Inverted Roof

 

I quite enjoy being a home inspector.   The variety of homes and locations I get to inspect on a daily basis is anything but boring.  Discovering a near hidden problem and the conditions that lead to that concern is exhilarating and satisfying.  My purpose as a home inspector is to present the true condition of the home to my client so that they can make an informed decision about their purchase. 

But what I look forward to the most is the rare doozy of a find that is completely out of the ordinary and amazing – sometimes in an awesome way, sometimes in a horrifying way, sometimes both.  These findings help me to understand the limits of a building’s capabilities and the extreme results of poor construction practices. 

A perfect example of one such find is a detached garage I recently inspected in the historic district of Phoenix.   The roof of this garage was completely inverted, a result of entirely removing the collar ties and ceiling joists from the inside of the roof system.  I see missing or poorly installed collar ties and ceiling joists on a regular basis.  These conditions usually lead to sagging rafters and ridges and occasionally to broken rafters.  However, I have never seen the complete collapse of a roof.  What was most surprising about the condition of the building was that it was still standing.  This is a testament to the quality of original construction before the critical collar tie and ceiling joist components were removed.