Victorian-inspired architecture runs a wide gamut of styles from the simplistic Folk Victorian to the regal Italianate. Understanding the style of your particular Victorian home can help determine the best kind of roofing material for your roofing repair or replacement project. There are three Victorian house styles in particular that work well with the elegant, low-maintenance but high-cost slate tile roofing.
If you own one of the Victorian house styles mentioned below, discuss slate roofing as a potential material with your roofing contractors.
Gothic Revival Victorian
Gothic Revival Victorians combine the asymmetrical layout of the Victorian home with the stone construction, arched windows, and spanning size of a Gothic cathedral-inspired home. The Gothic Revivals tend to have several different roof types but mostly lean towards either modified, lower-slope gable roofs or hipped roofs, which feature four parallel sides that slope slightly upwards to flatter peak.
The roofs of a Gothic Revival tend to be more visible from the road, so it is important to choose a roofing material that matches the elegance of the general style and the stone siding. Slate tile can fit this bill providing the natural color of the stone doesn't clash with the color of the stone siding.
Using stone-on-stone will create a monochromatic look but in a way that acts to highlight the architectural details of this castle-like house.
Second Empire Victorian
Second Empire Victorian homes have the mansard style roof that is often mistakenly associated with the Victorian-inspired architecture family as a whole. Mansard roofs have four nearly vertical sides that drop over each side of the house and make way for windows and other architectural protrusions. The vertical sides lead up to a nearly flat upper roof.
The vertical sides of a Second Empire look terrific with slate roofing because the shape gives the slate plenty of room to be the star of the show. Your roofer can even install the slate in a brick pattern to add more dimensions to the mansard roof, which is one of the rare roof styles that is meant to detract away from the rest of the house.
You don't want to use the slate on the upper roof—not because the stone would be a poor match but rather because no one will see it. Save some money by using either metal or asphalt roofing on the flat roof as both materials help with waterproofing and drainage but cost less than slate tile roofing.