Assess the Condition of the Roof When Buying a Home

Homes With Colorful Siding

When house hunting, don’t be too quick to buy a house that has all the features you want. First, make sure the home has a strong and sturdy roof before finalizing the sale. If the home doesn’t have a strong roof, this can lead to a number of issues.

Look for Signs of a Damaged Roof

When looking at homes to purchase, keep an eye out for signs of a damaged roof. A damaged roof can decrease the value of a home.


While you are inside of a home, look for stains on the ceilings and walls, which can be signs of water damage. Look out for cracks on the walls as well, which can indicate that either the roof is damaged or the foundation is damaged.

On the outside of the home, look at the gutters and see if they are attached to the home and clean. Walk around the home and try to look at the roof itself. Look for signs of major damage, such as missing shingles, rusted flashing, or amateur-looking patchwork.  

Knowing what to look for can help you avoid putting an offer on a home with a damaged roof. Knowing what to look for will also help you determine if you need a roof inspection instead of just a home inspection.

Get a Home and Roof Inspection

When you purchase a home, a home inspection is a common part of the purchasing process if you are financing the home through a bank. A home inspector’s job is to let you know about any major issues with the house.

When it comes to inspecting the roof, some home inspectors just stand on the ground and look at the roof with binoculars in order to spot major damage, and others actually climb up on the roof to examine it. Either way, keep in mind that home inspectors are not roofing contractors and are just trained to spot major home issues. 

To get a comprehensive idea of the condition of the roof of the home you want to purchase, pay a little extra and have a roofer professionally inspect the roof. A professional roofer can give you an in-depth report on the condition of all elements of the roof, from the shingles to the decking to the flashing and gutter system. A roofing professional can also let you know the life expectancy of the roof.

The roof is responsible for protecting the home, which is why you want to have a solid idea of the condition of the roof before investing in a new home.

Figure Out Repair Costs

If the report from the home inspector or the roofing professional shows the roof is damaged, get a quote for fixing up the roof.

Keep in mind that fixing damage to a roof can run anywhere from a couple of hundred dollars to over ten thousand dollars. Damage tends to be more expensive if the roof has damaged the interior of the home.

Spend Time Negotiating With the Seller

A damaged roof is not a reason to pass up on a home. Use the home inspection, professional roof inspection, and repair quote as a tool in the negotiations process.

If you are purchasing a home in a strong buyer’s market, you may get the homeowner to agree to fix the roof before the sale, or you may be able to get the price of the home reduced in order to account for the repairs you will need to do to the roof.

A damaged roof that a seller will not fix doesn’t mean you need to pass on the home; it just means you need to budget to fix the roof when you purchase the home.

If you have a new home you are interested in purchasing, call D.S. Bahr Construction, Inc., before you finalize the sale. We have experts who can perform a roof inspection, draw up a repair quote, and work with you to fix the roof if you go through with the home purchase.