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Buying a House – Roof Inspection

So you are buying a house. One of the most important things to check out is the roof. After all, the roof is what keeps your house protected from the elements. If the roof isn’t in good condition, it can cause all sorts of problems for you down the road. Even with a home inspection, some things can be overlooked. Be sure to get your home inspected by a reputable, licensed inspector. Make sure he or she checks out the following things regarding your roof.

  • Roof age
  • Roof condition
  • Chimney
  • Gutters and downspouts
  • Ventilation

What is the age of the roof?

A home inspector or a roofing expert should be able to tell you the approximate age of your roof and an estimate of how much life it has left. You should know when you should expect to have to replace your roof. This is not a big-ticket item you want to be surprised with. The previous homeowner and the real estate agent may be able to provide you with the year it was last replaced.

What is the condition of the roof?

This is where a reputable home inspector or roofing expert comes in handy. Weathervane Roofing will provide a roofing inspection for free. We even use drones and cameras so you can see what we see!

How well has the chimney been maintained?

Wear-and-tear from Michigan’s harsh weather conditions will eventually cause moisture damages that will need to be repaired. 

If the chimney has bad mortar joints there may be unwanted water seeping down your chimney. This can result in mold, mildew, and rotting wood if left ignored. You may also see signs of this on the ceiling or walls around the chimney – look for noticeable water stains.

How old are the gutters and downspouts?

Your home’s gutters and downspouts are essential for redirecting water and moisture away from your home’s foundation. Poorly functioning gutters and downspouts are responsible for exterior damage like eroding soil and causing moisture problems like peeling paint and rotted siding, fascias, and soffits.

All gutters (and especially aluminum gutters) can be dented and deformed by impact or excessive pressure. This can result from a branch that falls on a gutter during a storm, or from a ladder leaning against the gutter. Joints in aluminum gutters can develop leaks over time. Check for signs of these things.

Does the roof have proper ventilation?

Proper attic ventilation will save you energy and prevent problems. A roof can look great from the outside, but if there is not enough (or the right kind of) ventilation you know it when it is either hot or cold outside.

Another reason why this is important is that many shingle manufacturers require proper attic ventilation in order for warranties to uphold. So it’s especially important to have this inspected before you buy a house.


If you’re in the market for a new home, be sure to keep your eye on the roof. It may seem like an afterthought, but it’s one of the most important features of the house. The age of the roof, its condition, and whether or not it has a chimney are all things you’ll want to consider when making your purchase. Gutters and downspouts are also crucial; make sure they’re in good condition and that there is proper ventilation. Contact us today if you have any questions about your roof – we would be happy to take a look!

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About Weather Vane Roofing
We provide roofing, siding, insulation, windows, and gutters. Making your house beautiful and efficient is our main goal. We use the latest in technology and products to provide eco-friendly and cost-effective solutions for your home and business. With locations in Lansing, Owosso, and Brighton/Howell we are Mid-Michigan’s roofing experts. Let us transform your house into a home.

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