Roof Inspection Checklist
A roof inspection service consists of two phases: an exterior inspection and an interior inspection. The particulars of each are explained below.
Exterior Roof Inspections
- The inspector completes a walkthrough and checks for any damage to the roof. The condition of the roof covering (that is, whether it is in good shape or needs to be replaced soon) is also checked.
- The roofing and flashing around all roof protrusions such as dormers, skylights, vent pipes, and chimneys are closely inspected for damage and possible leaks.
- A quick check of your exterior chimney system is performed. Note that this is different from an inspection by a licensed chimney professional. A roof inspector can only recommend whether or not you should seek additional advice from a chimney expert.
- Structural damage caused by water, dry rot, or insects, as well as loose nails or screws, are looked for in the roof deck (the wood that the roof covering sits on).
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Roofing Inspection Considerations
Make sure that the roof inspection company that you choose is specifically licensed to give roof certifications. Home and roof certifications are very different things; home inspectors are not as knowledgeable on roof specifics and can’t accurately judge the condition of your roof. While twice yearly roof inspections are recommended by the National Roofing Contractors Association, in areas that don’t receive heavy snowfall, an annual inspection should be sufficient. If you do live in a snowy area, an inspection in the fall ensures that your roof is prepared for the added wintertime weight, while a spring inspection determines how well your roof held up over the cold season. At the end of the job, you will be given a roof inspection report and either a pass/fail grade based on your area’s building codes. The problem(s) preventing a passing grade will be listed alongside any additional actions the roof inspector recommends.
Roof Inspection Costs
Some roof inspections are provided free of charge by the building inspector during new home construction. If you need one for other reasons, there is a relatively minimal fee for the service.
- Most roof inspections cost between $150 and $250 and take 1 to 2 hours to complete. Charges can reach as high as $500 in some cases (such as an unusually large roof with limited access or a particularly time-consuming inspection).
- Expect to pay more for an inspection that requires scaffolding or other safety equipment for access to roof areas.
- If the roof fails inspection, you can usually call the same company back and pay a cheaper re-inspection fee after the necessary repairs have been completed. Re-inspection fees typically don’t run more than $100, but could be higher if there are multiple re-inspection points and accessibility concerns that require safety equipment.
- Most inspectors will check your chimney and gutter systems for damage at no extra cost