Roof terrace design ideas, inspiration & pictures

Can i convert my roof into a rooftop terrace?

Changing aspects of your home, for example your roof, to be multifunctional will never be a disappointment. Most people buy multifunctional furniture, but you can apply this idea to sections of the home, such as the roof, and transform it from an area that just protects the home to something that will give you and your guests hours of entertainment–a roof terrace, where you can spend hours relaxing with friends and family and enjoying your view.

It’s not only a great place for relaxation and sight-seeing, but also for pure personalization. Those who love to garden will find new respite creating a rooftop garden. You can make it your own with colorful lighting, lounge furniture, or even a small fire pit depending on your roof’s support. And as you enjoy your own little reprieve, your home will substantially increase in value.

How to build a roof terrace?

This is one of the easier home projects to take on, because the process doesn’t require a lot of steps. The most work you’ll do is the designing and execution.

-First, make sure the space you have available has the potential to be all you want it to be. 

-After checking with your architect and getting permission from the Commissioner, ask your neighbors to see if they’d be happy with it. If not, this can be a snag in your construction as they can also speak with the State Commissioner and express their qualms. 

-Next, design it. Make a tally of all the things you want to include, from potted plants to furniture, to decorative accessories and mood lighting. 

-Gather your supplies. Explore the home and garden stores in your area and the options you have for materials. 

-Finally, build it. Start piecing together your relaxation and entertainment area until it fits your professional plan.

Is permission required to plan a roof terrace in Malaysia?

As with most home additions and extensions in Malaysia, you need permission for property development. You need to send an application to the State Commissioner and detail what the development will be used for. The Commissioner requires a few other details, such a frontage, access, and the design of the building for starters. If the Commissioner is satisfied with everything, you will have permission to build. This can come with conditions and restrictions, or if you’re really lucky, you can be granted unconditional permission, but this is very rare. If you are denied, however, there is an invitation for re-submission within a set time period.

Different materials for roof terrace

When covering up a flat roof, traditional materials like concrete tiles, asphalt shingles, and corrugated metal are not suitable, because they are almost guaranteed to leak. Here’s a comprehensive list of roofing materials with their pros and cons that you can use to create a roof terrace:

PVC: This material lasts 15-30 years. PVC membranes are a single layer of thermoplastic material and make roofs especially strong and durable. PVC seams are heat-welded to form a watertight bond to prevent the leakage you’d get from one of the traditional roofing materials. Most PVC membranes, especially white-colored ones, are energy efficient, because they reflect the heat of the sun instead of soaking it up. The downside is that it’s expensive to install. They’re roughly 320-460 MYR per square meter.

EPDM Rubber: EPDM lasts 10-15 years. It’s cheaper than PVC, but not as strong, and it has a tendency to soak up the sun and get hot underfoot. Costs are about 185-320 MYR per square meter.

TPO: has a lifespan of 7-20 years. It’s similar to a rubber roof in cost, but it also has the  welded seams like PVC for durability. This material requires experienced roofer, however. Costs are about 230-370 MYR per square meter.

Modified Bitumen: will give you 10-20 years. Multi-layers, but also heat absorbing and difficult to install. Estimated costs are 140-275 MYR per square meter.

Built Up Roofing (BUR): lasts from 15-20 years. This is one of the more eco-friendly flat roof options because it reflects the sun and cuts back on energy consumption and cost. This system isn’t particularly scuff or tear-resistant and it can’t resist much foot traffic once applied. Costs range from 230-320 MYR per square meter.

Silicon Spray: lasts up to 20 years. It gives you seamless installation, but it is costly. The material make it more expensive and average about 275-460 MYR per square meter.

 What else can I add to my rooftop terrace?

There are a few key functional and decorative items you can add to your new roof terrace to make it as comfortable as if you were entertaining indoors. There are hundreds of screening systems you can buy to lock out the bugs, or you could go for the Hawaiian theme and get a few bug-repelling tiki torches and exotic flowers. Buy a few parasols, one for the dining area and one for the lounge, and protect yourself from the intense summer sun. When the sun finally sets, you’ll want to get some choice lighting to extend the party into the evening. Icicle lights are perfect for a romantic or even majestic ambience. Or you could opt for different colored light bulbs–perhaps colors that accentuate the flowers you’ve chosen.