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U.S. Roofing Demand to Reach 278 Million Squares in 2010

U.S. roofing demand is projected to expand less than one percent per year through 2010 to 278 million squares, with value expected to rise to $14 billion. The nonresidential construction market will provide the best opportunity for gains in the roofing industry, helped by a recovery from declines in the new office, commercial and industrial segments. Furthermore, institutional construction spending will continue to expand through 2010, bolstering new roofing demand. The nonresidential market will also see healthy improvement and repair expenditures, which will aid reroofing demand. Renovation activity in the residential market will provide growth opportunities for roofing. However, the smaller new residential roofing segment will be restrained by a weak new housing environment. These and other trends are presented in "Roofing," a new study from The Freedonia Group, Inc., a Cleveland-based industry market research firm.

Among the various roofing materials, plastic and metal will see the fastest growth in the US through 2010. Both materials will benefit from a healthy outlook in the nonresidential construction market. Thermoplastic polyolefin roofing and spray-applied roofing will continue to make inroads into the roofing market as product development expands and consumer familiarity increases. Metal roofing, a key material in the industrial building segment, will see solid gains due to the recovery in construction spending in this market. Metal roofing will continue to increase in popularity in commercial applications, as well as in residential markets, where metal panels, tiles and shingles are being used as alternatives to roofing tile and asphalt shingles. In 2005, asphalt shingles accounted for nearly 60 percent of the total installed area and will maintain this leading position through 2010. However, demand for asphalt shingles will be constrained by the weak outlook for new residential roofing.

Through 2010, the fortunes of the building construction markets are expected to reverse from those in the 2000 to 2005 period, when residential construction significantly outpaced nonresidential markets. Nonresidential roofing demand will be supported by accelerating construction activity and a release of pent-up reroofing demand. Despite the weakness in new housing construction, opportunities for growth are expected in the residential roofing market. Products designed to mimic asphalt shingles, roofing tiles, wood shakes and shingles, and slate will post gains, as will environmentally friendly products such as recycled roofing materials and composite shingles.

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