If you were to notice an issue with your roof, such as a spot where the shingles are missing, you'd likely call a local roofing contractor right away. Most roofing contractors can't drop what they're doing and rush to your home to redo your roof — but many will be able to visit you promptly and affix a tarp over the problematic area as a short-term solution. Here are some pros and cons of using a tarp for this purpose.
Pro: Prevents Water Damage
The most obvious advantage of placing a tarp over a problem area of your roof is that it prevents further water damage. When it rains, you won't have to worry about further deterioration of your roof, or perhaps even water soaking into your attic. You shouldn't overlook the value of a tarp. Even though it's simple, it's an effective way to deal with the roofing problem that you're currently facing.
Con: Not A Long-Term Solution
A tarp offers a lot of short-term benefits, but one of the issues associated with it is that it isn't a long-term solution. Nothing is an alternative to having your roof professionally patched or refinished, and while the tarp will buy you some time, you don't want to leave it in place indefinitely. Once your roofer puts the tarp in place, you need to start making plans to have the issue addressed properly.
Pro: Saves Money
Your roofer will likely charge you a small amount of money for visiting your home, going up onto your roof, and installing a tarp over the problematic area. Whatever you have to pay, this fee is worthwhile because of the amount of money that it could potentially save you. Left unattended, the problem area might leak, but that isn't necessarily the only issue that you could face. High winds could blow more shingles away, resulting in a larger problem and considerably more expenses.
Con: A Visual Eyesore
You might appreciate the help that a tarp can provide, but one downfall is that it's a visual eyesore. The tarp likely won't match the color of your shingles, which means that it will stand out from the street. You might feel a little embarrassed with a blue or yellow tarp stretched across a section of your roof — even if you know the value that it's providing. There's a silver lining in the tarp being an eyesore, however. It will compel you to more quickly arrange to get roof repair services.