Sagging roof, need advice.

Old 10-30-04, 05:44 AM
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Sagging roof, need advice.

Hello all new member here and need some advice.

Im in the process of buying my first home. The other day we had an inspector out and went over the house. One of the major problems he pointed out was slight sag in the rear part of the roof. After the inspector was done we faxed a copy of the report to the owner.

The roof was replaced back in may as per the owner. The home is vacant at the moment and the owner pretty much refuses to here there is a sag. The contractor who replaced the roof guaranties the work for 25 years.

Now the owner and realtor wants my wife and I to have an roofer come out and inspect the roof and write a report/letter exspressing on wether or not there is a problem. I dont see the point? The sag is obvious. Why should I have to pay a few hundred bucks for a roofing expert to come out just to tell me that yes there is a problem when I already know this. The realtor clearly see's the sag but yet they suggest we hire another inspector. Im no expert but from what I can tell it needs a sister joice(spelling). Not sure what that would cost but I refuse to pay it.

My wife and I are set on buying this house but not if the owner refuses to fix the sagging roof.

What should we do?
Old 10-30-04, 08:59 AM
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I would tell them you want $15,000 or so reduction in price on the house due to outstanding issues as noted in the report. It might get there attention a bit faster when it looks like the price is going down. You don't mention the age of the house or the amount of sagging roofline.
Old 10-30-04, 04:15 PM
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Thanks for the reply. The house is roughly 60 years old. Not sure how to explain how bad the sagging is.

Im now told only sections of the roof were replaced. Apparently this section is not apart of the section that was repaired. Im guessing now their going to tell me that it's not covered under warranty.
Old 10-31-04, 05:25 PM
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Sagging roof

Sometimes folks use attic areas for storage when joists and/or truss systems will not support weight. A sagging roof can result from the extra weight.

Sagging roof sections can lead to leaks and deck damage due to high moisture. Sagging roof beams can indicate structural failure, and be much more expensive to repair. Sag could also be secondary to previous leaks under shingles. Shingles do not waterproof a roof system, their purpose is to shed water. A sagging roof can mean major structural repairs; get an estimate from a reputable contractor. A sagging roof can sometimes be repaired by jacking and bracing.

You don't need an inspector to tell you that you have a sag, you need a building contractor who can go into the attic and tell you what is going on with the structure and an estimate for cost of repairs.

Sagging between supports sometimes occurs because panels are too thin or have moisture-related problems. If sagging occurs in random locations, spot replacement of panels or installation of "H"-clips between panels at midspan locations is common. When sagging between supports is extreme and widespread, replacement of all existing panels may be necessary. This condition does not necessarily mean the panels are structurally impaired. Installing new panels over sagging ones is not a good idea. Sometimes panels are removed and support blocks installed and panels reinstalled with H-clips in midspan is done, but this tends not to be a common practice.

Sometimes panels ridge at seams and results in sagging between supports when panels have been installed without leaving the recommended expansion gap (1/8") so panels can expand and contract without binding as temperature and humidity levels change. Leaking shingles and moisture can also cause ridging. Tight joints can be opened with power saw, but panel replacement is usually necessary because of the sag.

Excessive moisture from roof system leaks or inadequate ventilation can create soft, wet panels that sag. In this case, panels may be rotten and will need replacement. Make sure you have adequate attic ventilation. If reroofing, check with local building inspector what current Code requirements are for attic ventilation in new construction and bring the old house up to Code.

Inspect attic for signs of mildew, mold, or wood fungus. Look for staining. Mold & mildew can be removed by disinfecting with bleach/water solution. But if roofing panels have lost structural integrity to wood fungus decay, they will need to be replaced.

You say the roof was replaced in May and repairs made "in sections." Does this mean that certain panels were replaced before reroofing? Perhaps they overlooked a section of panels that need replacing? If the homeowner went with a roofing contractor that was licensed and insured, then the homeowner should call the roofing company, as you say he guarantees work for 25 years. Is that the roofer's guarantee or the shingle guarantee? Do you have a copy of the roofer's contract and the product warranty? Are they transferrable to new owner. Often, roofing and shingle warranties are not transferrable to new owner.

The manufacturer provides long term guarantees. They are guaranteeing the shingle, not the installation. Shingles rarely fail unless something was done wrong in the installation or there is some kind of natural disaster. In either case, the manufacturer won't be responsible and the odds of you collecting anything are slim to none. Besides, you have little chance of collecting on a guarantee unless you successfully keep track of the shingle type, manufacturer, installer and all the relevant paperwork for many years-something few people do successfully. However, the manufacturer's guarantee is a reasonable gauge of their confidence in the shingle. So if the manufacturer has one product with a 15-year guarantee and another with a 30-year guarantee, you have a pretty good picture of the relative durability of the two shingles. However, the best shingles in the world are a complete waste of money if you don't have them installed by a truly competent roofer. And if roofer installed over poor roofing deck and sag without replacement, then I would have my doubts about getting the roofer to correct this problem.

As indicated, if you really want the house and are willing to take on the problems of the roof and others associated with a 60-year-old home, then offer a lower price. Of course, homeowners want to sell and get out. The mentality is to sell as is. Thus, they may be willing to negotiate on the price because they just want to get rid of the property as it is empty. Offering $15,000 less may just work. But, more than likely there will be a counter offer. That is why you need to know how much it is going to cost to repair the roof.

Especially in older homes, a professional inspection by a reputable home inspector may prove to be invaluable. Yes, you will buy the house "as is" but you will know what you need to repair. These factors may be helpful in renegotiating the price. Most roofers remove & replace shingles or decking material as needed. They tend not to get into structural repairs such as sistering joists. Again, get an evaluation from a licensed and insured building contractor.
Old 11-04-04, 04:17 PM
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wow....yeah that about covers it
good job twelvepole...

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