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[SEAOC] Re: [SEAOC] Re: [SEAOC] Re: [SEAOC] Basic Roof Rafter Analysis Question

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It takes a real good selling job for an engineer to explain to a client 
that his $3,000 new roof will require adding plywood shear walls with 
hold downs, tie straps, header replacement, rafter bracing, plus 
numerous other changes.  He is now facing a $2,000 to $3,000 
engineering fee and building upgrade cost in excess of the total roof 
and engineering cost.  This is the point that the owner says "thank 
you.  Don't call me.  I will call you."  Most likely the home owner 
will find a contractor who works with an engineer who really does not 
care about the long term risk and will have the job done anyway.

As already pointed out, if it is not documented that the home owner was 
made aware of the total impact of the new tile roof then he will surely 
look to you (his engineer) to pay for ANY repairs to his house after 
the next earthquake or even if wall cracks appear without any 
earthquake.  Guess what,  he will have no problem finding engineers to 
state that (his engineer) was wrong.

Now, does your release form from the home owner protect you when the 
house is sold a year later?  Probably not.

My personal solution has been to spend $100 to $200 a year to have 
repairs done to my wood shake roof every September.  My roof is now 16 
year old and in fair condition.  I hope to make it to 20 years at which 
time the roof will most likely have to be replaced or the yearly 
repairs will become excessive.  I also keep a supply of buckets handy 
when it rains.

Jim Dane

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