Typically a home’s roof needs to be replaced every 20 to 25 years, depending on roofing materials and the quality of the installation. While small repairs may be needed before that time. Home buyers looking at houses older than 25 years will certainly need to replace the roof.
When the home inspector sees damage.
The Standards of Practice of InterNACHI (International Association of Certified Home Inspectors) does not require the inspector actually walk on the roof, but allows him to observe the roof from the ground. It is likely to only see serious roof damage. If the home inspector sees roof damage, they may recommend a full roof inspection. Generally it will be difficult to secure insurance or a mortgage until it is repaired
When a roof inspection is requested prior to closing.
If a roof inspection is requested, the seller may pay for it before closing. The home price may be lowered based on the cost of the roof replacement. Before making a decision, talk to the insurance company about the timing.
When a roof inspection shows no need for replacement.
Because a roof inspection is not a standard part of buying a house, a bad roof may fall through the cracks and allows closing to move forward. The lender or homeowner’s insurance company may require a roof inspection if it is suspected that the roof is old or has serious damage. The roof inspection could pass or fail depending on the inspector and the lender or insurance companies own policies and the severity of the damage, even though they are all looking at the same roof.
The buyer, can also request a roof inspection if the roof is suspect.
A quality roof inspection includes:
- Determine if the roof has the appropriate shingles and that they are installed correctly.
- Getting on the roof and walking every inch.
- Examining the interior and exterior of the home for active or previously repaired areas.
- Determine if current or prior leaks may have caused water or structural damage.
- Inspecting flashing and seals.