Searching for your first home? If you’re going to make the right choice, you need a house with a roof that’s going to stand the test of time. Property viewings are by no means a walk in the park, but they’re made much easier if you know the right terminology and what to look out for. Read on as we look at some important roofing terms for first time buyers:

Deck/structure This is the structural underlay of your flat roof, typically made from timber floorboards or plywood. On a property viewing, it’s worth taking a look into the loft to check everything is structurally sound and there are no clear signs of damage or decay to any visible areas. If there is no access then get a roofer to assess the condition, you may have to pay a survey fee but the information received may prove invaluable.


Guttering refers to the property’s rainwater gutters, which run around the roof’s perimeter. They collect water and divert it away from the property. This protects the building’s exterior surfaces as well as its foundations, and prevents water getting inside your home. Check that gutters are in good condition, as broken guttering could indicate further problems elsewhere.


While we’re all aware what moss is, not everyone knows what it means for a roof. It’s a fungus which traps moisture on the roof, causing roofing materials to rot over time. Some people may think it looks pretty having a large moss collection on the roof but the damage is slowly occurring. Removal is essential.


A roof’s pitch is the angle at which it slopes. Low pitched roofs are less than 25 degrees, which is worth looking out for, as it can make replacement and repairs more problematic in the future. May low pitch roofs are covered in the wrong materials due to unscrupulous past roofers, get it checked if there is an indication of a low pitched roof.

Roofing materials

There are a variety of roofing materials, and it’s a good idea to learn the basics about each of them so you know what they mean for your potential first home:

  • Concrete tiles – A durable and versatile roofing material, which typically lasts for around 50 years.
  • Clay tiles – Slightly lighter, longer lasting and lower-maintenance compared to their concrete alternative, but also more expensive as a result.
  • Slate – Made from natural mined slate, these last upwards of 70 years and give superb kerb appeal to properties.


Roofing ventilation allows moisture out of the home in the form of humid air. Without it, moisture gets trapped in the roof space and damp or mould begin to develop. It’s worth asking about ventilation when viewing a home. Ventilation is relatively cheap to install so do not risk a loft without any at all.

Need anything else?

Our brief guide should stand you in good stead for your property search. But if you find you need any more assistance, be sure to get in touch with the team at DPR Roofing Barnsley. We’re a team of roofing specialists, providing new roofs, roof replacements and roof repairs to residential and commercial properties across Barnsley and the surrounding areas. We’re also experts in gutter repairs and gutter clearance. We are owners of high access hydraulic platforms which saves on expensive scaffolding and means emergency jobs can be done often within a few hours. There’s no job we can’t complete to the highest standard. Get in touch today to speak more about our services.