Old framing comments

I recently did a pre-listing inspection on a 1950’s built home. The clients were not pleased with some of the comments I made. One of them being about the older framing practices. The roof lines were pretty straight, no signs of sway back or spreading but I have been in the habit of making a comment when older framing practices are observed. Client (who is a GC) claims he contacted his engineer who says there is no deficiency.

I will attach The comment I made and a couple pictures. I can see their point of view and wondering what others think.

My comment:

The roof structure was substandard when compared with current building standards. For example, a ridge board was installed instead of a beam. This may result in the roof structure spreading or sagging. Recommend that a qualified contractor evaluate and repair if necessary.





so You would prefer trusses 24" oc with osb to stick framed rafters 16" oc with 3/4 sheathing…interesting concept that…

Yep, you need to tone that verbiage down a bit. Just note the type of roof structure and any deflections or damage. Recommendations should be based on defects, not “older framing practices”.

I agree a little over the top. Older building practices were modern building practices when that roof was built in 1950, so I suggest report only visible defects regardless of age such as sagging ridge line, broken rafters, etc.

Looks OK to me. I know you probably feel that you need to say something about the structure, as we all do but, you should never say something “may happen”, especially on a 66 year old home. Just describe whats there and include a couple of picture’s in the report. Here’s a quick example.

The roof structure consists of 2X6 rafters, 16 inches on center with 2X? ceiling joists for support. The roof sheathing is typical pine boards, ventilation is gable end vents which appear adequate as no moisture staining was present.

Although the roof structure was not built to today’s standards there were no adverse conditions observed that warrants further evaluation.

Also… Just about everything in a 1950 home is sub standard compared to today and I think most people get that. Actually, many components may actually be better like using 3/4 pine boards for roof sheathing rather than 5/8 or 1/2 plywood or particle board.


Could you post some larger photos?
Those are pretty small and I can’t seem to blow them up.

I may see some issues but it’s hard to tell until I can see whats going on better.

Thank you guys. I am always grateful for the constructive input so I can continue to improve and be of better value to my clients.

Thomas- unfortunately I think that is as good as this pictures will get… Sorry they aren’t better.

Some of those older homes are better than some of today’s.
Unless there is a defect, I would not comment sub standard. :slight_smile:

Wtf. My house is 2 years old with a hand framed roof and a ridge board (not beam). What is a ridge beam needed for when there are ceiling joists and collar ties?

Ok, I wish the photos were better but here goes.

First photo.
We have a “ridge board” approx. 3/4" in thickness it appears.
In some old framing you don’t even have a ridge board at all, which
is acceptable if the rafters directly oppose one another.

The issue I see in the First photo is at least one rafter on the right side bearing on the 3/4" ridge board without a nearby opposing rafter on the other side.

Yep, mine is 115 yrs old with a stone foundation. :wink:

I see ALOT more structural issues with trussed roofs than with framed roofs. Definitely not sub par.