Home Built In 1945

I have an inspection scheduled for this Saturday on a 1400 square foot home built in 1945. I do not do many homes this old and thought I would use this great message board for input from other experienced inspectors on what I should keep my eyes open for other than the obvious. Any input would be valued and appreciated.

Some days I would love to inspect a house that new! Many, many homes here in central MO. were built in the early 1900’s. Just this week, I have done one built in 1925, 1950, and 1930. Look out for Knob and Tube, crummy plumbing, foundation problems, and lots and lots of Johnny Homeaker do-it-urself home “improvements”. Also, realtors can and will list the electrical system as “upgraded” when all they really did was take the old wiring and hook it in to a breaker system instead of the screw in fuses. I have TONS of pictures of things on these older homes!! Just yell if I can be of any help on specific items.

Thanks. I think I might take you up on that!!

Whoa!!! knob and tube in the 40’s??? Will you get electricity next?
K&T went out in thirties in most places, had gone to two wire system


That home will most likely have a crawl space. Make sure you go underneath. They all tend to have plumbing leaks around the bathrooms and kitchens and the floors are always damaged.

Make sure you turn on all the water before going under. I have found leaks numerous times. Check your sill plates for rot and damage. Even though yo will have a termite guy there, look for areas of damage - they are very good at missing damage once they have found termites.

Make a note if they have origianl windows - sometimes parts for them can be hard to locate.

Good luck and have fun

Thanks. There is nothing finer than a crawlspace in Florida on a beautiful Saturday morning. I will need to focus to do my job and will try not to let the beauty overwhelm me. Have a great day and thanks for the input.

In addition to the above, there may be insulation concerns, like asbestos,vermiculite in the attic, wear a mask.
Cloth-insulated wiring, chewed by rats. Birds nests, wasp nests, etc.
The walls may be lath and plaster, drywalled over, possibly uninsulated.
Check for doors out of plumb, sawed off crooked so they don’t drag.
Bedroom Windows painted shut with lead paint.
Crumbling chimney bricks.
Wood skirting in contact with ground. Floridian scorpions and snakes. :cool:
Multiple layers of ashphalt shingles.
Asbestos shingle siding.
Or …a beautifully hand-crafted home, well-kept and updated.

Hi Paul,

You may call me if you run into anything that you need a second opinion about.

Good Luck

Thanks. I appreciate the list. I also appreciate the offer of assistance. This is cool because I have not done anything earlier than approx 1955-60. I am looking forward to playing with the snakes and scorpions. Two of my favorite bands you know!!

Older homes can be charming, but you should be aware of special issues with them so you’re not surprised once you own the home. Foundation problems, overloaded electrical systems and lead paint are not unusual in many older homes.

Make sure you make a note of the age in your report. Also note that the buyer should not expect to be buying a home that meets current code or building regulations.

Thanks to all. The inspection went well. We found typical items like water staining around the waste lines at the sub flooring in the crawl. I was definitely impressed with the renovations they did on this home. Quality all the way. I was especially impressed with the installation of the insulation in the attic.

Insulation not properly laid.JPG

You are kidding right. That batt roll insulation is improperly installed.

Read the title of the photo.

me bad

Me too, but bad is only bad when it’s not good.