All roofs leak eventually. However home buyers are advised to have a qualified professional inspect the roof, chimneys, skylights, gutters, drains and anything else attached to or penetrating the roof. Particular attention should be paid to the present condition and quality of the roof and the expected useful life of the roof. A qualified professional should be able to estimate how many years a roof has left in its “life”. There are no guarantees with such estimates as tomorrow’s weather can end the life of even the best roof. That said, a new home buyer should understand the probability of whether they will need to incur the cost of a new roof –or perhaps worse the damages caused by an old roof leaking- in the near term following the purchase of their new home.
For home sellers, it is advisable to gauge whether investment in a new roof or repairs to an existing roof will translate either to a higher sale price or a quicker sale of the property. There is no perfect formula for determining this. However you will want to determine the cost of a new roof or repairs to the existing one and compare that to the expected increase in sale price you can expect to derive. Also note that a buyer is likely to inspect the roof regardless of whether it’s brand new or 15 years old. Some home owners will install a lower quality, “cheap” new roof to make the home more “seller friendly”. This may or may not be advisable depending on the property value and the existing real estate market.