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How to Negotiate a New Roof When Buying a House

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How to Negotiate a New Roof When Buying a House

Whether you’re buying or selling a house, the roof is a big part of the transaction. Buyers want reliable roofs that will last. Sellers don’t want to spend a fortune right before they sell their home.

Who is responsible for the charges if a house needs a new roof? How should you negotiate roof replacement in a house sale? Read on to figure out the right approach for your situation.  

Do You Have to Replace the Roof before Selling Your Home?

Determining whether or not to replace your roof largely depends on the condition of your roof. Technically, you don’t have to replace your roof no matter what. If it’s not in great condition though, the sellers will likely find out or your realtor will be obligated to disclose that information. This could hurt your bottom line.

If your roof is in decent condition and doesn’t need to be replaced right away, you probably don’t need to replace it. If it’s at the end of its life, you can decide whether to potentially sell your house for a lower price or to replace it and maximize your profit. Learn more: How Often Should a Roof Be Replaced?

Other factors that may determine when to replace your roof:

  • How quickly you need to sell your house
  • How much funding you have available for roof replacement
  • The return on a new roof compared to the cost of installation
  • The demand for homes in your area (and the available supply for buyers)
  • The general state of the housing market

Keep in mind that the national average cost for a new roof is $8,000. If having an old roof hurts your home value by $10,000+, it’s worth replacing. If a new roof will only boost the value by $4,000, the return isn’t there. Both buyers and sellers have to find the right balance for their needs.

Who Is Responsible for the New Roof: Buyer or Seller?

There isn’t a designated party responsible for paying for a new roof. A seller can choose to sell a home as-is, and a buyer can choose what they want to pay for that. Some sellers proactively repair their roofs to avoid low offers. Some negotiate a new roof as part of the sales contract, and some price their house based on their roof’s condition. No laws govern which party pays for the roof before or after a sale.

With this in mind, it is customary for a buyer to ask the seller to pay for a new roof, if it needs to be replaced. It’s also common for the parties to agree to partial payment, or an adjustment in who pays the closing costs for the transaction. Assuming there are realtors involved, the real estate agents will negotiate the best possible terms for their respective parties.

The First Step: Get a Roof Inspection

Sellers and buyers can both benefit from getting a roof inspection. If you’re selling your house, a roof inspection would determine if you should replace your roof and if so, what the cost/return would be for that project. If you’re buying a house, a roof inspection will determine if the house is worth the price or if you need to negotiate to cover the cost of a new roof.

McLean Roofing and Siding is here to help, no matter which side of the transaction you represent. To schedule a roof inspection or a quote for a new roof, please call (248) 524-1111.