Inspecting your loft – do you know what’s up there?

Inspecting your loft can be a very surprising and illuminating experience! If you are thinking of selling up it is a wise decision to be prepared beforehand. We don’t just specialise in loft conversions, we specialise in lofts in general! Our advice is to check your loft and find out what exactly is up there before any home inspections are made on behalf of the (potential) buyers.

Lofts should not be overlooked. A loft reflects the history of a home. It can provide clues to serious problems that might not be disclosed or even known by the current occupant of the home. You need to know about these issues before putting it on the market too!

So what should you look out for?

Insulation

Have you been feeling the cold in winter even with all the heating on? If so, you may have a problem with the insulation. One-third of heat from the home is lost through the roof. Insulation in the loft could be out of date, worn or non-existent. Check to see what kind of insulation there is and if it is holding up. This is something that can affect buying decisions. The home may look great but if it hasn’t been maintained properly over the years then there will be some serious defects.

Water damage

Upon an inspection or survey your home will be looked at for signs of water damage. Look out for staining on wood supports in your loft or on the walls. Signs of this staining may indicate that there has been water leakage at some point. Worst case scenario there is a leak in the roof that needs to be plugged. If you don’t address the problem you may experience wood rot, condensation on pipes and an unnecessarily damp and smelly loft. Smelly homes don’t sell well.

Chimney sweep

These are tricky little devils. It’s hard to really gauge the condition of a chimney inside. You have to assess its condition from the exterior. Professionals can always help you with making this determination of whether or not your chimney is solid, safe and functional. A chimney can deteriorate over time, especially in older properties, so be sure to get it checked.

Structure 

A roof can look safe and secure but inside the loft it is very easy to find broken or damaged rafters that make it a dangerous proposition for going up in. Structural stability is an incredibly important part of the buying/selling equation as much as it is for overall safety. An inspection or survey can easily disclose stress cracks that could lead to a loss of integrity.

Animal stowaways 

It may sound silly, but check for animals, rodents, birds and insects. Lofts attract all sorts of creepy-crawlies and furry beasties. The first sign that any critters have pitched up their tent in your loft is often evidenced by any faeces (usually little pellets). The types of animals encountered over the years have varied between squirrels, rats, birds, spiders, these creatures can cause considerable damage or mess to your loft if left to have free reign.

Remember to check your loft for any signs such as these before putting it on the market or allowing buyers to view the property. The loft usually gets neglected for years. It can come back to haunt you!


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