This year, we decided that our roof really needed to be looked at. It may have been the sight of slates shifting with time or the sight of rain water pooling on the landing stairs, either way it had to be fixed, and we could put it off any longer.
So began the search – we live in a village of only around 1500 people, so you get to see regular companies doing work, and it was these I wanted to sound out for a quote to do our roof. Sadly, even giving these people almost the whole summer to turn-up, none of them did. Clearly, theres a lot of work to be had in this area. So my next step was that there interweb people tell me about. Again I was disappointed by a few, but one of the links that came up under the search was the NFRC so I started going down their list of members that covered my area. I emailed 3 at a time, giving them details of the problem and asking for a quote. I got down to about the 10th on the list before anyone was really interested in coming out.
That company was Kavanagh Roofing and a kid chap named Jason came out for a chat. After a short time it was clear this was a reputable company as he gave a detailed idea of what was needed and even better what would save me money both now and long term. At this point I must include that when I bought this property I had budgeted £20,000 for the roof as even I could see it was in a bit of a state. As it turned out the quote was a lot less than that, good thing too because the money had long since gone and this would be paid for on the credit card.
So as you can assume I agreed to the work and first the scaffolds came, and they were nice people too and the was no mess or fuss. I rewarded them with coffee as they were here for a few days putting up the scaffold, they were so kind they also adjusted their plan slightly, so the scaffold would give me the easy access to paint an upstairs window without me risking it on my cheap ladder.
A few days later the roofer arrived and after a few days I was called up to look at some issues with the underlining structure to the roof. These issues were not new to me, but the extent of them took me by surprise. I had noticed months before that the ends of some rafter had rotted. I had told Jason, but I also said it was only the first few, and I didn’t want that work done as I couldn’t afford it. But once a closer look could be had it was clear the whole side of the property had this problem and the reason why was the previous work done to the roof. Due to the way the slates were fixed, water was seeping though the last row of slates on to the battens and rafters. So the job did get a bit larger, but I was confident that we were only doing what was needed for a decent life of the roof. I’ve worked with contractors of all sorts before as I used to contract work for major hotel renovations, so it’s an area I’m well-used to.
So a list of work from the top – Repair chimney to include a lead collar, pointing and adding tops to stop the crows nesting and waterproofing the brickwork. Removal of all old slates, replacing buttoning, repairing damaged rafters – I chose to have the existing rafters repaired rather than replaced simply because the cottage is very old, and I didn’t want the structure of flint walls & oak supporting members disturbed too much – the suitable old slates or new slates were then added. New lead flashing was made and fixed on site before finally all the gutter was cleaned or repair as needed. Sorry, not a roofing expert, but also new sheeting was added under the slates.
Once the job was complete, it was clearly a good job done by professionals. Already after just a few weeks many people have commented on how good the roof now looks, so I thank Jason and Kavanagh Roofing and compliment them on their work.