For Existing Property Owners
It is almost impossible to determine the condition of your roof from the ground, and climbing up on the roof can not only be dangerous but could also do additional damage unless done by experts with the correct equipment.
As the saying goes ‘out of sight, out of mind’, the condition of roofs is in general taken for granted. The first signs of a problem is usually when water starts entering the property and/or damp patches are discovered. By this time thousands of pounds worth of damage could already have taken place to the structure of the building itself and to the contents!
It is far better then to take heed of the wise old sayings such as ‘prevention is better than cure ’and ‘a stitch in time saves nine’. Therefore, conducting a detailed inspection of your roofs on a regular basis, for example annually and after any heavy storms, could help identify problems so that they can be rectified early enough to prevent significant damage and save you from extremely costly repairs further down the road.
For Prospective Property Buyers
Conducting a roof inspection before buying a property could save you significant amounts of money. Having a documented report on the roof condition, complete with high-quality images can benefit you in two main ways. Firstly, it can provide confidence that there are no significant defects that would otherwise go unnoticed until after you purchase the property, and secondly if any defects are found, the evidence could be presented to the seller so that any required repairs can be factored into the negotiations.
One way of having the roof condition inspected is to physically climb onto the roof and take a look. There are many disadvantages with this method however, not least the safety aspects of attempting such a high-risk task yourself, and the high costs associated with employing experts using all the appropriate access and safety equipment such as scaffolding, mobile access platforms and fall-arrest equipment, etc.
A cheaper, faster and far safer method is to use Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (Drones) equipped with high resolution cameras that can be flown above and around the property by a Remote Pilot, collecting high-quality video and still images which are subsequently analysed to assess the condition of the roof, gutters, etc. and to identify potential issues. In addition to the cost, speed and safety benefits of drone inspections, reports can be quickly generated that are backed up by the photographic evidence.
How to choose a drone inspection company
When choosing a company to complete any drone work for you, be sure to that they are adequately qualified, licenced and insured. As a minimum, check that the Remote Pilot holds a current ‘A2 Certificate of Competency’ and preferably a ‘General Visual Line of Sight Certificate’. Also that they possess insurance that complies with Regulation EC 785/2004 and hold an ‘Operational Authorisation’ from the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA).
Wherever possible, use a company that has experience of similar inspection work and the capability to produce a formal report with the level of detail you require. Consider asking to see samples of previous reports to satisfy yourself of their ability to deliver the required results.