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I am in the process of trying to buy a house that had it's roof re-done a couple of years ago. We went to check and see if they had a permit for it, and they did not. There was a permit for the other remodeling that was done, but we spoke with the inspector, and it did not include the roof.

I live in Minnesota, and last year we had a ton of snow that caused an ice dam on the house. This caused some sort of water damage in the house that was repaired (we're still waiting to read the updated seller's disclosure about exactly what the damage was). Now we have no way of knowing if the re-roofing was done incorrectly, which could have caused the damage from the ice dam.

So my question is, can the seller go back and get a permit for the new roof, a couple of years after the fact? I looked at my city's roofing permit information and it only mentioned getting the permit while roofing (since it needs to be inspected before it's even finished).

We want this house, and agreed in writing that the seller would obtain a permit for the roof, but we aren't sure thats even possible to do, being that it was finished in 2009.

Any advice??

Thank you!
 

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Andy covered it on both counts. This too would be my advice.

Besides truth be told the permit does not do much to "protect you" and ensure a proper job. In most cases around here there is no inspection. All they are checking for is that the contractor is licensed, bonded and insured. While that does afford some protection, I got in a rather heated argument with an inspector once because he was supposed to perform mid-job inspections and was passing other company's jobs without checking the wood and ice shield.
 

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Sound advice form the other posters. I would reduce the asking price to cover having a new roof installed. Sounds like this unpermitted roof has issues anyway so i would not accept it even if they managed to get a permit after the fact.

Andy
 
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