaner environment. Consult with roofing professionals today and explore the options at National Roof Certification & Inspection Association to maximize your home’s energy efficiency and create a more sustainable and cost-effective living space.


Roger Marx is a freelance writer that loves sharing his knowledge and expertise on the latest trending building and design products. He lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota where he enjoys spending time with his wife and working on backyard projects in his spare time. Roger’s work as a freelance writer can be found on Building Product Advisor, a construction industry resource site.



Mastering Senate Bill 721: California’s Balcony and Deck Inspection Law


A Comprehensive Guide for Property Managers and Owners
By Paul J. Watrous, President, National Roof Certification and Inspection Association


The revolutionary lyrics of Sam Cooke, “It’s been a long time coming but I know a change is gonna come,” preceded the reforming Civil Rights Act in 1964. Just a few short decades ago, life looked different. Travelers didn’t have to pass through TSA to board a plane, we didn’t have to wear seatbelts, and children didn’t have car seats. Homes are no longer built utilizing lead and asbestos-based products.


Reforming laws are typically passed due to unfortunate and tragic incidents and are in place to better serve the community, promote the safety of its citizens, and protect their most basic inalienable right, life. These things have now become part of everyday life. Many may not think twice about it because we understand and support the greater objective. Sam Cooke’s lyrics still ring true today however, the change is here, and the time is now.


Now, you might be asking what this has to do with California’s Senate Bill 721 (SB 721). In the ever-evolving world, staying informed about the latest legislative developments is essential, especially in the real estate industry. California’s SB 721, commonly known as the Balcony and Deck Inspection
Law, has significantly changed the landscape of multi-family investments, property maintenance, and safety. The 2015 tragic incident in Berkeley, California, served as a catalyst for SB 721, and three years later, the bill was enacted in 2018, aiming to take preventative measures to prevent such incidents from happening again.


People have the right to life. By ensuring property owners regularly assess and maintain their buildings to promote a safe living environment for their tenants and the public, all Exterior Elevated Elements (EEE) must be periodically inspected and maintained. Initially, changes can sometimes be
abrasive and difficult to navigate. But let’s approach this law with the positive mindset that everyone should have the right to life, a safe one at that, without worrying about history repeating itself. This law has far-reaching implications that will only continue to develop over time.



Naturally, being headquartered in Southern California, this inspection law caught the teams attention at The National Roof Certification and Inspection Association (NRCIA). Since 1995, the NRCIA has been known for trailblazing the roof inspection industry with best practices and processes.


Through research, crafting educational and training courses, and developing tools and resources that target the inspection industry, the NRCIA is committed to promoting safety, transparency, and excellence within the real estate community. Recognizing the importance of SB 721 compliance, California stakeholders have been inquiring about this training which commenced the development of NRCIA’s newest educational content. “Mastering SB 721: The Comprehensive Guide to California’s Balcony and Deck Safety Law” is designed to assist service providers, property managers, and owners navigate the intricacies of this new law.


After countless hours of combing through the legislation and talking with the parties involved, from building owners to city officials, the NRCIA was able to compile a three-hour course covering the history of SB 721 to understand the law and processes on a deeper level fully. The course comprises modules covering the inspection terminology, requirements, timelines, compliance, procedures, and proper documentation. Upon completion of this course, students will gain insight and shareable knowledge and be equipped to confidently navigate the SB 721 process, adding value to the services they offer. Additional field resources are provided, keeping the course details and the law at your fingertips.


SB 721 represents a significant step forward in ensuring the structural integrity and safety of exterior elevated elements in multifamily buildings throughout California. Property managers and owners must be well-informed and prepared to comply with this law. NRCIA’s course, “Mastering SB 721,” is a valuable resource for staying ahead in this evolving landscape. By prioritizing safety and compliance, property managers and owners can protect their real estate investments and the well-being of both their tenants and the public. Berlin, in South Orange County, points out the stereotypical landlord mindset: “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Breaking long-time habits or strategies can be challenging, especially when it consumes more time, expertise, professional services, and financial resources. After the initial inspection cycles, this law will subsequently edify the property owner’s mindset, shifting from reactive repairs to preventative maintenance, ultimately creating a better life for their tenants.


As with most changes, friction can occur, and SB 721 is no different. Beyond the initial frustration of another landlord requirement, locating a qualified industry professional to perform these inspections is the first challenge. Only firms who are licensed in California as an architect, engineer, or contractor (“A,” “B,” or “C-5,” who has at least five years’ experience in constructing multistory buildings) or a building inspector affiliated with a recognized association are allowed to perform these inspections. Due to the additional expectations on inspectors, only a limited number of qualified individuals will offer the inspection service. As we get closer to the January 1, 2025, deadline, these certified inspectors will be overwhelmed with the large number of inspection requests, and finding an available inspector will be a challenge. Most qualified individuals we questioned choose to forego offering the inspections and only perform the more lucrative restorative work.



Bridging the gap from the inspector to the contractor lies another speed bump that could cause delays, which is the financial component. With the typical mindset of “if it aint broke, don’t fit it,”routine preventative maintenance repairs often get deferred, resulting in more extensive and
expensive resolutions. Once the initial SB 721 inspection report is delivered, the required restorative repairs need to be determined by a licensed contractor to become SB 721 compliant. Depending on the condition of the Exterior Elevated Elements (EEE), the extent of the scope of work
may put unexpected financial stress on the building owner. After receiving the report, the law permits 120 days to obtain proposals and to pull a building permit; then the restorative work must be completed within 120 days from permit issuance. Scheduling inspections early and utilizing the timeframes properly will allow landlords to budget their time and gather funds for these required repairs before the January 1, 2025, deadline.  With anything required by law, there are consequences for non-compliance. There are a lot of intricacies to this law, and it is important that building owners or their designated agent consults a trained and certified inspector to perform these mandated inspections to get SB 721 compliant before 1/1/2025. Fines can range from $100-$500 per day until the repairs are completed. In addition, a building safety lien can be filed on the property with associated costs incurred. Complying with SB 721 law may assist in preventing personal injuries and potential lawsuits.


Ultimately the implementation of the CA SB 721 law and knowing how to navigate the process efficiently will elevate the demand for professional property management and inspection services. For more information about NRCIA’s “Mastering SB 721” course and how it can benefit your property
management efforts, visit Stay ahead, stay safe, and stay SB 721 compliant for a brighter future in California’s multifamily housing sector.