commercial flat roofs

Why Commercial Buildings Prefer Flat Roofs?

You can observe traditional roofing in most residential buildings, especially in small-sized houses. However, the scenario is different in large commercial buildings. You will hardly notice any traditional sloped roofs on these large commercial buildings. 

Commercial buildings usually prefer flat roofs in the first world countries because it provides many advantages in terms of space and design. Developing countries are also following the pattern and adopting the flat roof design for their commercial buildings.

However, many people are confused regarding the advantages they will get for adopting the flat roof design. Therefore, I have jotted down a few points to have some clarity on what to expect from these flat roofs.

tacoma flat roof

Easy Maintenance

Unlike a traditional sloped roof, flat roofs are easy to install and maintain. This roof design is easily accessible and requires no extra precautions. You do not need ladders and equipment to climb on a flat roof.

The biggest concern in traditional roofing is the health of the shingles because if these shingles are not properly taken care of, they can cause cracks and leakages in the building.

However, there is no such problem with the flat roofing design. First, you need to ensure that the drainage system is properly working and there are no blockages.

Usually, flat roofs require 60% to 70% less maintenance than the traditional roofing design. It means there is less interruption during work and also a low cost of maintenance.

More Spacious

With the increase in the number of businesses, space is becoming scarce. Especially in cities that are business hubs, the availability of floor space is becoming a significant issue. The problem with the traditional sloppy roof is that you cannot utilize it for any purpose. Therefore, it is considered a waste space with a high opportunity cost.

However, a flat roof design is a blessing in disguise. The flat roof provides extra space, which saves a lot of money. Commercial buildings use this extra space for multiple purposes like:

  • Installing Generators
  • Installing Solar Panels
  • Roof Gardening
  • Party Area
  • Storage Room

So, you can imagine utilizing this extra space according to your requirements without spending extra money. Therefore, businesses in first-world countries prefer flat roof designs for their offices.

Aesthetically Appealing

There is no doubt that traditional roofing has played a significant role in the development of building designs. However, these conventional sloped roofs are aesthetically unpleasing and do not offer much customization. Back in the mid-’70s and 80’s most roof designs looked similar, and there was not much differentiation between buildings.

However, flat roof designs have changed the landscape by offering customizable designs. Now building owners have the liberty to choose the roof design according to their taste. Apart from that, these flat roofs are also upgradable; therefore, if you are short of the budget, you can always upgrade your flat roof later.

Rooftop gardening is trending nowadays, which is only possible on these flat roofs. These plants look visually appealing and absorb water from the roofs, which prevents water ponding and leakages. Therefore, it is the most eco-friendly option available in the market. 


The installation cost of a traditional roof is very high as compared to a flat roof. There is less material required in a flat roof, and also, it is not very complex. Also, the materials used in the construction of flat roofs are more affordable comparatively. These roofs are lighter in weight which puts less pressure on the structure of the building.

Flat roofs can last up to 30 to 50 years, depending on the maintenance and care. This is impossible in the case of a traditional roof. Moreover, as mentioned earlier, flat roofs require very little maintenance. It means you do not have to allocate a large budget for maintenance purposes. Therefore, it is the rationale for business people to adopt a flat roof for their commercial buildings, which will have less impact on their balance sheet.

Flat roof in seattle


There is a misconception that flat roofs are less durable because of the less material used in them. However, the reality is the exact opposite. The flat roof design is the strongest of all the roof designs in the market. These roofs can withstand extreme weather conditions like heavy storms and snowfall.

You can observe the heavy mechanical equipment like backup generators and air-conditioners installed on the flat roofs. These machines can weigh up to several tons, and still, this roofing design faces no problem in handling such heavyweights. It protects from UV rays and water leakages to a great extent. All you need to do is to take care of the extra coating, and you are done. So, it is less hassle and promising results.


A slopped roof is an indicator of the end of the construction. The expansion on the traditional sloped roof is expensive and complex. However, you only need to remove a few parts and add additional stories in flat roofs. In addition, it allows growing businesses to expand the building in later years once they have more human resources.

This also saves land space and the cost required to occupy the space. The expansion option is very tempting in the business world, and they can add as many stories as needed. 

Final Words

In a nutshell, flat roofs have become the first choice for commercial buildings. There is less hassle and cost on installing as well as maintaining this roof design. In addition, there are many customizable options available. Therefore, businesses can adapt according to their taste and requirements.

I have tried to highlight some of the most critical points of flat roofing to make you realize the benefits of installing this roofing design in your commercial building. You get extra space to install generators or air-conditioners and expand the facility in later years. The overall monetary value of the building increases many times if there is a flat installed.

These roofs are aesthetically appealing and more durable than traditional roofs. Therefore, flat roofs are considered a safer and more viable option for commercial buildings.


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