Narrative Question: New asphalt roof, 25% of shingles showing irregular cracks?

This question was found in the InterNACHI Practice Test.

Would you diagnose and report this, or would you just report what you see? What are you thoughts on making a statement regarding the possible reasons for component failure in your reports?

How would you write the narrative for this observation? How detailed should the narrative be? Would you include details such as the well-ventilated attic?

It seems the question in the image is contrary to the things I’ve read: that an inspector should just report what they see. Of course, we should be informed enough to diagnose issues so we can try to trace the problem back to it’s source - but would you make assumptions in your client’s final report?

The narrative I think would be appropriate would be:

Observed irregular cracks on approximately 25% of shingles; Owner states the roof is four years old. It’s unusual to see this many issues on a roof of this age. Suggest an inspection by a qualified roofing contractor.

I would avoid quantifying it.

The seller stated the asphalt shingles are 4 years old. The asphalt shingles had an abnormal amount of cracking for their age. The cracking shortens the lifespan of the shingles and can lead to premature roof leaking, causing property damage. Recommend a qualified licensed roofing contractor further evaluate the roof coverings to determine if immediate replacement is necessary. Near future re-roofing may be required, budget accordingly. Contact your attorney as to the seller’s responsibility.


Simon, thanks for the reply.

I really like your narrative! I really need to work on writing and improving they way I think of narratives.

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Identify component (roof) Identify the problem and its location (wide spread abnormal cracking). Consider consequence. (shorten life span, leaks etc. ) Elevate to proper contractor (roofing contractor).

You can then decide of you want economize your verbiage or lengthen it depending on the complexity of the problem.

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Thank you Brian! I appreciate this “template”!