A buildings roofing system is a costly but mandatory maintenance and replacement expense. While a community may get away with deferred maintenance to other components the roofing system is unforgiving when not adequately maintained and replaced when the time comes. Leaks and water damage to homes/units within a building will cause costs to skyrocket for an Association which tried to extend the useful life of a roof beyond what is realistic.
In the Pacific Northwest most roofing systems have a useful life between 20-30 years when properly maintained. Composition/Asphalt shingle roofing has proved to be the most costs effective for most communities and overall can be maintained with comparatively minimal expense over its useful life.
When a roof has been properly installed the funding for the roof replacement should not be a surprise to anyone. There should be many years or decades to adequately fund for replacement of the roof. An advantage of a reserve study is that this future expense is broken down to current funding requirements so a community can adequately and fairly assess the members over time as the roof deteriorates.
*Reserve Analyst Tip* – Have an annual maintenance contract set up with a qualified and licensed vendor. This will typically include inspections of the roof at least twice during the year at which time necessary repairs can be made. Repairing a roof promptly helps to extend the roofs useful life to its full potential and ensures water damage does not accumulate and spread.
Link: Roof Maintenance Manual