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  • Private landlords – consider flat roof replacement to reduce ongoing maintenance costs

    January 25 2017

    Here we ask Mike, a private landlord based in West Yorkshire with 25 properties, about winter maintenance and discuss how property owners really could save a fortune over the long term with direct roof covering replacement.

    Q. What do you find are the main issues raised by tenants during the winter months?

    A. The majority of call outs we get are for damp or mould in the house or leaky roofs. We start getting reports of problems with roofs after the storms in late Autumn and this carries on, usually, right through to Spring.

    Q. Are the issues with flat roofs or pitched?

    A. Both, we do have quite a number of flat roof extensions, plus a couple of flat roofs on leisure/office buildings that we manage.

    Q. What type of material are the flat roofs you have manufactured from?

    A. Traditional flat roof materials, such as felt and bitumen, some have been repaired several times over the years.

    Q. Do you have any idea how much it costs you every year in time and materials to repair these roofs?

    A. It’s not something I’ve fully calculated, but it must run into thousands. What I do know is that we get calls constantly about leaky roofs, particularly after bad weather and it really does stretch our resources.

    Q. Have you ever thought about having any of the flat roofs completely replaced and what do you think would be the pros and cons of this?

    A. There are a couple of roofs that really could do with replacement coverings as they are so worn and in bad condition that I don’t think we’ll have any option soon…!

    The pros are, obviously, that it would be much better in the long term to have a flat roof replaced in terms of maintenance, it may also make sense from a financial point of view too. Repair of roofs does put a big burden on our maintenance team and to have some of them replaced, rather than keeping patching them up – would mean we could concentrate on other areas and keep tenants happy!

    The Cons, I’d say would be the inconvenience to the tenant of having to move out of that room or building whilst the roof covering was replaced. Also, we’d have to find an installer who could fit the replacement roof to a high standard, to prevent
    issues in the future.

    Our Topseal expert says: Did you know that with Topseal Direct Lay, the building remains complete accessible during the roof covering replacement? There is no inconvenience to the tenant as the GRP single ply membrane is simply added over the existing flat roof. Topseal Direct Lay is also only fitted by fully trained approved installers, which means the roof will be fitted right first time.

    Q. What causes most of the issues with leaky roofs on your properties?

    A. It is usually caused by falling tiles that damage the roof covering when it’s really windy. Some of the older felt flat roofs seem to get damaged after exposure to the sun in the summer, leading to leaks during wet weather.

    Q. If you did have a roof covering replaced, how long would you expect it to last?

    A. Around 15 years, hopefully more.

    Our Topseal expert says: Topseal Direct Lay GRP (Glass Reinforced Polyester) roofs they are guaranteed for 20 years, but you could reasonably expect them to last much longer.

    Q. If you didn’t have to attend to issues with leaky roofs, would this make a big difference to your repair bill or maintenance costs for your properties?

    A. Yes, I think it would save us a significant amount ever year on call outs and ongoing maintenance – when you look at it that way, flat roof covering replacement would be a good investment on several of our properties.

    Our Topseal expert says: For landlords like Mike, complete flat roof replacement with a GRP covering such as Topseal Direct Lay, can make a lot of sense. It is an excellent cost saving option compared to constantly having to repair aged flat roofs, which can be a major burden throughout the year. It’s a much more seamless process with Topseal Direct Lay too as the old roof does not need to be removed and the waste disposed of, which means it is much quicker to replace. Landlords can choose the colour of their replacement roof covering to complement the property.

    As Topseal Direct Lay is BBA certified and fire rated, this reassures landlords that their replacement roof covering is fully certified. It is ideal for anyone with multi-occupancy buildings, such as apartments and large office buildings as there is no disruption to tenants whilst the work is being carried out.

    For more information about Topseal Direct Lay flat roofing system call 08000 831 094 or visit the website www.topsealdirectlay.co.uk

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