If you are purchasing a home using either a Veterans Administration loan or a Federal Housing Administration loan, you will need to have a roof certification done. Most traditional loans do not require such a certification, but they also typically require a larger down payment.
When you apply for a Veterans Administration loan, or VA loan, an inspector will inspect the home that you are wanting to purchase. Part of the inspection process will include viewing the roof on the home. If the roof looks like it is leaking or has obvious issues, it is likely a roof certification will not be granted. If the roof looks like it won’t last another two years, it is also unlikely that a certification can be obtained without repairing or replacing the roof. Another thing to keep in mind is that the roof cannot have three layers of shingles or more. If it has that many layers, certification is likely out of reach unless the whole roof is replaced.
A Federal Housing Administration loan, or FHA loan, has very similar requirements to the VA loan. As with the VA loan, an FHA loan requires that the roof on a home not be leaking. It also requires that the roof be functional for at least two more years from the date of purchase. If the home you’re considering purchasing does not meet these requirements, a certification likely won’t be granted.
If the home you want to purchase can’t pass a roof inspection for certification purposes, you can ask for the seller to repair or replace the roof ( Click here to see our list of qualities to look for in a reliable roofing contractor). Keep in mind, however, that a VA loan only allows for 4 percent in concessions by the sellers of the home. An FHA loan only allows for 6 percent in concessions by the sellers. If you ask the sellers to contribute to closing costs, those costs will take up some of the allowable percentages as well.
As you can see, both FHA and VA loans have more requirements than conventional loans, but there are benefits to mortgaging the home you’ve chosen with such loans.