Roofing Nails Popping Thru the Shingles

Should an inspector note in his report that a significant amount of roofing nails have already protruded through the shingles and that for many, a patch of some sort of sealant has been applied?

Wouldn’t a situation of this nature indicate a significant problem that could lead to water penetration through the roof?


Yes that should be noted but specifying repairs is not the job of an inspector. Just recommend repairs by a qualified contractor or license roofing contractor.

“Just recommend repairs by a qualified contractor or license roofing contractor”.
Refer the whole damn inspection then…Huh?
A bunch of Jokers! YEP!

"Some exposed nail were noted in several areas that should be repaired/sealed as part of general maintenance. "

It sounds like there were either under driven nails or nail pops. In either case it’s a reportable defect, but can’t tell if it’s something your inspector should have seen.

These are indeed reportable defects unless for some reason the inspector could not see/access the roof. Where were the defects, what was the weather on inspection day, was it wet, was it snow covered, were they on the ridge that the inspector could not access due to conditions? Not everything is always black and white…

Is there proper ventilation of the attic?

To your original question, yes, it should be noted. And you do not just smear some cold process cement over them as the repair. That will fail in a year.
If there are many that have popped, they may have been underdriven during the original install or excessive heat in the attic forcing the nails up. The inspector should be able to determine what the cause was in order to recommend the proper repair and associated costs.