The roof is the part of your home that is most exposed to weather and climatic conditions. The slow, prolonged infiltration of water through the roof can destroy insulation, drywall, and support beams on the inside, and siding, foundations, and lawns on the outside. If undetected, a leak can cause rot that will endanger the structural integrity of the roof framing system and cause thousands of dollars in damage. You can and should learn how to inspect your roof, but there are a number of signs that a professional home inspector will see that will elude the typical homeowner, especially if you’re unable to get up on your roof.
A QUICK LOOK
Some homeowners can inspect their roof for trouble areas and, if they have the requisite expertise, make the required repairs themselves. You should not attempt your own roof inspection in bad weather, if you have a fear of heights, or if there is any other possibility of a danger to your person by climbing on the roof. If you are able to inspect your roof safely, check for loose shingles or shakes. Look for curling, fraying and tears at the edges. If you have a tile or slate roof check for missing or cracked pieces. Check the flashings around chimneys and vents. Maintaining good roof flashings, especially those at roof edges and penetrations, is crucial, as many roof leaks are actually flashing leaks. Clear the gutters of leaves and debris, as these cause water to back up between shingles or around flashings.
ON CLOSER INSPECTION
Maintaining your roof is essential, and the greatest importance of having a roof professionally inspected is preventing damage. During their comprehensive search, the home inspector will view and analyze all shingles, corners and gutters in the roof that are prone to failure. They will look for missing or chipped shingles; broken or detached gutters and downspouts; bent or rusting flashing; dark or wet areas, indicating moss or fungus growth; and any signs of condensation in the attic.
This early detection can significantly help damages from arising in the first place. Like a crack in a windshield that starts small and then spreads to envelop your entire view, so too can the smallest defect in the roof develop and extend to other areas of the roof to create problems such as leaking and heat loss. That is why it is vital that problems detected during a roof inspection are fixed immediately before they spread to other areas of the roof.
WORTH THE COST
When selling, knowing you have a sound roof adds great value to your home and is an important selling point. When buying a home, a professional roof inspection can identify problems and defects that need to be fixed before you sign on the dotted line (and can greatly affect your decision on whether to buy or not to buy). Even if your house is brand-new, don’t skimp on an inspection. Even if you live in an area with year-round mild weather where not even the oldest resident has ever witnessed a storm, don’t skimp on an inspection. What you see isn’t always what you get, and damage can slowly build up over years before it becomes a bona fide ‘problem’.
There really is no time like the present to have your roof inspected by a professional. Don’t find out the hard way that it is far more cost effective to be proactive and spend a few hundred dollars on a home inspection than to suffer the reaction of having to pay thousands of dollars on costly roof repairs.
Contact Building Pro Inspections today for a quote or to book an inspection. Whether you’re buying, selling, or planning a renovation, we have the expertise and experience to help you make your decision with clarity and confidence.