Building codes are put in place for a good reason – to ensure that buildings meet the minimum requirements that building officials consider to be safe, healthy, and reasonable. Imagine if electrical codes were never updated! Homes would still have old knob and tube wiring which, not only would be a safety hazard, would never be enough to support the electrical load that today’s appliances and electronics demand. Code updates are necessary. The team at A+ Insulation wanted to provide a quick overview of what you need to know about insulation codes and updating your home when selling it.
When Must Homeowners Update to Meet New Code Requirements?
You’re not required to update your house as codes change unless you’re doing remodeling work, and then only the new part has to meet the new regulations. When you sell your home, the new buyers will have an inspection done (often from a local home inspector or home inspection company, like GeoInspections in Lee’ Summit, MO) and at that point they will let you know what passes inspection and what they would like you to update. Making sure it meets all city building codes is the seller’s responsibility. You always have the choice to say no, but most homeowners who want to sell will upgrade the things that are deal breakers for the new buyer in the interest of closing the deal.
How to Decide Which Items to Update When Selling
Look at the cost of the updates, convenience of doing them, and return on the sale of the house. That will decide if you should do the updates. If it will improve the value by $10,000 and cost $1,500 to do them, you’ll probably want to do it. If the cost of the updates is $5,000 and the value added is $4,000 or even $6,000, then it may not be worth it and you can duke it out with the new buyers.
Insulation Industry Codes
The insulation industry has codes that change as time marches on as well. Many older Kansas City homes don’t live up to new codes that have been updated over the years. We see it all the time. Even homes built ten years ago may have less insulation that is now required. Some homes just never had enough insulation to start with. Add to that the fact that in older homes, insulation can settle making it less effective as well. Your home will sell faster when it meets all of the codes.
Is Your Home Out of Compliance?
The best way to find out if your home complies with current building codes is to have an inspection. The insulation experts at A+ Insulation know exactly what to look for. Not only do we inspect for the amount of insulation, but we also look at the type and the condition. For instance, in homes in Prairie Village, cedar chips were commonly used to insulate attics. Today, we know cedar chips are a fire hazard and not acceptable as insulation material. We also look for signs of animal presence. Raccoons, squirrels, and other wildlife can find their way into your warm attic and leave unpleasant surprises behind. We will check for all of this and more. The best part is, our inspection is free!
Why Fix It Now?
If you know you will be selling your home in the next year or two, it makes sense to fix it now, finance it for a year, and enjoy the comfort and lower energy bills until you move. If you wait to fix it, you’ll be paying for it all at once when you move and you won’t have had the advantage of lower utility bills for a year or more. We offer one-year free financing to qualified buyers.