It’s one of those things that costs real money to address, yet does very little for your home’s curb appeal. But if your roof is showing signs of weakness, you’ll have to decide whether you want to a) invest hard-earned cash to fix the problem, or b) cross your finger and hope for the best.
Finding the answer to this question depends on a number of key factors. For example, can the problem be solved by upgrades or simple maintenance, or is it time for a brand new roof? How bad is the existing problem, and how bad could things get if you don’t take action now?
First off, there’s every reason for optimism. It’s entirely possible that you don’t need a brand new roof. If you do, you’re probably looking at an investment $5,000 – $8,000. This certainly isn’t chump change, but it could be a lot worse considering the importance of a strong and functional roof.
You can also take solace in the fact that a new roof will almost certainly add value to your home. So if you’re thinking of selling in the foreseeable future, this worse-case scenario could actually help you when it comes time to close the deal.
But let’s return to the original question: Should you invest in new roofing?
If your roof is sagging in one or more places, the structural integrity is compromised and should be addressed as soon as possible. If you have discoloration or dark spots in your roof, this is strongly indicative of water damage that could also jeopardize the interior of your home. Visible light shining into your living room, or leakage during heavy rains? Yes—these are definitely signs that your roof may need to be replaced, or at least repaired.
Basically, if there’s a problem, you’ll know about it.
There are also cases where the need to replace or repair your roof is only obviously on closer visual inspection. You might notice debris in certain areas where shingles and other material has broken up due to age or poor quality. This is not uncommon in a place like New Jersey, or other areas with four distinct seasons. The elements (rain, heat, cold, heavy blankets of snow) can be punishing for roofs—especially those that are too old, were not properly installed, or consist of poor quality materials.
What’s the next step?
Unless you’ve got knowledge and experience when it comes to assessing and repairing roofs, you’ll probably want to bring a professional in to look at the problem. The good news is that this costs very little—often nothing—and allows you to get an expert opinion on: 1) what’s happening with your roof now, 2) how the situation will progress, and 3) what solutions are available and how much they cost. Then you’ll be able to proceed with confidence, knowing that your roofing situation was properly assessed before you made any big decisions.
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