Upgrading the exterior of your house can help to increase the property value of your home. Installing a decorative roof is one way to improve the architecture of your home. If you love the rustic visual appeal of palatial Mediterranean villas, you can retrofit your roof with picturesque Spanish-style clay tiles.


While traditionally associated with homes in countries that border the Mediterranean, clay tiles date back to ancient times. Artisans would handcraft the tiles in prehistoric China, the Middle East, Greece and Rome. The tiles on houses that resemble Italianate villas and Spanish cottages last for decades and can withstand fading for over 50 years.

The barrel design of Spanish tiles provides homes with a distinct undulating roof surface. If you want to give your property an exotic, semitropical air, a clay tile roof will help you achieve the aesthetics you desire.

Types of Spanish Tiles

While it is common to see Spanish tiles in deep oranges, you are not limited to those hues when choosing roofing material. You can choose from a variety of solid color hues including grays, blues and reds. If you want your home to have an Old World flair, you can purchase tiles that look weathered. You can also mix and match colors of tiles to give the roof a distinct appearance.

While you can purchase Spanish tiles made of traditional clay materials, manufactures also sell metal barrel tiles that look just like clay and have weatherproof features. Metal tiles have protective surfaces, reflective topcoats to improve energy efficiency and steel cores to improve corrosion resistance.

Choosing the Right Tiles

Make sure that you only order tiles that are approved for your climate. Some types of clay tiles are specifically designed for warmer climates and may suffer damage in cold weather.

If you live in a region that experiences frequent high winds, Spanish tiles are ideal for roofs. Because tile roofs can last for decades and are low-maintenance, they are also more economical in the long run than other types of roofs.


When you are ready to install a tile roof, contact a licensed roofer to schedule an onsite inspection in order to get an estimate of installation costs. Depending on the type of tiles you choose, you may be able to order the materials directly from the roofer. Otherwise, you can purchase specialty tiles, including imported materials, from third-party suppliers.

Make sure that the roofer use you choose has experience installing Mediterranean tiles and can provide you with photos of previous work and references.

In addition, traditional clay tiles can be heavy so the roofers may need to reinforce your roof before installing the new material.