What is a Slate Roof?
Slate Roofs are made with tiles cut from a natural metamorphic rock mined from the earth. Slate is predominantly mined in Spain, with Brazil being a distant second. Natural slate will generally outlast your home! It is among the most expensive roofing systems, both for the cost of the material and the intensive skilled labor required.
What is Synthetic Slate?
Depending on the manufacturer, synthetic slate is made of rubber, plastic, and other materials to make a very strong roofing system. Synthetic slate roofing is much lighter and easier to install than natural slate.
Generally, when a homeowner selects slate or synthetic slate, it is primarily for the unmistakable aesthetic appeal. Both natural and synthetic slate are very durable as well. If the slate look is a must-have, then deciding between natural and synthetic comes down to cost. Natural slate is very heavy, on the higher end of the price spectrum, and very few roofers are qualified to install it.
Synthetic slate, on the other hand, is light, accessible, more affordable, and more generally supported by roofing contractors. As such, synthetic slate is the more popular option to achieve the look of slate.