Roofs are crucial components of buildings because of the functions they perform. They shelter the structure from harsh environmental elements such as extreme wind, sun, or rain. They also boost the property’s curb appeal and attract tenants.
Like every other component of a property, the roof requires scheduled maintenance. As a landlord, failure to do this may result in crucial issues that can cause you to lose rental income. You do not want your tenants to complain of a leaking roof. Leaky roofs can lead to water damage and the resulting consequence that may render the property unfit for habitation.
Poor roof maintenance can reduce your roof’s lifespan, compromise the property’s structure, or void the rental’s warranty. Your rental property’s roof may deteriorate if:
- There is excessive rainfall to the extent that the roof cannot handle the weight. That can lead to water pooling or leaks.
- There is poor roof installation such that it develops faults in a short time and reduces its lifespan.
- The roof’s age is above its lifespan. Every roof has its lifespan. The roof starts to deteriorate once it passes its viability period.
- Storm or strong wind stresses it to the point that it weakens and starts to leak.
- Excessive tree/plant foliage over the roof causing build up of moisture.
Roof replacements can be expensive. Some landlords often aim to reduce operating costs and maximize income. A neglected roof will cost more money in the long run. Prolonged leakage causes the wood underneath the roofing materials to rot. When you finally decide to replace the roof, the professionals will have to replace the bad wood first before installing new roofs according to the building codes. The longer you neglect your roof, the more wood you will have to replace. As a result, you will end up spending more money.
For this reason, we will discuss some rental property roof maintenance tips. These guidelines will help to prolong your roof’s life expectancy and reduce expenditure.
Roof maintenance tips for landlords
- Inspect the rental’s roof regularly
Regular inspection is the best way to protect your roof from developing extensive faults. We recommend that you conduct a scheduled and periodic assessment of the roof. Doing so will help you detect issues and handle them early. Early detection and repair will prevent the problem from becoming severe to the point that it becomes expensive.
It is best to invite professionals for your roof inspection. That is because experts have a checklist for the procedure.
Also, they do not walk on top of the roof. Amateurs may miss some vital aspects or walk on the rooftop and damage it during the inspection. For safety reasons, we always recommend that you invite a professional to go up and inspect the roof, especially if it is a two-story or steep.
When experts inspect your roof, they look for the following:
- Lose, damage, or missing flashing.
- Blocked, rusty, or sagging gutters.
- Organic growth such as mildew, mold, or moss.
- Exposed or missing roof fasteners.
- Bald spots from excessive shading of granules.
- Missing or damaged shingles.
The presence of any of these signifies that your roof requires urgent attention.
- Trim nearby trees
Trees are beneficial, but sometimes they can cause issues to your rental property’s roof. Overhanging tree branches may break off and fall on the roof to damage it. Sometimes, fallen leaves may clog the gutters. In addition, overhanging tree branches can rub on the roof to cause leaks. Rodents may use tree branches as a route to access your roof, nest in it, and cause extensive damage.
For these reasons, we advise that you trim your trees. You may hire arborists because they have more experience in these.
- Clean the gutters
Roof gutters are vital because they channel water away from the roof and protect the building from erosion, water damage, or mold. An obstruction or clogging of the roof gutters can cause damage to the roof, landscape, siding, or foundation. However, you can always clean the gutters and unclog them. Ensure that you remove all the debris and leaves from the gutters. You can do this using a ladder, shovel, and plastic scoops.
- Remove moss and algae
Growths on the roof can weaken it, rot wood, corrode metals, and cause leaks. Mold and algae damage the structural integrity of the roof. It would be best to remove them. To do these, you can invite professionals to scrub them off your roof with their hands or power wash the roof to remove the growths.
The bottom line: Rental Property Roof Maintenance Tips for Landlords
You can approach your rental property’s roof maintenance in two ways:
- Corrective roof maintenance
- Preventive roof maintenance
It is corrective or reactive when you wait for issues to happen before you repair. However, we recommend preventive maintenance. Here, you take steps to prevent problems from occurring. In all, it is essential to always seek the services of professionals during roof maintenance.
When meeting with the roofing professional, it’s important that the property owner is present for the estimate, not the tenant. Roofing professionals need the responsible person present to understand options and services required and to make the decision.