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The Re-roofing Process

A checklist for HOAs

By Donna Vingo

Having an excellent roofing system can help protect a property owner’s greatest asset. Throughout the year, the change of seasons brings different challenges to the roof of a structure. From the sweltering summer heat to the deep freeze of winter, from strong winds or powerful rains to the wildfire dangers throughout California, having a roofing system that can withstand any of these challenges, let alone all of them, is an important protection against losing everything. This article is focused on providing the HOA board, the HOA roofing committee, and HOA homeowners with information on the re-roofing process.

The HOA board is responsible for two major tasks: making decisions and spending money. HOAs are nonprofit corporations that have as their principal asset the land and buildings in the HOA common areas, which can be valued from hundreds of thousands up to tens of millions of dollars. The HOA board is usually composed of volunteers from within the community, most having limited knowledge of the laws and regulations covering the HOA. This re-roofing checklist is being provided to assist and educate HOA board members, the architectural review committee, the roofing committee, and homeowners.

There are two primary kinds of HOAs: planned unit developments (PUDs), which are detached single family homes; and condominium (condo) homes, which share at least one common wall.

The homeowners in a PUD are not usually responsible for the expense of re-roofing, but those homeowners who are usually must have the re-roofing materials approved by the design or architectural review committee of the HOA.

Tasks of the PUD Architectural Review Committee

  •  Regulate external design in conjunction with the CC&Rs for many HOAs.
  •  Review and approve, modify, or disapprove written applications submitted by homeowners.
  •  Conduct periodic inspections to determine compliance with the architectural standards and approve plans for alterations.
  •  Adopt architectural guidelines, subject to confirmation by the board of trustees.
  •  Adopt rules and procedures by which the committee will exercise its duties.
  •  Maintain complete and accurate records of all actions taken.
  •  In the absence of an architectural review committee, it is the responsibility of the HOA board to educate the unit owners on community standards for exterior improvements, including the potential impact on property values.

Because it is a substantial investment, when the HOA is planning for re-roofing, it is strongly recommended that the board appoint a roofing committee. Re-roofing is often the largest line item in the reserve budget, and it requires much research and gathering of information. It can take three to five years for large HOAs to complete the re-roofing process.

The first step is to thoroughly review all the governing documents to determine who is responsible for re-roofing – the HOA or the individual homeowners. The next step is to determine what (if anything) the governing documents say about which materials to use.

  •  CC&Rs must be reviewed to determine if a re-roofing material is required (some CC&Rs are silent on this matter), and then all governing documents should be reviewed to ensure the materials are appropriate to the community.
  •  Determine what supporting information was used to estimate roof life: industry standard or warranty.
  •  Understand what roofing materials are presently available: asphalt/composition shingle, cedar shake, concrete tile, clay tile, slate, composite shake, rubber, or metal.
  •  Have an industry professional or attorney educate the HOA board and/or the roofing committee about the fiduciary responsibilities of the board (Cal. Corp. Code § 7231).
  •  The board should document the industry professional’s information or the attorney’s representation in the meeting minutes. This will document that board members fulfilled their responsibility to become educated as a "prudent person" per Cal. Corp. Code § 7231.

The more planning and budgeting completed before the actual roofing construction begins, the more likely the project will be successful. Again, it is a process that takes a considerable amount of time and education.



  •  The board should educate itself on available roofing materials.
  •  The board selects product to be used in re-roofing.
  •  The architectural design review committee approves roofing material.
  •  The construction manager (if HOA has one) should review as-builts and product specifications as necessary and update reroofing material to be used.
  •  The board or roofing committee performs a job walk, assists with setting the scope of work, and reviews bids to determine that all bids are complete and all materials are as specified and of the quality expected (it is recommended that larger HOAs hire a roofing consultant or construction manager to complete these tasks).
  •  The contractor should do a job walk with the construction manager or the association’s appointed point person to review the scope of work and HOA-specific conditions.
  •  At least three project bids from reputable contractors should be reviewed. All bids should include a proposed timeline for work.
  •  The contractor’s references, licensing, and insurance must be verified. Previous similar jobs completed by the contractor should be reviewed.
  •  The construction manager or association point person knowledgeable of roofing construction should review the selected bids for accuracy and completeness. The process for change orders and contingencies, especially dry rot work, should be specifically included in the bids.
  •  Liens are a normal part of many construction projects. The contractor should be asked if they plan to place a lien against the work. All liens must be released before the board makes the final payment. An attorney should be employed to assist the board in understanding liens, lien waivers, and lien releases.
  •  Once the board or re-roofing committee feels duly educated and informed, the process for selecting the contractor can begin.
  •  Legal review of the proposed project contract is performed by an HOA attorney knowledgeable in construction law.


  •  Approved contract is executed.
  •  Roofing contractor performs the work.
  •  The person appointed by the board or the board’s construction manager should make in-progress inspections and reviews of the work and keep the board apprised of the progress.
  •  Municipal building department inspections should be coordinated.

Post Construction

  •  The construction manager, board, contractor, and material representative conduct a post-installation job-walk to confirm everything is done correctly, according to product specifications, and that the construction manager confirms the work is correctly done.
  •  The contractor provides the warranty for the work and materials used, and lien releases are given to the board.
  •  The board authorizes the final payment, and final payment is made.

With COVID-related supply chain problems behind us, many homeowners and boards are discovering leaks and other issues in their buildings. It is time to begin or restart the re-roofing process.


Donna Vingo is a territory manager representing Westlake Unified Steel in Central/Northern California. A Bay Area project manager/forward planner in residential and commercial construction before joining Westlake Roofing, she worked extensively with architects, community managers, and real estate departments setting up HOAs for communities. Vingo has a BA in economics and finance and is available to assist HOAs throughout the re-roofing process. She can be reached at [email protected].


This article is for informational purposes only and for a general audience. The details of HOA CC&Rs may vary and should be the sole determination for assigning responsibilities relative to the community situation.


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