Seattle Home Inspector's Blog


Is your home the sequel to: “The Secret of NYMH?”

     Rodents, aka Rats, are very common in crawl spaces.  Inspectors will refer to them as "rodents" because it is oh so much more "euphemistic."  (Plus it might be squirrels----aka, "bushy-tail rats")

     People HATE rats (usually). 

     I have seen rats kill a deal on a house as quick as asbestos or mold. 

     One of the most common ways they get into a home is through damaged crawl space vents.  Sometimes they make their own way through these vents.  Other than attics, crawl spaces are the most common places to find signs of their being around.  If you ever saw "The Secret of NYMH" you probably already have a sense of why they like crawl spaces---these places are NYMH!  It is a good idea to routinely check these vents for signs of infestation.  This picture is a very good example of a hole in the screen either made by the critters or made by other means.  The dark staining on the wood under the hole is where the grease from their body hair is accumulating on the wood---a sign that they have been coming and going for quite some time.rat entrance

     Wiring should not be run through the screening of these vents because rats will eat the wire off, and then be able to get through the hole where the wire was.  They will (if there is something they want to get to bad enough) chew through the screening or widen a hole already in the screen.


   Hopefully they are not doing a sequel to "The Secret of NYMH" in your crawl space.











Charles Buell 

     PS, for those of you that are new to my blog (or for some other "unexplained" reason have never noticed)sunsmile all  pictures and smiley-face inserts (emoticons) have messages that show up when you point at them with your cursor.

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Comment balloon 6 commentsCharles Buell • April 27 2008 09:26AM


We made the folks that sold us this house get rid of the flying squirrel problem in the attic. We almost wwalked over it so you are right
Posted by Charlie Ragonesi, Homes - Big Canoe, Jasper, North Georgia Pros ( over 12 years ago
You are so right.  Most buyers don't want tenants who are rats!  I have had bats last year -- however, the seller was very proactive -- and everything worked out.
Posted by Joan Whitebook, Consumer Focused Real Estate Services (BHG The Masiello Group) over 12 years ago

Charlie, critters need homes too---just not the same homes:)

Joan, Ahhh yes----bats----the winged rats:)


Posted by Charles Buell, Seattle Home Inspector (Charles Buell Inspections Inc.) over 12 years ago
Charles, Thankfully we do not have the rat problems here. We have mice, 'possums, squirrels and stinky, but no rats to contend with.
Posted by TeamCHI - Complete Home Inspections, Inc., Home Inspectons - Nashville, TN area - 615.661.029 (Complete Home Inspections, Inc.) over 12 years ago

My parents had problems with rats at their Florida home about 9 months ago. It took quite a while for the exterminators to kill them off. A true problem creator if you don't get them under control.

Sean Allen

Posted by Sean Allen, International Financing Solutions (International Financing Solutions ) over 12 years ago
So Michael and Sean---have you seen the movie?  It is one of the best animated movies of all time---my ever so humble opinion:)
Posted by Charles Buell, Seattle Home Inspector (Charles Buell Inspections Inc.) over 12 years ago