The Importance of Good Roof Overhang

Good Roof Overhang

                             The Spanish climate is generally dry, but when the rain comes it is commonly heavy and can be dirty (often caused by sand blown up from North Africa). Wall surfaces will soon show signs of staining and decay if over exposed and as damp proof courses are virtually unheard of in Spain, rising and penetrating lower wall damp is more likely to be a problem where excessive splash back occurs.


When choosing a house, a decent roof overhang on all elevations is a definite plus. Ideally look for a provision of 30cm + for the first elevation and an extra 10cm for each elevation thereafter, (e.g. the roof overhang above a 3 storey area should be 50cm+). This will help protect the walls of the property, while keeping rain away from most window and door openings, extending the drip line away from the lower walls at ground level, (reducing the amount of splash back that the lower walls have to cope with). The added shade to eaves areas will also help to reduce thermal related cracking at roof slab level.
Obviously a house should not be crossed off the list, simply because it has poor roof overhang (many other positive features may compensate for the omission) buyer’s should however be aware that little or no roof overhang will:-

  • Increase the requirement for re-decoration, (e.g. every 2 years instead of every 5)
  • Increase staining to wall finishes including paint, ‘monocap’ coloured renders and stonework.
  • Increase the risk of penetrating damp via walls as well as window and door openings
  • Increase decay to wooden doors and windows
  • Increase the level of splash back related damp to lower walls.

Finally bear in mind that gutters will only reduce the splash back issue and will not provide sufficient protection to the wall surfaces and openings, hence the provision of gutters is not a proper substitute for good overhang.

Information provided by Mark Paddon BSc Hons Building Surveying. MCIOB. Free 17 page buyer’s guide available via  T: 962807247 M: 653733066

Free initial advice is available by phone or by e-mailing :- This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Copyright Mark Paddon 2008


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