So New and Shiny!
Advancing age and structural damage aren’t the only reasons people choose to replace their roofs, or anything else for that matter. If people only ever bought new when the old article was a crumbling ruin, then we’d never see second-hand cars or hand-me-down clothes. Wanting in on the newest fad or the next cool thing to hit the streets or shelves drives a large part of the economy; whether it’s actual advances or merely a form of planned obsolescence matters little.
It’s the reason why companies like Apple or Microsoft can get away with releasing an upgrade on their products just a few years down the line, when the sheen’s barely even started to fade on the last one. Sales drive the market, and nothing drives sales like the newest shiny thing on the block.
It can be argued that, when it comes to roofing, very little has changed over time, but the fact is that not even the roofing industry is immune to the lure of the new and shiny. Incremental changes to roofing conditions and materials can be seen in the way manufacturers of roofing products, like GAF, market the newest and latest shingle design, or the newest technologically-advanced style of roofing tile. People naturally want to invest in products and materials that will last, and if it really is more durable, tougher, and saves them having to keep doing patch jobs after every storm or strong wind, then people are going to want to at least try them out.
Beyond just buying into the newness of it all, however, are sound practical, ecological, and even financial decisions for wanting to buy into the newest trend. Reducing ecological impact and “going green” has become a big thing; so-called green products have created a niche for themselves in the market, a large enough one that government has taken notice. Far from just regulating it, however, the government has actually gone so far as to encourage it.
Fitting your roof with solar panels is one of the things that the government has seen fit to reward, for example: Until 2016, you can get a tax credit if you install some way to harness alternative energy sources in your home, such as solar panels, solar water heaters, and the like.
Just because something is new doesn’t mean it’s just some other newfangled fad. New can be the start of something better.