Selling a House That Needs a New Roof, Is It Possible?

Selling a house that needs a new roof in Utah is easier than you think. If you’re in this situation, read on to see how to go about selling a house with a bad roof.

Types of Roofs and Lifespan

types of roofs, selling a house with a damaged roof


The lifespan and durability of your roof depends on the type of material your roof is made of. The most common roofing material in Utah is asphalt shingles. This roofing material is made of a composite of fiberglass or felt paper base coated with a water proof layer of asphalt, topped with ceramic granules. These types of roofs have a lifespan of approximately 20 years. Asphalt is very fire retardant which makes them a great choice for roofing material. The popularity of this type of roof is largely due to the cost, they are currently the most affordable roofing option on the market. With proper care and maintenance this type of roof could last up to 30 or 40 years, however they do not hold up well in areas with high wind and areas prone to thunderstorm or hail, all of which can lead to loose shingles, potential leaking and roof damage.


Another roofing material that is more often seen in commercial or industrial buildings is made of metal. These roofs are low maintenance and lightweight and environmentally friendly. The cost of a metal roof will be much higher than asphalt but they do resist wear and tear from weather much better. Metal roofs generally last from 40-70 years though they aren’t impervious to damage from water leaks at weak areas where there are screws or overlapping metal. And some Utah residents complain about house noisy metal roofing can be when strong rain or hail storms happen.

Slate Tile

Slate or tile shingles give a home a high-end appeal and are known for their fire resistance and durability. Slate naturally resists high winds, heavy wind and hail and have a lifespan of up to 100 years! The drawback to slate tiles is the weight, they are quite heavy. Another drawback is the cost, not only the cost of the product, but the cost of the installation.

What Causes Roof Problems

common causes of roof damage


If you’ve run into roof problems there could be a variety of reasons, the first of which is likely due to age. If you have an asphalt shingle roof then the shingles may be getting old, weak and brittle and in need of an entire roof replacement. Roof problems can also stem from lack of upkeep and repair, paving the way for more severe damage. Taking the time to annually sweep off the roof and clear the gutters and downspouts are simple preventative measures for putting a stop to roof problems.

Snow and Ice

The weather also plays a role in roof damage, water and cold temperatures common to central and northern Utah, can wreak havoc on a roof. Through the winter snow and ice thaw and refreeze in fluctuating temperatures and as that snow melts water can seep into small holes in your roof, only to freeze again, expanding and ripping larger holes in your roof. Those holes created by freezing and thawing snow and ice create weak spots where more water can enter during the next thaw. In general a roof should be able to hold the weight of 4 feet of snow, but an older roof might not be able to handle that much.

Wind and Storms

Heavy winds, thunderstorms, hailstorms and hurricanes will all put your shingles to the test. Consider having your roof inspected after a major storm to stay on top of any small damage that could become big damage in the long run.

High Temperatures

Heads up southern Utah, UV light and high heat do effect your roof. Having a well ventilated and insulated attic will go a long way to reducing the problem.

Poor Installation

Unfortunately your roof problems could stem from an improper install. If you try to put roofing over old shingles, or fail to use underlayment and proper flashing you’re going to have leak problems sooner or later.

Common Problems From a Bad Roof

selling a house as is with roof damage

The single most common roof problem is going to be a leak. The leak could stem from cracked flashing or broken shingles being likely. Leaks often occur near a chimney or any opening in your roof such as skylights and vents, under damaged shingles, and in low spots or valleys. You’ll know you have a roof problem when you see signs of a leak including discolored ceilings or damp walls.

Another indicator of a bad roof is pooling water on the roof. This is a particular worry with flat roofs. Potential home buyers will be able to see or have it show up on a home inspection if your roof is missing shingles or asphalt shingles are nearly bare of the ceramic granules.

Cost of Repairing Roof Problems

Cost of repairing a roof due to a leak varies widely based on materials and severity of the damage. If the leak is noticeable inside your home then this will affect your potential selling price because the cost of repair will be inside and outside the home. A bad roof could mean damage in the attic in the sheetrock and insulation and possibly even electrical problems. If the problem isn’t addressed in a timely manner it can run through the walls and into light fixtures, causing more problems that need repair.

If your home is in need of an all-new roof the cost goes up even more. Using an online roof estimate calculator or contacting a roofing professional can give you an idea of how much money you would need to shell out to replace your roof before selling your home.

Should I Repair the Roof Before Selling

Choosing to repair or replace a roof before selling will always mean a higher selling price however many sellers don’t have the cash to make repairs up front. A potential home buyers would be required to purchase homeowners insurance on a damaged roof and the roof might not get coverage if the roof is too old or damaged. Roof damage is likely to scare off a lot of traditional home buyers because of the stress and money involved with roof repairs. If you don’t have the capital to fix the roof yourself before listing the home you would want to consider a house buying company so you don’t have to sell the house for a loss. Companies that purchase houses in as-is condition are used to dealing with repairs and can give you a fair offer on your home.

If you decide to sell your home with damage, reach out to a us. We are a non-traditional buyer and your top rated, local Utah house buying company! We will buy your house in any condition, saving you the fuss of making the home repairs yourself, while trusting you’ll get an honest and stress-free cash offer on your home.


I was a part owner in an electrical contracting firm in the late 1990’s and started to get interested in real estate around 2001. My business partner and I bought our first rental property in 2002. From there we did several real estate transactions until we decided to close the electrical business and part ways. In 2009 I started Gary Buys Houses which is owned by my wife, Eileen, and I. I felt like I could offer one on one personal service to people that wanted to sell their house quickly or not worry about repairs and such. Today, I have built a reputation of being fair and honest with people no matter their situation, so the business continues to help people and be successful. I have been married for 34 years, and have one son, two step sons and 4 grandchildren. I like to travel and spend time in Southern Utah exploring.

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