New Home Buyers: What You Need to Look for in a Roof

Roofing tips when Buying a New Home

Everyone in the market for a new home wants to know that all-important question: how new is the roof? How soon will I have to fork over thousands of dollars to get it replaced if I buy this house?

A new roof can be an instant selling point for your home if you have planned to put it on the market. An updated inspection can also be a great offering for potential buyers. It says the roof is good to go, repairs have been made, and the roof isn’t something you’ll need to worry about for a long time.

But what if you’re looking at a house whose sellers don’t have the incentive to assure buyers in this way?

There are many homes out there on the market that are owned by the bank or by sellers who just want to get their money out of the home and don’t want to pay for work to be done.

Roofing Tips: When Buying a New Home

What are some quick ways to tell how soon you’re going to need to put a roof over the house you are looking at? Here are the top things you should look for in a roof when deciding if you should buy that new home:

Signs of Aging

You can do a quick visual inspection from the ground by looking for these things:

  • Signs of warping or buckling
  • Worn spots
  • Missing shingles
  • Curled edges
  • Mold or mildew

Warping or buckling of the entire roof structure can be a sign that the roof is quite old. Worn spots on the roof or missing shingles that haven’t been replaced can cause problems.

If these problems have gone without being addressed, you may be looking at more serious problems inside, like leaks, and mold. Examine the roof for curled edges of shingles, or shingles that have bulges in them. Additionally, these conditions indicate that the roof is getting past its prime and will need to be replaced soon.

Mold and mildew come in many different colors and shapes: white, green, and black. Often, the more visible mold isn’t always the worst. Mold can hide inside the walls in your home if there’s been a leak or improper ventilation. Be sure to hire a proper inspector before you buy.

Gutter System

You can take a quick look from the ground. Take a look to make sure downspouts are intact and flowing freely if you can.

However, a professional is the only person you should allow on your roof to make sure the entire gutter system is intact and to closely look for warning signs.


Proper ventilation is the number one preventative to a serious mold problem in your house. Make sure the house, has a proper way to let in air and sunlight and that the attic has proper intake and outlet ventilation allowing for proper air circulation. If it doesn’t, it’s like that not only will you find mold, but the roof itself may be prematurely aged.


No one wants a leak in their roof. It’s a sign to even the most inexperienced home owner that something is going terribly wrong. In addition, the worst part is that leaks are often found far away from where the water is coming in.

If you can’t ask the owner if there were any roof leaks, you can do a visual inspection to see if there are any obvious signs of leaks, like stains on the ceiling. Most of the time, leaks occur in valleys, chimney areas, plumbing vents, and flashings. An inspector or roofing contractor will know to look in these areas for signs of leaks.


Every new homeowner should be confident in the soundness of their roof. Take the first step when you look at a home and have the roof examined by a professional for signs of wear, proper ventilation, leaks, and a good drainage system.

Do you live in the Southeast Michigan area? Please give us a call. We would be happy to help.

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