Damaged shingle on the rood of home during a home inspection - Newmarket Home Inspector

Roof Inspection as Part of a Home Inspection

AUG 15, 2022

Roof Inspection as Part of a Home Inspection

Your home’s roof performs multiple functions, the main one being to keep mother nature out. Rain, snow and ice can cause serious damage to your home. A roof inspection as part of a home inspection from a certified home inspector will ensure that you know the current condition of your home’s roof and you can take measures to maintain its integrity avoiding potential leaks and issues in the future.

What can a home inspector tell me about my roof?
Your home inspector will inspect your roof from inside and out so that they can provide a full description of your home’s roof, including:

What is My Roof Type?
Is your roof considered sloped or flat? Vented or not? These descriptions will be important for determining what might be of concern and what the risks to you as the homeowner might be.

What is My Roof Construction Material?
Roofing materials can range from steel to asphalt shingles, tar and gravel, rubber membrane and even slate or clay tiles. Each material has its own characteristics, range of products and installation methods. Knowing what is covering your roof and inspecting its components will give your home inspector and you an understanding of your roof’s performance.

How Old is My Roof?
Your home inspector will use all of the information available to provide a best estimate of the age of your home’s roof. He will look at the type and the wear of the material, age of the home, installation method and style. This is often a best guess as installers aren’t signing and dating their work. 

A better question that your home inspector will answer is “How much life does my roof have left?” or “When does my roof need to be replaced next?”. The answer will depend on the current integrity of the components of your roof. Observed leaks or failure points will be highlighted in your home inspection report. Some roofs in some climates can last hundreds of years, others, especially here in Eastern Canada have a much shorter lifespan.

Where Could There Be a Leak on My Roof?
Each roof can range from simple to complex. Every design, material used and installation method carries with it pros and cons for you as a homeowner. Your home inspector is trained to look for potential problem areas and they will evaluate them and highlight them on your home inspection report. Some examples include:
  • Protrusions -vents, plumbing stacks, attached hardware
  • Transitions -roof slope changes, roof meets wall, valleys, chimneys
  • High wear areas -from traffic, snow, ice, rain, branches

Is My Roof Leaking?
Evidence of an active roof leak is not always obvious. Water may enter slowly and travel down construction material and even behind walls. What starts as a small leak, left unattended, can escalate into a serious problem. The sooner that you as a homeowner find a leak and resolve it, the better off you’ll be. Your home inspector will look for any signs that unwanted water is coming into your home. Stains on the underside of the roof in the attic are a common giveaway that water is coming in and the issue needs to be investigated further.

Get a Roof Inspection by a Certified Home Inspector
As a homeowner, having the piece of mind that your home is intact and that you are aware of and ready to deal with any issues is invaluable. With a roof inspection as part of your home inspection by a certified home inspector you’ll sleep easy knowing that the roof over your head is sound. If repairs or further inspection is needed consult with a certified roofing contractor.

This sloped shingle roof from a home inspection is missing some shingles in a high wind area. Left unattended to this can be a point of entry for water and may lead to serious damage to the home

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