Buying a Fixer-Upper? – Make Sure you do a Roof Inspection.
If you’re planning to get onto the property ladder by buying a home in need of renovation or refurbishment, a fixer upper of this sort can represent a sound long-term investment, but there’s likely to be quite a bit of work ahead. This represents a serious investment in terms of both time and money, and the most important factors to consider are the states of both the foundations of the building and the roof. The foundations are what keeps the building stable whilst the roof is what protects the property from the outside world and the ever-changing weather we have in the UK. This is why inspecting the roof is a vital issue when you’re buying any property.
Whether you plan to sell the property once the renovations have been completed, or life in the house yourself, a good roof will add value to any property. A home that’s at risk of leaks, especially during the cold winter, will need continuous repairs, which will cost you more in the long run. This is why investing in a whole new roof may be the most cost-efficient option.
A new roof will make your home more energy efficient too as it’s a key component of your home’s thermal envelope. A robust roof with adequate insulation protects your home from the cold and keeps the heat inside your property – this will also reduce your energy bills, making it easier to heat your home in winter. If you live in a busy or noisy area (especially important if you live near an airport or busy motorway), a solid roof will also help to keep out some of the noise.
When considering buying a run-down home that needs attention, paying special attention to the condition of the roof makes sense. By nature, a fixer upper is likely to have been neglected when it comes to regular maintenance which makes it likely that the roof (one of the most expensive features to maintain adequately) will have been ignored by previous owners.
The best option is to have a professional roofing contractor inspect the roof for signs of damage. If this is not an option, then you can take a look for any obvious problems such as:
- Damaged or missing tiles
- Is the roof sagging?
- Is the guttering firmly fixed in place?
- From the inside, can you see any light coming into the attic space?
- Are there any stains or marks along the top of the interior walls which would suggest leaks in the roof?
If you do intend to replace or repair the roof, bear in mind that this will involve extensive work at height. Even if you’ve undertaken building projects in the past, unless you’re a professional roofing contractor, the work is likely to pose risks that you may not even have considered. Work at height can be dangerous and it’s vital that the right materials, tools and equipment are used and that anybody performing work at height has been comprehensively trained to do so. Engaging the services of a professional roofing contractor is the most sensible option when it comes to any work on the roof.