At Alta Roofing and Waterproofing we often get calls from potential home buyers asking if they should get a roof inspection when buying a house. Buying a house can be daunting for many reasons, a house may look fine on the outside, but you never know what issues may lie beneath the surface!
That is why it is always important to know what you’re getting yourself into before putting in an offer. One of the biggest “bones” of a house? The roof! It protects everything inside! So, it’s important to have all the facts prior to purchasing. While Alta Roofing and Waterproofing recommends hiring a professional to inspect the roof, these are some things to look out for that you may be able to pick up on yourself:
1. Cracked/ Broken or Missing Roof Tile One missing or cracked roof tile can lead to a leaking roof. This then leads to water damage and moisture within the internal structure, leading to mold in the roof and down the walls. All from this from one broken tile!
2. Existing Roof Leak A leak may appear to be coming from one spot but is actually leaking from somewhere else. Common causes of leaks include valleys, gutters, chimneys and flashings. Leak can cause rot, alongside mold, algae, and dampness. A leaking roof will not heal itself, and the cost to replace wooden beams, plaster and roofing is a lot pricier than fixing a small leak.
3. Rusting Rust on a metal roof can lead to holes and may mean a whole new roof is required to ensure no leaks into the home. Roof replacement is certainly not a cheap exercise so if your potential home has signs of rust it is important to have a professional inspect the extent of the damage and discuss some possible cheaper solutions prior to purchasing.
4. Cracking, Pointing & Bedding Major or minor cracks in the bedding and pointing can cause leaks or dislodgement of the ridge. This type of issue may be hard to see from the ground, this is why we recommend having the roof looked over by a professional who will be able to pick up this type of issue.
Besides your own visual inspection some important questions to ask would include: How long since any works have been done on the roof/ what was done? How old is the roof? Who last did works on the roof? Were they a reputable company?
Unfortunately, many of the major issues of a roof can not be seen from the ground and require an inspection from a qualified roofer. Again, seek for a qualified opinion prior to the purchase of your home, whether this be a firm quote via visual inspection or just a rough estimate to provide you with an idea of possible costs you may encounter for general maintenance and repairs that would be required.