Inspecting The Attic

Inspecting The Attic

In this page we will discuss how Mose handles inspecting the attic of your home.

A professional home inspection is conducted based on industry standards of practice. At Mose Home Inspection Services we base ourselves on is the ASHI & Inter-NACHI standards of practice. On this page we use the term “home” but the following equally applies to condominiums as well.

Attics are rarely used and often neglected. At Mose Home Inspection Services we understand that your attic can tell you a lot about the overall condition of your home and especially your roof. The roofs of homes in the greater Montreal area, Laval and the South Shore take a lot of abuse from snow, ice, high heat and lots of rain. All of these take their toll on your roof and they can leave signs in your attic.

Why Inspecting Your Attic is Important

Everything your home is exposed to by the elements lands on the roof and so much of what happens inside your home passes up to the attic. We will touch on some of the basics.

Trusses & Rafters

Your Mose Home Inspection Services inspection is not an engineering inspection however we are trained to inspect the structural members of the attic. Even if on the outside the roof looks sound and secure, inside the attic you could find damaged trusses or rafters. Our inspection will disclose stress cracks or damage caused by shoddy renovation work that could lead to a loss of integrity.

Signs of Fire Damage

The color of the wood in your attic can reveal, that the home may have suffered from fire damage. If the wood is black, scorched and sooty, that’s a clear sign it had been burned in the past. Conversely, if the wood is painted, that could mean that the visible damage and smell as covered up.

Attic Insulation

In Canada we face extreme weather and having adequate insulation in the attic is critical. Attics can be insulated in a number of ways, including blowing in insulation or laying fiberglass batts.

Insulation is rated with an R factor, meaning the higher the R number, typically the higher the insulating factor. Ask your home inspector if the batts are facing the right direction (paper up or paper down). Properly insulated attics can cut down on your heating costs in the winter and cooling expenses in the summer.

Water Damage in the Attic

Water penetrates your roof and leaves its mark in the attic. Inspectors will look for staining on the wood supports or on the walls which provides them with evidence of water leaks, signaling the need to check the roof covering. Often condensation will form around poorly insulated pipes or bathroom & laundry room vents, which can cause wood to rot.

Check the Chimney

You can’t check the interior of the chimney from the attic, but an inspector can tell if the exterior structure is solid within the attic. That part of the chimney that is unexposed to the elements can also deteriorate over time. Mose Home Inspection Services inspectors will look for cracks in the bricks and whether the mortar has crumbled. It’s not unusual to discover a chimney in the attic but no sign of a fireplace inside the home because it has been walled in.

Other Items we Inspect in the Attic

The following are some of the other items we cover in an attic inspection.

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Insulation in unfinished spaces, including attics, crawlspaces and foundation areas

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Checking for dangerous materials like asbestos and vermiculite

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Adequate ventilation

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Mechanical exhaust systems in the kitchen, bathrooms and laundry area

Additional Items Verified

In the Great White North we have our share of critters, the first sign that one has been living in the attic is often the telltale evidence of tiny poop pellets left behind. Squirrels, raccoons, birds and other animals often enter attics through the eaves or loose boards and this wildlife can cause considerable damage.

As part of our inspection we will let you now if there is any evidence of the presence of these uninvited visitors.

Want to Learn More?

Please visit the other pages on our site that describe some of the other aspects of the Mose Home Inspection Services home inspection process.

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