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Old 10-22-2012, 12:17 PM   #1
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Raccoon Contamination, Asbestos and Re-Insulation


I'm closing on a house this week which has a pre-existing raccoon problem. There seems to be a family of raccoons living in the attic. So assuming I remove the raccoons, what to do from there? From what I understand raccoon waste is pretty nasty stuff and the house needs new insulation anyway. Should I hire a company to come in, remove the waste and insulation, decontaminate and re-insulate? Also, the house was built in 1939 so the chances that the original asbestos insulation is still up there are very high. Does this add to the cost of insulation removal? Any suggestions with this?

Thank you in advance!!

EDIT: I've also heard that homeowners insurance will cover this, but I'm pretty sure it's a big no-no to make a claim within the first week of owning a property. Any suggestion regarding this as well?

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Old 10-22-2012, 12:24 PM   #2
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Raccoon Contamination, Asbestos and Re-Insulation


Really should have gotten a price on getting rid of it and having the insulation tested before making an offer.
If it is you went from a DIY job to a several thousand dollar pro clean up job if it test for asbestos.
No insurace company I know of is going to pay anything for a claim on something you already knew about before even buying the house.

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Old 10-22-2012, 12:58 PM   #3
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Okay, not that it's really relevant to my question, but I actually renegotiated after inspection. I'm paying $33,000 less than asking price, $26,500 less than original offer. I'm paying about $73,000 less than comparable sales. The house is in rough shape. The attic issue is just one of many so I actually accounted for a large expense on this.

Financial advice aside, any suggestions regarding my question?
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Old 10-22-2012, 01:18 PM   #4
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Raccoon Contamination, Asbestos and Re-Insulation


Racoon sh!it smells reall bad.....they typically don't dump where they bunk....but use the poop to mark an area....

Your going to have to get the moma and babies out....that could be tough.....call an expert.....make sure it's one that traps instead of killing....the right way is to relocate the family....and then make sure no paths exist to get back in.
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Old 10-22-2012, 01:29 PM   #5
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Cool. That's what I'm thinking. Interesting you say getting the mom and babies out is going to be tough. Curious what the reason is for that? Maybe the babies are difficult to trap because they don't actually forage for food themselves? The city has animal control who will deliver live traps then come pick them up once you trap which is nice.

Sounds like I've got my work cut out for me just getting rid of these guys.
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Old 10-22-2012, 01:37 PM   #6
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+1

It is pretty ripe stuff.

Get the little buggers out and get the attic vacuumed clean.
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Old 10-22-2012, 01:40 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Windows on Wash View Post
and get the attic vacuumed clean.
Yep, I've read that they'll remove all insulation, use some fogger or something, do odor elimination, use kilz on any pee-pee spots then install new insulation. I guess that's probably the way to go.
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Old 10-22-2012, 01:51 PM   #8
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Be sure to air seal once they have it all cleaned up.

Spray all the top plates and seal that place up tight.
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Old 10-22-2012, 01:52 PM   #9
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Spray all the top plates and seal that place up tight.
Stupid questions:

What are top plates?

and

Spray with what?
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Old 10-22-2012, 01:52 PM   #10
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Top plates are the top of the wall assembly and spray or seal with sealant, foam, caulking, etc.
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Old 10-22-2012, 01:54 PM   #11
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Gotcha. Makes sense. Thanks.
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Old 10-22-2012, 01:59 PM   #12
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Here, by law, trappers of raccoons have to dispose of them (although I am sure some catch and release them). Raccoon feces can carry some EXTREMELY DANGEROUS things that can make especially the young and the old really sick with respiratory diseases. Be very careful. And add to that your possible asbestos issues (why do you assume asbestos by the way? It was not that common in loose insualation) and you should probably have this dealt with professionally. If you just bring in Labor Ready people with shovels, contractor bags and sop vacs you could be liable if they get sick---immediately or down the road a bit.

Raccoons, cute as they are in some ways, are not animals you want to deal with cornered into a flight or fight situation and they can really do a nasty number on your pet dog or cat in a few seconds. Best to hire a trapper. Most will keep coming back and rebaiting traps until they get them all. Might as well look up and post the number of the vet emergency hospital in a handy place.

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Old 10-22-2012, 02:04 PM   #13
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Here, by law, trappers of raccoons have to dispose of them (although I am sure some catch and release them). Raccoon feces can carry some EXTREMELY DANGEROUS things that can make especially the young and the old really sick with respiratory diseases. Be very careful. And add to that your possible asbestos issues (why do you assume asbestos by the way? It was not that common in loose insualation) and you should probably have this dealt with professionally. If you just bring in Labor Ready people with shovels, contractor bags and sop vacs you could be liable if they get sick---immediately or down the road a bit.
My assumption was based purely on the time that the year the house was built. I've done no research yet about that time period and attic insulation so it was just purely an assumption. I'm leaning pretty heavily toward having a company who specifically does animal decontamination in attics and re-insulation.

It's such a shame that the previous homeowner wouldn't have just filed a claim to have ALL of this work done for the cost of his deductible. I suppose it's not entirely too late since he still owns the house and it's insured. Maybe I'll do a beg and barter thing. Give him $1k to get this done on his insurance. Once the house is in my name I'm thinking I've got no choice but to pay out of pocket.
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Old 10-23-2012, 11:11 AM   #14
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Post up a picture of the insulation. Vermiculite was not as popular as commonly thought to be.
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Old 10-23-2012, 11:16 AM   #15
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Post up a picture of the insulation. Vermiculite was not as popular as commonly thought to be.
I will definitely do that... closing on the house tomorrow at 2pm EST so I'll have a chance to take pics then and really assess the situation re: insulation.

Oh, and if anyone wants some pet raccoons, I'm adopting them out. No re-homing fee. Good with cats, dogs and they love babies/kids.

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