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Check the Roof Before You Buy

October 19th, 2017

Before you buy a home, you should learn the age of the roof, the typical lifespan of the roofing material, and whether there’s any deterioration.

Granular roofs- 10 to 25 years

Asphalt or fiberglass-based shingles have a granular mineral top coating that should be consistent in color and texture. Deterioration wears out the mineral layer, so shingles appear spotty, mottled, bumpy and uneven.

Wood roofs- 20-30 years

Finer wood roofs are made of redwood or cedar. Shingles are machine made and shakes are hand-split for a more rough-hewn look. Worn wood roofs have visible cracks or curled edges.

Tile roofs- 75 years

Tiles can be made of clay, concrete or slate. The harder the material, the more durable the roof; broken tiles can easily be replaced.

Metal roofs- 75 years

Metal roofs have interlocking seams making them attractive, durable, fire-resistant and modern-looking, but dents due to hail are often not covered by homeowner’s insurance.

 

If you are trying to judge a roof’s quality, look for the following:

  • straight even seams
  • consistent color and texture
  • no sagging in between support beams
  • no corroded flashing around chimneys and valleys
  • good soffit vents to circulate air into the attic
  • straight gutters free of debris

In order to have the best idea of the condition of the roof make sure you have a professional home inspection done before you purchase a home. A professional home inspection should reveal the condition of the roof and give you an idea of the time frame for replacement. If it does need to be replaced, ask your Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices network professional for advice in renegotiating your purchase contract.

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