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Buying a New Home? Check the Roof

Buying a new home is likely the largest single investment you will ever make. As such, to make a successful purchase, make sure you buy a house that is sound inside and out. If a home’s roof has any existing issues, repairs will likely be expensive, so you should know what you are getting into. Before you purchase your dream home, check its roof for the following problems.


With proper care and maintenance, a basic roof should last for 30 years or longer. The type of roofing material used in a roof depends on how long the structure should last:
  • Metal: Up to 60 years
  • Asphalt: 20 years or longer
  • Wood shingles: 20 years
  • Slate and tile: 100 years
An older roof will need replacing, which varies in cost depending on the style of roof you upgrade to. A metal roof, for example, can cost several thousands of dollars, while a simple shingled roof will cost much less. Ask the current homeowner how long their current roof has been in place, along with a request for any proof of repairs over the years. Call a roofing expert to fully inspect a home with an older roof that has not been updated past the length of time the materials are expected to last.


A leaking roof is a potentially dangerous and expensive home repair that you should be aware of prior to buying a new home. A roof that has leaked in the past may leave behind stains in the ceilings of the home or a mold and mildew odor in the attic. Insulation may also be damaged. Read the fine print of your purchase agreement to learn if the home has a roof leak. If the homeowner has disclosed the home has leaking issues, any repairs needed to make the home livable will be your responsibility, not the current owners. The best way to see how bad the damage is (and what is causing the leaks in the first place) is to call a professional roofing contractor to inspect the home’s roof and give you a detailed report.


A neglected roof should be easy to spot: missing shingles, bent metal panels, hanging and bent gutters, and missing roof caps are all signs a homeowner has neglected their roof. Since the roof is a vital part of the home and repairs are expensive, pay close attention to the current condition of a home’s roof if you’re interested in buying it. Only buy the home if the current homeowner agrees to repair or replace the current roof with a contractor you trust. Or you can negotiate a cheaper price for the home that allows you to make home repairs yourself. Your roofing contractor will give you an estimate for repairs to help you come up with a fair price for the home. You can also consult your real estate agent and lawyer when choosing a price. Never buy a home without having the roof of the property professionally inspected. Most homes have a private inspection done by a city inspector prior to finalizing sales, but you shouldn’t rely on the assurances of a home inspector that an existing older roof is in good condition. Instead, hire a roofing company you trust to perform a private inspection for your peace of mind. If you do need a new roof on the home you want to buy, you have many materials to choose from. Your contractor will help you find the best roofing solution for your new home. Call our team of roofing specialists at Ray’s Harford Home Improvement Contractors Inc. for all your roofing needs.

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