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Finished Attic With No Heat Registers

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Tom4value

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Dec 4, 2016
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Certified Residential Appraiser
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Massachusetts
Doing an FHA appraisal on a 1950's cape COD where the two bedrooms on the second floor are finished but heat is drawn from the first floor. This is common in capes of this age. Since it is been some time since I appraised something like this, I checked the 4000.1 and couldn't find anything directly addressing this except to note that the "heating system must adequately heat the dwelling to 50 degrees". This temp is fine for the second floor. Any thoughts? I have two bedrooms on first floor so if I need to include in GLA but not call them bedrooms I can.
Thanks
 

J Grant

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Dec 9, 2003
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Florida
Not sure what that means, "heat is drawn from the first floor". Do the upstairs bedrooms each have a heat source, such as baseboard heating ? ( FHA-All habitable rooms must have a functioning heat source (except in a few select cities with mild winters).

" I have two bedrooms on first floor so if I need to include in GLA but not call them bedrooms I can. "

If you have 2 bedrooms on the first floor, why would you not call them bedrooms?
 

Tom4value

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Dec 4, 2016
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Massachusetts
Not sure what that means, "heat is drawn from the first floor". Do the upstairs bedrooms each have a heat source, such as baseboard heating ? ( FHA-All habitable rooms must have a functioning heat source (except in a few select cities with mild winters).

" I have two bedrooms on first floor so if I need to include in GLA but not call them bedrooms I can. "

If you have 2 bedrooms on the first floor, why would you not call them bedrooms?
It is a cape COD home where the heat for the second floor is drawn from the open stairwell.
What I meant to say was there are two bedrooms on the first floor and the two finished rooms with closets on the second floor. If I don't include the second floor rooms as bedrooms, I can still call the dwelling a two bedroom home. Can you please reference where you got your quote from (i.e., page of the 4000.1)? I can't find it.
Thanks
 

J Grant

Elite Member
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Dec 9, 2003
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Florida
I'll have to hunt for the page later - it was part of a list of items required from 4000.1 I had saved. Imo heat drifting up from the first floor to the second story does not qualify as heated or a heat source for those rooms- see what others think.

Yes, if the 2 rooms in the finished attic do not qualify under FHA guidelines as bedrooms due to lack of heat source it would be a 2 bedroom home with bonus rooms upstairs, or a 2 bedroom home with a finished non heated attic...see what others say
 

Carnivore

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Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
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State
North Carolina
I would be careful because you called it a cape COD, but that doesn't necessary mean you have total finished habital area on the second floor. ANSI-765-2013 describes how to calculate 2nd floor GLA

http://birminghamappraisalblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/ansi-measuring-standards-2013.pdf


Ceiling Height Requirements

To be included in finished square footage calculations, finished areas must have a ceiling height of at least 7 feet

(2.13 meters) except under beams, ducts, and other obstructions where the height may be 6 feet 4 inches (1.93

meters); under stairs where there is no specified height requirement; or where the ceiling is sloped. If a room’s ceiling is sloped, at least one-half of the finished square footage in that room must have a vertical ceiling height of at least 7 feet (2.13 meters); no portion of the finished area that has a height of less than 5 feet (1.52 meters) may be included in finished square footage.

----------------------------
 
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timd354

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Jan 11, 2008
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Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Maryland
Imo heat drifting up from the first floor to the second story does not qualify as heated or a heat source for those rooms- see what others think.
Why not, if that is sufficient to heat the rooms? Heat does rise, and I live in a Cape (which I now rent out) and always closed off the register on the second floor in the winter as the heat rising from the first floor provided plenty of heat to keep the second floor warm. I suspect that any Cape that is well insulated would not need second floor heat registers in order to sufficiently heat the second floor
 
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Carnivore

Elite Member
Supporting Member
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Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
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State
North Carolina
I have seen register vents in the 2nd floor that led to the first floor facilitating heat rise. If spaced correctly it does pretty well.

Now, OTH how your market reacts to this is probably a tough call. Remember in hotter climates heat raises and it might be quite an oven upstairs during the summer
 

J Grant

Elite Member
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Dec 9, 2003
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Florida
Why not, if that is sufficient to heat the rooms? Heat does rise, and I used to own a Cape and always closed off the register on the second floor in the winter as the heat rising from the first floor provided plenty of heat to keep the second floor warm. I suspect that any Cape that is well insulated would not need second floor heat registers in order to sufficiently heat the second floor

It would be up to FHA to determine what qualifies as a heat source for their lending purpose, not you or I personally, would you agree? That was what I was trying to pass along to the OP who asked about it. It is not clear if this subject is built as a Cape COD, or a house with a finished attic with bedrooms made out of the finished attic? What would differentiate the two.....The tittle of thread is finished attic with no heat registers...
 

J Grant

Elite Member
Joined
Dec 9, 2003
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Florida
I have seen register vents in the 2nd floor that led to the first floor facilitating heat rise. If spaced correctly it does pretty well.

Now, OTH how your market reacts to this is probably a tough call. Remember in hotter climates heat raises and it might be quite an oven upstairs during the summer
Register vents imo is a heat source, as opposed to relying on heat drifting up from the first floor.

The tittle of thread is finished attic with no heat registers...
 

timd354

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 11, 2008
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Maryland
It would be up to FHA to determine what qualifies as a heat source for their lending purpose, not you or I personally, would you agree? That was what I was trying to pass along to the OP who asked about it. It is not clear if this house is a house built as a Cape COD, or a house with a finished attic with bedrooms made out of the finished attic? What would differentiate the two.....
the FHA has no requirement for a heat source to be present in every individual room. The FHA protocol states that the heat source must be sufficient to heat all rooms in the home to at least 50 degrees F. If that is accomplished through heat rising from the first floor, then the FHA requirement is satisfied. By the way, that is not my opinion, that is a fact, based on the FHA valuation protocol
 
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