The UK has been hit by 10 storms in the current storm season

Experts reveal the best ways to deal with unsatisfactory roof repairs

James Carter
Authored by James Carter
Posted: Wednesday, March 6, 2024 - 15:19

The UK has been hit by 10 storms in the current storm season - the quickest succession since 2015 - leaving property owners at a higher risk of issues with their roofs, if they’re not well maintained. 

But property owners could end up with even bigger issues if repair work carried out on their roof isn’t done properly. 

Damage caused by wear and tear isn’t typically covered by home insurance, so home and property owners must maintain their roofs with professional, satisfactory work to avoid costly damages or further repairs. 

The experts at home insurance, offer tips on what to do if you’re a victim of unsatisfactory roof work: 

If any completed work is unsatisfactory, you should get in touch with the contractor straight away. This gives them the opportunity to rectify the issue. It’s important that you keep a record of any communication that you have with the contractor about this. 

If the problem still isn’t fixed, you can make a formal complaint. Medium and small-sized companies may have an official complaints procedure. Small companies and sole traders may be part of a trade association. You can also contact Trading Standards if you have serious concerns. 

Following this, you can attempt to recover the money that you have paid. To do this, there needs to be a clear breach of contract. The next step would be to escalate the issue and take legal action. Make sure that you’ve gathered all your evidence so that you have the best chance of success.

Problems with a repair may only become clear some time after the work has been done. This makes it hard to get the contractor to accept responsibility. A contractor’s liability period tends to be around 12 months from completion. During this period, the contractor is typically responsible for fixing any issues and covering costs.

To help avoid any issues, it’s important to choose a reputable roofer. Checking online reviews is a good place to start. It’s also a good idea to ask multiple contractors to assess the issue and provide you with a quote. This means you can compare prices and ask questions. Make sure that you get a quote in writing so that you have proof of the price that the contractor gave you. 

Matthew Harwood, home and lifestyle expert at home insurance, shares his essential tips for maintaining your roof:

1. Regularly inspect your loft/attic and ceiling

“This is the easiest way to detect if your roof has a water leak. Any signs of water or moisture suggest that your roof needs to be fixed as soon as possible. It’s also important to check that your loft/attic has enough insulation. This helps to prevent any damage from ice dams or condensation. Insulation also helps to keep your home warm. In turn, this allows you to save money on your energy bills.

2. Regularly inspect your roof

“You can do this by walking around the outside of your house and looking at the roof. Look out for things such as missing, curled, or cracked shingles. You should also check the condition of the flashing and guttering. Damage to these areas can lead to extensive water damage both inside and outside your home. 

3. Keep your gutters clean

“Gutters help to drain water and, in turn, control moisture. They can get blocked with leaves, twigs, and moss. In the winter months, they can also get blocked with snow. Blocked gutters can cause internal and external water damage, mould build-up, and rotting roof decking. Keep your gutters free of blockages so they can do their job. 

4. Trim trees close to your roof

“A common cause of roof damage is fallen trees. Extreme winds can cause heavy branches or whole trees to snap and fall. Even small ones can do a lot of damage if they fall onto your roof.  To prevent this from happening, you should keep an eye on the growth of trees close to your home. This may involve trimming them down or removing them altogether. 

5. Repair damages as soon as possible

“Roof damages that appear minor can escalate quicker than you might think. The bigger the issue, the more it costs to repair it. That’s why it’s important to act promptly if you notice any damage to your roof. Ensure that you choose a skilled and reputable company to carry out the repair work. By doing this, you can avoid the chance of any other issues occurring in the future.”

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