There is an important feature—a pitched roof—in our vernacular architecture that can best be considered by prospective homeowners before they start building their homes. Vernacular architecture is an architectural style based on the local needs for shelter and the available building materials in the area. Local traditions also play a part on how homes or living spaces are built. In simple terms, our past is important because we can learn from it. How our ancestors built their homes is worth looking into.

The traditional family home in the Philippines is the bahay kubo. This structure has undergone several changes over the years to fit the needs and taste of the modern Filipino. However, the basic silhouette is still very much recognizable.

Two Important Features in Our Vernacular Architecture | MyBoysen

Why did our ancestors build homes with a pitched roof?  The answer lies in our climate.

Pitched Roof

A pitched roof is a sloping roof that has one or more slopes, which is more than 20 degrees.  Having a pitched roof has several advantages which our forefathers enjoyed. Some advantages are fairly new though as these are brought about by the invention of new materials.


In an interview with Real Living, Architect Joel Muñoz said, ““A good roof pitch would be at least 30 degrees, although traditional vernacular samples may go as high as 45 degrees, which I think is better. There are examples of bahay kubo with the house-to-roof ratio of one-is-to-three—meaning the height of the walls of the house is one-third the height of the roof—which makes for very cool interiors since the inhabitants are very far from the hottest part of the house as well as all the rising hot air.  Since materials then were organic and porous, the rising hot air escapes quite easily, making the cooling cycle very effective.”

Especially during the dry season with the sweltering heat (the heat index hit 53 degrees Celsius in Dagupan just recently), making a home that is fitting to this climate can only mean more comfort for you and your family. A pitched roof helps cool the house during the hot season because it gives space for hot air to rise.

Harvesting Rainwater

A pitched roof is also best to have during the wet season. Rain does not accumulate on the roof unlike in a flat one.  With our torrential downpours, this is a comforting thought. If ventilation is the main function of a pitched roof during the hot months, then effective water drainage is its function during the rainy months.

For eco-warriors, collecting rainwater is appealing, and a pitched roof makes it easier to achieve that. One can use simple rain barrels, or have an innovative system with pumps, tanks, and purification systems.

Optimal Structure for Solar Panel Installation

If you want to save water as well as use renewable energy instead of relying on fossil fuels, a pitched roof brings you a step closer to achieving the latter. These panels need to be installed at an angle so a pitched roof provides that and makes installation a lot easier.

Additional Space

The space under the roof can be used to make another living area. Be aware though that that space may become hot during the day. Using it as a storage space may be a better idea, although keeping that slope in its “pure” state may be best if you want that wow factor in your home. A feeling of awe is much easier to invoke when one can see the vaunted ceiling rising above.

Boysen has a roof paint called Cool Shades that can help reduce the temperature in your home, thus, making the interiors much cooler. This paint is your buddy in helping you bring down your electric bill. Click on this link to know more.

Aesthetic Appeal

From the outside, a pitched roof is used to give a home a more traditional and “classic” look. It has a timeless appeal and can make the structure stand out especially in a place where flat roofs are preferred for ultra-modern homes.

Some Cons

A pitched roof requires more money to build. The steeper the slope, the more materials you need, the higher the cost. As regards maintenance, the upkeep does not happen as frequently as that for a flat roof but one needs professionals to maintain it. It is important to choose a roofing material that is durable and that can last for a long time.

Boysen has paint products that can help protect your roof against all kinds of weather. We recommend these top choice paint products for your roof: Boysen Roofgard and Boysen Cool Shades.


Annie is the Managing Editor of Let it B | MyBoysen Blog. An unrepentant workaholic, she runs this blog and her own company Talking Lions ( She thrives on collaborating with people who are good at what they do, and working together with them to create something special. Annie learned interior styling while managing her own wholesale business in the Netherlands, importing high-end, handmade home furnishings to stock four outlets and a showroom in the country.

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