The True Cost of Cedar

The true cost of cedar shakes and shingles

An Enviroshake® roof is a one-time investment, making it significantly more cost effective than both fire-treated cedar and untreated cedar over the life of your roof. Unlike traditional cedar shake, Enviroshake also does not involve additional maintenance costs, treatment fees, or replacement charges. A natural cedar shake roof can be up to three times more expensive than an Enviroshake roof over a 50-year period.

You can’t afford not to!

  • Putting Enviroshake or Enviroshingle on your home is a one-time cost for the life of the product. Unlike other products, Enviroshake will be not involve additional maintenance costs, treatment fees, or replacement charges
  • Enviroshake products offer a 70-80% ROI to homeowners 
  • Putting Enviroshake or Enviroshingle on your home will actually increase the home’s resale value, as the warranty is fully transferable and the new owners inherit a lifetime roof!
  • Many insurance companies offers discounted insurance premiums for homes with Enviroshake roofs due to their impact resistance, and fire rating. 

Understanding the real cost of cedar shakes and shingles

The cost of a cedar shake roof varies depending on a number of factors, including the cedar type and grade/quality, project location, and installation pattern and techniques used. A typical cedar roof would need to be replaced at least once after a twenty-five year lifespan with maintenance and repairs occuring at least every few years over the same period. Over that same twenty-five year period, a high-tech composite like Enviroshake would only incur the initial installation cost, saving the homeowner approximately 60%—and an Enviroshake roof will last far longer!

Real woods hidden costs

Wooden shakes and shingles require more roof preparation before installation than you might expect. The overall cost of a wood shingle roof is more than just the product and labour—it also includes the removal of any existing roofing material and consultation to ensure the roof deck and/or strapping do not need to be replaced. In addition, traditional cedar involves a waste factor of 15–20% and requires the supply of extra material to account for poor pieces. There are also other cost considerations to make, including the right underlayment—a special waterproofing membrane most contractors recommend to eliminate exposure to the elements, including moisture, and building up the roof with battens to allow for air flow. Enviroshake can be installed right on a solid roof deck, and can be installed with 30% less labour than traditional cedar shakes.


Another consideration to make when choosing a roofing material is product lifespan, which will impact both what you are prepared to pay for your project today and what you will ultimately pay over the life of your roof. While roofing options such as asphalt shingles are inexpensive upfront, they require regular replacement every 10–20 years as well as maintenance. In contrast, Enviroshake composite shakes and shingles are highly durable with a 50-year lifespan and require no maintenance.

Natural slate is another long-lasting and classically breathtaking roofing option. If maintained and installed properly, a slate roof can have a lifespan of 100 years. Nonetheless, slate is also extremely heavy, and most properties require structural reinforcement to support it. Further, slate roof installations are greatly labour-intensive and time-consuming, as the material is installed using small slate hooks—this drives up labour costs exponentially. Slate’s weight also means extra safety precautions must be taken on the jobsite to ensure falling pieces are not a liability. The factors converge to make slate one of the most expensive roofing materials on the market.

Enviroslate®, on the other hand, can last for more than 50 years and is approximately half the price of natural slate. Because it weighs only 1/3 what natural slate weighs, it also does not require any special roof reinforcements. In addition to being far easier to install than natural slate, it is also significantly more durable and is not damaged by being walked upon. Annual visual inspections are required with natural slate to identify missing, cracked, broken, and sliding pieces, which must then be replaced. Synthetic slate, in contrast, does not require such inspection or maintenance, lowering long-term costs.

For homeowners making important roofing decisions and comparing the costs of natural cedar and slate, there is much to consider. For those not willing to compromise on appearance and longevity, the affordability, performance, and aesthetic of composite cedar and slate shingles make them wonderful alternatives.

Interested in reading more project profiles? Click Here 

Contact us for more information or download our brochure today!