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As well as looking unsightly a moss/algae infested roof can be bad news for your property.
This germination process can happen relatively quickly depending on the material that the roof is composed of, other contributing factors are the orientation of the roof and the actual situation of the house.
This process begins with the roof obtaining a yellow/green tinge, this can happen is as little as 12 months. You often do not know how long your new roof tiles have sat outside in a building warehouse yard and the warmer, wetter climate we see now contributes to the growth of these lichen.