Buying A Home?
Home Roof Inspections


A home inspection can tell a lot about the condition of a roof. It should be something homebuyers require, whether building a new house (a new construction inspection checks for builder errors, omissions, or defects) or making an offer on an existing house. Even if a home inspection is not required by the municipality, it’s worth the money to have it done because what it might reveal could ultimately end up costing you a lot more.



Among the many interior and exterior areas the home inspector examines is the roof. A home inspection includes the following roof components:

  • Roof covering material;
  • Roof framing, sheathing and decking;
  • Roof fascias and soffits;
  • Roof flashing that is visible;
  • Roof ventilation;
  • Attic insulation;
  • Roof accessories, such as roof skylights, that are visible from the outside;
  • Gutters and downspouts.

The home inspection report will describe the type of roofing system and gutter and downspout system, making note of the observed condition of the roofing components listed above. It will also have a description of the type of roofing material that comprises the roof structure, as well as its visible condition. Any indication of water penetration will be noted.

In addition to the roof on the house, the home inspector also checks the roofing on attached garages or carports. Its type of roofing and roofing material will be indicated on the inspection report as well.


A home inspection has limitations in how the roof is inspected. For example, inspectors are not required to walk atop the roof if it is not internally accessible or if they think it is unsafe or may damage the roofing material. Nor will home inspectors remove debris, snow, ice, or other obstructions that block their observation of the roof’s surface.

Usually, a home inspection of the roof is done from the ground using binoculars. As such, a home inspector is not required to:

  • Inspect roof attachments, like antennas or lightning arresters;
  • Operate powered roof ventilation to see if it’s working properly;
  • Determine whether the roof ventilation is adequate;
  • Check for the presence of hail damage or manufacturer or installation defects;
  • Indicate the number of roofing layers;
  • Determine the remaining life expectancy of the roof;
  • Inspect internal gutter and downspout systems.

For a more thorough inspection of the roof, a roof certification can be ordered through a licensed and certified roofing company. For example, Maxx Roofing is a licensed residential and commercial roofing company.

A roof certification is conducted from the top of the roof, examining roofing components more in-depth and evaluating aspects of the roof’s performance. A roof certification will give you a report on the:

  • Presence of any movement of the roof;
  • Condition of the roof and roofing shingles;
  • Condition of flashing around roof vents, pipes, valleys, chimneys and HVAC mountings;
  • Condition of ridges, drip edges and caps;
  • Performance of drains, gutters and downspouts;
  • Estimated lifespan left on the roof.

Photos from different angles are also included with a roof certification report. A roofing certification either indicates repairs that are needed or certifies that the roof is free of defects and will perform as it should under normal conditions during the period of time indicated on the certification. This time period varies depending on the municipality where the home is located.


When you obtain the home inspection report, review it carefully for major defects, required repairs and replacement requirements, paying close attention to the roofing section. If the home inspection or roof certification identifies serious roofing problems, you have five options available to you before purchasing your new home.

  1. Ask the seller to fix the roof problems.
  2. Request that the seller lower the price of the house based on the amount it will cost to fix the identified problems.
  3. Ask the seller for a cash credit submitted at the closing so you can arrange to have the problems fixed.
  4. Accept the house “as-is.”
  5. Back out of the sale as allowed under the inspection contingency in the real estate purchasing contract.

Whatever roofing concerns or questions you may have during the home buying process, never hesitate to contact Maxx Roofing. With us, you can always count on an honest and unbiased roof assessment.


Maxx Roofing & Construction

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Call: (918) 893.9595