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New house in the Pyrenees: which roof to choose?

Building a new house in the Pyrenees requires meeting the climatic constraints of this beautiful region.

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Building a new house in the Pyrenees requires meeting the constraints of this beautiful region. Slope, materials…, the roofing adapts to the requirements of the mountain construction. THE builder Sic Houses has developed a Pyrenees line dedicated to this demanding environment.


What regulations for roofing in the Pyrenees?

The climate of mountainous areas imposes roofs steeper to avoid the accumulation of snow and ice in winter, which would weigh too heavily on the house structure. " In the plains, the roof slopes are generally 45%. But as soon as you go up in altitude, you need slopes of 60% to 100% depending on the municipality. », explains Laurent Canet, sales representative in the Pyrenees sector at Maisons Sic
In municipalities at altitude greater than 500 meters, the roofs are thus much steeper. These installation zones are defined by the modified NV65 rule and by Eurocode 1 wind and snow applicable to France.
Shape, materials, colors, the choice of roof of the new house in the Pyrenees is partly dictated by the PLU (local town planning plans) available at the town hall. The latter impose constraints which guarantee a certain architectural continuity in the municipality.

What seismic risks for the construction of new houses in the Pyrenees?

One of the great particularities of the construction in the Pyrenees is that it involves taking into account the seismic risks. Since October 24, 2010, France has had a new seismic regulations. Of Eastern Pyrenees Asked Atlantic Pyrenees, through theAriege and Hautes Pyrenees, the mountain range may have felt tremors in the past. “  You can be in zone 3 or zone 4 depending on the location. We take this element into account in the construction of our houses. Thus, the builder Maisons Sic systematically involves a design office which recommends seismic construction rules adapted to the terrain: taking into account the nature of the soil, quality materials, resistance and deformability of the structure, chaining of the elements of structure… », explains Laurent Canet.

Pyrenees seismic risk
New seismic zoning in France. The new house in the Pyrenees must take into account the seismic risk.


New house in the Pyrenees, contemporary and traditional

The village houses about departments of the Pyrenees offer traditional architecture which gives an incomparable charm to the country. THE local materials like wood, stone,slate are always omnipresent and blend into the environment. To blend into this privileged environment, a builder implemented locally as Sic houses takes advantage of his knowledge of the country to offer houses that blend in with the rest of the landscape. THE roof sections, are inspired by those of local barns both in terms of shape and materials. Despite this traditional appearance, the plans remain very contemporary.

A new house in the Pyrenees with convertible attic

The steep slopes of Pyrenees houses have the advantage of offering more volume under roof. The height under roof can thus exceed 1,80 meters over a good part of the house, which offers volumes perfectly livable. Whether they are designed as a floor in their own right, a simple attic to rooms to arrange later, the convertible attic are planned from the start of the project and represent an additional investment. In most new houses in fact, the roof rests on farmhouses. These so-called industrial frames are economical, but use a significant surface area in the attic which is then uninhabitable. We then talk about lost attic.
Personalized convertible attic require a traditional frame and insulation under crawling. Less economical, these solutions offer rooms with incomparable charm. It is also an opportunity to create a cathedral ceiling on all or part of your living room for a dazzling result by creating gaps in the living room or a mezzanine open to the living room.

habitable attic new house Pyrenees
A beautiful roof slope in the Pyrenees offers beautiful habitable volumes

What coverage for your new house in the Pyrenees

Many roof shapes are possible for new houses in the Pyrenees. The most common is the gable roof or two slopes. THE direction of the ridge will depend on the aesthetic choices, the terrain, the views of the landscape and the thermal needs of the house depending on its orientation in relation to the sun (bioclimatic). The choice of materials is also very important. THE weather conditions extreme and prolonged conditions can indeed damage poorly adapted materials. In mountain climate, we therefore favor robust materials which will not become porous over time and will prevent water infiltration into the house in the long term.
To avoid sudden ice falls, a roof snow stopping device is usually installed.

A contemporary house covered in slate

The slate roofs natural beauty of our traditional villages Pyrenees. Even today, the material is attractive and still proves its effectiveness on very steep roofs. Its advantages are its waterproofness, its resistance to atmospheric conditions, in particular the succession of freezing/thawing. However, it is a fragile and rather heavy material and is not always cheap, so different materials have tried to imitate its incomparable aesthetic to fit into the landscape. Many modern houses or renovation have therefore opted for these less expensive imitations.

Model of new house in the Pyrenees
Equipped with a beautiful slate roof, the Pyrénées 12 model from Maisons Sic offers 128 m2 well distributed between the attic space and the ground floor.

The tile even in the high mountains

In Pyrenees, it is not uncommon to see terracotta tile or concrete. In fact, it is better suited to the plains, where the climate is less harsh. Nevertheless, many products available today meet the standards of high mountain construction (above 900 meters) and display the NF mountain standard which guarantees great resistance to frost. The appearance also knows how to compete with its competitors, with gray to anthracite tones. “ In the plains, depending on PLU, it is generally the classic tile which is indicated. The higher you go, the more suitable materials you need. It can be flat black tile for a 60% slope. But the higher we go, the more the slate becomes apparent », explains Laurent Canet.

The steel tray, an economical cover

In the high mountains, the steel pan is a cover that has made its place in new house. Durable, economical, easy to install, the material has serious advantages. This alternative will nevertheless disappoint fans of beautiful traditional roofs. Manufacturers have strengthened their proposals to offer a more refined aesthetic and a wider color palette. Finally all-in-one solutions, made up of sandwich signs are now available.


Building your new house in the Pyrenees cannot be improvised. First of all, you must choose a reliable manufacturer who will be able to implement the techniques and materials adapted to this demanding environment. Your new house This will allow you to enjoy these breathtaking landscapes for a long time.


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