It started small, but with a little crack here, separation there, or small hole, it ended up with the battle of the bulge - due to deferred maintenance.
HOME MAINTENANCE PROBABLY COSTS ABOUT 1% OF THE VALUE OF THE HOME EVERY YEAR.
I have heard that, but don't know if it's accurate. Home maintenance includes everything - a new rose bush or tree, painting the bedroom, replacing the carpet in the basement, or fixing the garage door spring.
One year a homeowner might decide to do things, or need to do things, that add up to more than 1%. And the next two years maybe nothing is done. But in the long run, that 1% maintenance expenditure is probably close to accurate.
This house is only 13 years old.
The slightly-inclined, but considered flat, front porch roof is covered with a synthetic rubber called EPDM.
EPDM stands for Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer (M Class). It is a product produced by Firestone.
There are two thicknesses - 60mil and 90mil. The 90mil is what you would see on top of commercial buildings. It is rarely used on residential homes.
The 60mil product only has about a 10 year life span when it gets direct sun for a lot of the day.
This porch roof gets sun from noon until the end of the day, the hottest sun exposure.
It was installed improperly, glued directly onto the Oriented Strand Board roof underlayment. That is a HUGE NO NO.
When it is not so dramatically exposed to sun and when installed correctly the 60mil product can last about 20 years.
Gluing is critical. Gluing is critical on the underlayment; gluing is critical at the edges; gluing is critical under things like those guardrail posts, which CANNOT be toe nailed as an "attachment;" incline is critical so that water does not pond.
This roof was not installed correctly. It was ignored by the homeowner(s). It was left to fend for itself.
IT WAS DOOMED TO FAIL.
And it has. Many photos could be shown to demonstrate how damaged this roof is. Some of the damage can be seen underneath, and on the edge. Certainly the roofing surface has warped dramatically.
Now my client has a lot to do. This front porch roof is a start-at-the-beginning-and-build-a-new-roof roof.
AND THAT IS ONLY ONE OF THE MANY ASPECTS OF DEFERRED MAINTENANCE ON THIS HOUSE.
My recommendation: home maintenance is an annual affair. A checklist for each season is good, and I have posted many of those. BUT WHEN IT COMES TO BRINGING A HOUSE BACK TO A PROPER CONDITION AFTER SERIOUS DAMAGE HAS OCCURRED, DEFERRED MAINTENANCE COSTS MORE THAN THE 1% REGULAR MAINTENANCE IT WOULD HAVE COST TO PREVENT THAT SERIOUS DAMAGE.
So look around, keep lists and stay current. And your house will love you for it.
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC
Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.
Office (703) 330-6388 Cell (703) 585-7560