Roof certification is conducted by a licensed roofer who inspects the roof to assess its condition. Typically, this inspection is performed on the exterior as well as the interior of the roof. The inspector takes down information as well as photographs from a variety of angles to determine if there are leaks or other damage and then gives you an estimate on the state of the roof.

This process is helpful for people who are looking at purchasing a new home and don’t want to get stuck with expensive roofing repairs in a year.

Keep in mind. However, a roof certification isn’t a guarantee, but rather the opinion of the roofer you hired to do the job. Two different roofing contractors may give two different opinions regarding the state of your roof, so be aware of that fact when deciding whether or not to pay for the service.

When to Get a Roof Certification

When you’re in the market for a new home, one thing you’re going to want to know is how stable is the roof of the house you’re looking to purchase. The last thing you want is to buy a home and to find out a year later that the roof leaks and is need of replacement.

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You should know that in many cases, a roof inspection isn’t included in the routine inspection of the house, and the condition of the roof may not be written down in your contract, and depending on where you live, your seller may not have to repair the roof before selling you the home.

Having said all that, a roofing certification isn’t always necessary. For example, depending on the market and your need to buy a home, you might find your dream property that happens to have a shoddy roof. If the price is right, then you might forego the roofing certification and just factor in a new roof to your budget. If, on the other hand, the market favors the buyer, you can opt for a roofing certification in the event that you might find an issue, which can drive down the price.

Another thing to keep in mind is that, in some cases, your homeowner’s insurance company may require you to get a roofing certification before they issue you a policy for the home you’re purchasing.

Do You Really Need a Roof Certification?

As mentioned above, you don’t need a roofing certification, however, it can be a good idea to get one to assess the state of the roof and let you know if you’re going to have to begin saving for a new roof now or if it’s something you can put off until later. Also, as stated, a roofing certification isn’t a guarantee, it’s an opinion of the particular contractor you hired to do the job. While one contractor might tell you the roof has a good three to five years left, another one might see things differently and suggest that you replace the roof as soon as possible.

In many cases, getting a roof certification is like getting a diagnosis from a doctor; you may want to get a second opinion just to be sure, especially when you’re talking about the expense of putting on a new roof.

How Do Roofing Certifications Work?

When you hire a roofer to perform a roofing certification, they’ll consider a variety of factors to determine whether or not your roof is in good shape and will stand up over time. Your roofer will look at:

  • The type of roof and materials used
  • How old is the roof
  • The roof’s pitch
  • How many layers are involved
  • Any prior roofing repairs
  • All of this information will be documented along with photographs of any problem areas that go into the contractor’s final determination.

Benefits of a Roof Certification

So, you don’t always need a roofing certification, and getting one is no guarantee that the roof is going to last as long as the inspector says, however, there are many benefits to getting one.

  • Detect Water Damage It’s tough to tell just by looking at the exterior of the roof whether there’s been any water damage, but a good inspector will see it and let you know if it’s going to involve a major or minor repair to fix it.
  • Saves Money Although you’re going to be shelling out money for the cost of hiring a roofing inspector, it’s peanuts when compared to the money you can save by detecting small problems before they become big, expensive fixes down the road.
  • Provides Protection As stated, getting a roofing certification gives you a degree of protection should it come time to file a roofing claim with your homeowner’s insurance company. Also in that regards, if you’ve been through a rough storm that’s caused damage to your home, a roofing certification will prove beneficial when dealing with your insurance company because you’ll have an expert’s idea of just how severe the damage is.
  • Extends Roof’s Lifespan It’s a good idea to have regular inspections performed on your roof because it allows you to find problems and fix them quickly. Little issues like broken shingles or water damage can be repaired relatively inexpensively, but if you let them go, they can become much more expensive to fix down the road.

What a Roofing Certification Isn’t

It’s important to keep in mind that a roofing certification isn’t a guarantee or a warranty on your roof — it’s just a person’s opinion. Remember that just because you have a roofing certification that says your roof is good for another three years, your roofing contractor likely won’t honor that if your roof suffered damage due to a natural disaster or damage caused by a worker installing a satellite dish.

A roofing certification is an excellent way to give you an idea as to the state of the roof, and it’s a quick and relatively inexpensive process that you should consider when you’re looking at purchasing a new home.

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