You know what's coming, so, come with me up on the roof - and sing with me now!
When this old world starts a getting me down
And people are just too much for me to face --
I'll climb way up to the top of the stairs
And all my cares just drift right into space.
Written by Carole King, "Up On the Roof" was originally performed by The Drifters in 1962. I happen to like the James Taylor version of 1979, but that is just me.
While inspecting this brand-new condo, before the owner has even moved in, I went up on the roof!
Where you just have to wish to make it so
Let's go up on the roof.
It's a flat roof.
The covering is a rubber membrane commonly called EPDM.
It is a Firestone product. The product here will last 20 years or so.
It's a good product when installed right.
That's the key phrase - when installed right.
The seams have to be glued correctly, overlaps well done, the subsurface HAS to be one that accepts the glue and rubber (the biggest mistake on new EPDM roofs), and the roof must be sloped correctly so water does not puddle.
I can't tell any of that at this point as everything up on the roof is too new.
However, I CAN see how much trash has been left on the roof. And trash that includes nails and stones. All of those things can puncture the surface and leaving debris up on the roof, the single-membrane, rubber roof, is a huge, huge no no. And debris can do damage over time.
Certainly there's more debris.
But the bigger issue is the hole. Are you sure there should be such a large hole up on the roof?
That hole is eight bricks high and one brick wide. But hey, it's a darn good thing there's flashing there - high and low! That's a best practice, for sure.
Can water get in? How about birds and bats and lions and tigers and bears?
That tube in the right photo so carefully put together with tape is the dryer vent! Yes, the dryer vent!
Maybe it could double as a spy cam! Up periscope!
Even the grilled end cap is taped on! Oh, and you never have a grill covering the end of a dryer vent as lint will collect there really quickly. Too much lint - too much fire.
That will be one LOOOOOOONG-LAAAAAAASTING installation!
How do you know when the dryer vent is clogged and needs cleaning? You look at it. It is very hard to see when it's up on the roof.
But at least it was spray painted white!
That right smack dab in the middle of town
I found a paradise that's trouble proof
And if this old world starts a gettin you down
There's room enough for two --
Up on the roof ...
I truly am hoping the builder takes care of these things so it's a paradise that's trouble proof up on the roof.
It isn't easy to get to! It's about 14' from floor to the top of the scuttlehole! But if I can do it, he can do it!
My recommendation: new does not equal good. It does when it is checked and determined to be good! But always check! That's where your home inspector comes in! Go getcha one!
And you sang the words, didn't you! You're not up on the roof ... are you?
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC
Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.
Office (703) 330-6388 Cell (703) 585-7560