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moisture ant damage to exterior wall framing

We just bought a house in the Seattle area, built in 1946, that is a bit of a fixer-upper. It has a converted attic and basement. When we opened up some of the exterior walls in a main floor bedroom, we found disaster: extensive rot and moisture ant damage to the wall framing. There are two areas of damage; both are at inside corners where water has seeped in through gaps in the exterior cedar shake siding up near the roof line/gutters. The house was insulated with old batts that look like they are made of brown paper, and this provided a nice home for the moisture ants. In both areas, the ants completely disintegrated the top half of the corner studs, and also ate through part of the adjacent studs on either side of the inside corner, and it looks like the bottom plate and top plate are damaged as well. These corners support the roof rafters which converge and sit above the corner studs. We'd like to know what process will likely be needed to repair the framing, and how much to expect it to drain our bank account!

Re: moisture ant damage to exterior wall framing

While nobody here has a repair total for you, we can all agree that you opened a can of worms. Surprise surprise.

1. Did the seller provide you a termite inspection through escrow?
2. Did you buy the house "as is" without inspecting it?
3. Contact a real estate lawyer and see if there is any way to go after the seller and his agent (unless you bought from a FSBO), for not disclosing "a material fact" about the house.

Other than that, where do you begin? You begin by calling general contractors in your area. Look for those who come with valid and true references, recommendations and experience. Good luck, you'll need it.

A. Spruce
Re: moisture ant damage to exterior wall framing

I agree with dj, it is going to take a local contractor doing his own inspection to give you an idea of cost, extent of damage, course of repair, and duration of repair. If you don't have a trusted contractor, then consult with trusted friends and relatives for a tradesman that they would recommend. After that, you are blind calling from the phone book. You want at least three estimates if you are interviewing new tradesmen for the job.

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