How to Tell a Roof Needs to Be Replaced or Repaired
Many times, a simple (or not-so-simple) roof repair can ensure a roof continues to provide structural stability and protection for years to come. In other cases, it’s time for a replacement. Any home with an older roof, for example, one that has been in place 15 to 20 years, should consider the upgrades for energy efficiency as well. Homeowners should never allow roofs to deteriorate so much so that they leak or are at risk of tearing off during a wind storm. This creates liability and significant property damage. Instead, know when it’s time to act.
Take a look at some of the most common signs that a roof needs to be replaced rather than repaired.
Weighing the Options
When repairs become necessary, ask a licensed roofing contractor to provide a quote for both the repairs and the replacement of the roof. Here’s why: In some cases, repairs will occur year after year. The cost of replacing the roof may be more affordable than making those repairs just a few years in a row. Though the cost of the roof depends on many factors, it can help to compare both repair and replacement costs carefully before making a buying decision.
Many choose to replace the roof on any residential or commercial structure when a significant number of shingles have damage. Much like mentioned previously, it is a cost-benefit analysis — no two situations are the same, of course, so it’s important to ask for a professional opinion. Notice any areas where the shingle edges are curled specifically. Any cupped shingle tabs are also cause for concern. This often indicates a higher level of damage under the shingles warranting replacement.
Roofs with significant moss growth are at a higher risk of development structural damage. The moss holds moisture against the roof, often causing damage to the shingles (as well as the actual roof structure) over time. Moss growth in small areas can be cleansed away by a professional, but if it covers a significant portion of the roof, that’s likely to be difficult to achieve.
Shingles Are Deteriorating
Many residential roofs have a lifespan of about 20 years. However, this depends on many factors. Lifespans are also dependent on how well the roof was installed, maintained, and updated throughout those 20 years. Instances of cracked shingles, areas of bald spots, or lots of roofing shingle granules in the gutters are all signs that the shingles are deteriorating rapidly. It is possible to replace a few shingles, but when the problem spans much of the roof, it may be best to replace the roof in its entirety instead.
It Looks Old and Sticks Out… and You’d Like to Sell Your Home
If you’re planning on selling your home any time soon, having a brand new roof can oftentimes be a benefit when trying to appeal to buyers. You may have dark streaks on the roof. You may have areas of greening. The roof just may have a worn and dated look to it. While you don’t have to replace a particular worn roof that is still functional, doing so can sometimes boost the value of your home. If the homes around you are replacing roofs with newer, more efficient products, consider the value of doing this as well to drum more buyer interest. It can:
- Add value to your home.
- Help your home to be more efficient.
- Aid in environmental friendly benefits like reducing your energy use.
The roof is one of the most important aspects of the home, and should be treated as such. Think about replacing your home’s roof carefully. With so many products on the market and materials that can span three or more decades, it’s important to do some research to see what will work best for your needs.
Gary Ashton is the CEO and owner of The Ashton Real Estate Group of RE/MAX Advantage. His real estate team is #1 in Tennessee, Nashville and now #4 in the world.