Have you found the perfect home, but it’s an existing one that needs a roof? Buying a house that needs a new roof can be challenging for a homebuyer. But knowing what to expect will help you feel more confident navigating the process.  

Tips for Buying a House that Needs a New Roof

Purchasing a home can be a complicated, confusing, and chaotic undertaking. But buying a house that needs a new roof could complicate matters more. But it doesn’t have to be a deal breaker. If the home you’re purchasing needs a roof replacement, the best time to do that is at the closing table. But there are some caveats you need to know. 

Can I get a mortgage on a house that needs a new roof? 

Different situations can lead to different answers. 

When purchasing a home, you must have an active homeowner’s policy that takes effect on the closing date. Getting a mortgage on a home needing a new roof only affects you if your insurance company refuses to cover the home until repairs or replacements are completed. 

What happens if my roof inspector sees roof damage?

Standards of Practice do not require a home inspector to walk on the roof to examine the roof. Instead, they inspect it from the ground. which means they will likely only see very serious roof damage. If they do, get a professional roof inspection. 

Generally, if the damage is bad enough to see from the ground, you won’t be able to get insurance or a mortgage until the roof repair or roof replacement is complete. 

Should I ask for a roof inspection before closing?

You should get a roof inspection before closing, especially if the roof is older or you suspect damage. You may even be able to get the seller to pay for it, as well as complete the repair before closing. Or, if you prefer to have the roof repair done yourself, you can negotiate the home’s price based on the roof replacement or repair cost. Talk to your insurance company about when they require it to be done for coverage to begin. 

What should I expect from a roof inspection?

If you suspect roof issues and request a roof inspection, you can expect a quality roof inspection to include

    • Getting on the roof. A quality roof inspector will walk every inch to determine if anything needs to be repaired or replaced. 
    • Inspecting flashing and seals are in good shape to protect the home from leaks.
    • Examine the home’s interior and exterior and any previously repaired areas. 
    • Determining if current or prior leaks have caused any water or structural damage.
    • Check for the appropriate shingles and that they were installed correctly. 

What happens if the home fails the roof inspection?

Not passing a roof inspection will make it difficult to get homeowner insurance. All lenders require proof of homeowners insurance. So, if you can’t secure homeowners coverage, you can’t close on the home until you do. 

That doesn’t mean all is lost. The sale can go through once you nail down who is responsible for the cost of the roof replacement or repairs. But, your homeowner’s policy won’t be active until the work is done. 

How can I tell if the house I’m buying needs a new roof?

Here are some easy ways to tell if the house has roof damage that needs repair or replacement immediately.

  • As for home maintenance records to determine the roof’s age. A roof that is 10-15 years old will more likely need to be replaced.
  • Check the gutter and downspouts for asphalt granules from deteriorating shingles.
  • Find out what the current flashing materials are. You should consider replacing the flashing with metal for durability and protection if it’s tar or cement. 
  • Look for signs of moss, displaced or warped shingles, or obvious roof sagging. If you find any of these, replace the roof.
  • Inspect the ceilings and room corners inside the home. discoloration or stains are a good sign of leaks and hidden water damage. 

Are you buying a house that needs a new roof? Do you need a thorough roof inspection? Contact Perry Roofing Company to schedule an inspection and estimate.