Insurance companies and lenders are both developing "keener eye sight" when it comes to roof conditions. Time was...when a house had a roof, that seemed to be enough to satisfy everyone...a loose shingle here or there was easily replaced.That was then...this is now. In Wisconsin, the most common shingle material is asphalt or what is generally referrred to as "composition."
There are a few subdivisions where cedar shake shingles were required and still are but they are seldom seen here in new construction.
A homeowner may or may not know the age of a roof if they did not build it or replace it. A home inspector can estimate the age given that it is snow/ice covered in which case he will have a disclaimer in his report that the roof could not be inspected due to weather conditions.
There are different grades of composition shingles, the higher the "number of years" ...the thicker the shingle, the longer it should last.
Homeowners' insurance is of course required by every lender. One of the first questions an insurance company will ask a prospective client is: "How old is the roof ?" Age is not always an indication of condition. Younger roofs can be in better condition than older ones....thicker materials, more sun, no ice dams or hale storms...lots of conditions play into the length of the life of a roof.
We operate as a team in our practice. We always say David, who has a background in construction, will tell if you the walls are straight....and Sally will tell you what color to paint them....it works for us and our clients...we are from the "know what you don't know" school.
We recently had an insurance agent tell a client that he would have to have any roof inspected by their company if it was over 15 years old. That seems a bit extreme ...and was of course frightening to the client.
Replacing a roof is one of those expenses that belongs in the "maintenance budget" for every homeowner. Best to have a qualified inspector or roofer who is not just interested in selling replacement roofs...estimate the life of the roof...not an insurance person who has never seen the house.
Can a bad roof mean no insurance or no mortgage loan ? Yes it can. If the Seller is unable or unwilling to replace it, this can present a problem. There are a variety of loans from a 203K to others that lender may offer to allow the Buyer to wrap the cost of roof replacement into the mortgage.
'Rough roof ? Be sure you seek out the expertise of the highest and best source of information and not an estimate given from behind a desk.
If you or anyone you know is looking for Realtors in southeastern Wisconsin with expertise to guide you in selling and buying a home from the roof to the foundation...call the Hansons, we are honored to be of assistance.