Comprehensive Log Cabin Inspection Checklist
This detailed log cabin inspection checklist is meant to give you a more thorough understanding of all the systems and items that require inspection. It is not a substitute for a visit by a professional home inspector but it will give you ideas for further investigation and suggested repairs.
Exterior Cabin Inspection
Site ConditionsIs the site sufficiently graded and drained?Do large trees or limbs lean over the cabin?Are there large trees or shrubs next to the cabin?Does the driveway surface require resurfacing or repairs?Are walkways clear?Are fences in good repair and bases not rotting?Is propane tank securely mounted and safe?
RoofAre shingles curling, cracked, or missing?Are gutters full of granules from asphalt shingles?Is roof uneven indicating several layers of shingles?Are there asphalt cement patches on the roof?Does the roof ridge sag?Are there any gaps around chimneys and flashing?
Flashing, Gutters and DownspoutsIs there rust, missing parts, or asphalt patches evident on any valleys or flashings?Are gutters drained correctly, clean, and rust-free?Do gutter connections leak?Are downspouts loose, damaged, or missing?Are downspouts connected to underground drains or splash blocks?
Basement and FoundationAre there water stains on walls, indicating flooding?Does basement smell musty?Is there adequate ventilation or a dehumidifier?Is there a crawlspace vapor barrier?Are there any signs of sagging floors, bowed or rotten support posts, or temporary shoring to hold up weak floors?Do supply and waste pipes appear in good condition?Is there evidence of seepage on the foundation wall?Is foundation mortar soft, crumbling, cracked, or missing?Does the ground slope away from the foundation outside?
Fireplaces and ChimneysIs masonry cracked, in need of re-pointing, or missing bricks?Are chimney flues lined?Are fireplaces usable and do they smoke?Are dampers installed and operable?
Exterior WallsAre log walls plumb without bowing or stepping?•Is masonry cracked, missing, or deteriorating?Is log finish in good condition?Do doors and windows fit frames squarely?Does the trim need painting or staining?
Porches and DecksDo porches and decks properly slope away from the cabin?Is there evidence of rot around column bases, posts, stairs or balusters?Are there secure handrails, posts, and railings on porches and decks?Is there unusual settling of the porch foundation?Is the underside of the porch or deck adequately ventilated?Are railings and stairs adequately fastened to log walls?
DoorsAre exterior doors solid and securely hung to jambs?Do doors have deadbolt locks?Is there adequate weather stripping on the doors?Are there storm doors?Are doors misaligned indicating settling of logs?
Rot and InsectsAre there signs of rot or insect damage under porches or steps or on bottom logs?Does wood appear spongy or brittle on window sills, framing sills, beams, or posts?Is there any sign of rot from leaks on the roof decking, fascias, or overhangs?Are logs or other wood less than 8 inches from the ground?
Interior Cabin Inspection
InteriorAre there any cracks in the drywall?Are there gaps in the tongue-and-groove paneling?Does the floor or staircase bounce or squeak?Are all stair rails and balusters solid?Is hardwood flooring in good repair?Are the cabin floors level?Do cabinets and built-ins work properly?
WindowsDo windows line up squarely in their frames?Are window frames and trim properly sealed to logs?Do the windows operate smoothly or bind from log settling?Are the windows loose in their frames?Do the windows lock?Is there any fogging on insulated glass?
KitchenAre cabinets and countertops worn?Do all appliances work?Do exhaust fans work?Is there any sign of moisture problems?
AtticIs there functioning storage space?How is the attic access?Are there signs of leaks around valleys, dormers, chimneys, or penetrations?Does light indicate missing shingles or damaged roofing?Is cabin attic ventilated?Is there visible mildew or damaged wood?Are cabin rafters bowed?Is there visible soffit and ridge ventilation?Are rafter plates deteriorated?
BathroomsDoes bathroom fan work and sound normal?Do all faucets work?Do sinks, tub and showers drain easily?Is there any water damage to walls around the tub or shower?Does the toilet drip from valves behind the toilet?Is the mirror delaminating?
Electrical SystemTest all light switches and outlets during cabin inspection?Are there breakers and not fuses?Is the service at least 100 amps, preferably 200 amps?Are breakers labeled?Are there GFCI outlets at all wet locations?Are there enough outlets in every room?Do all receptacles and switches work?Is there 220 volt service for the electric range, air conditioners, and clothes dryer?Are the refrigerator, micro-wave oven, dishwasher, clothes washer, and other large appliances on individual circuits?Are there extra circuit breaker spaces for later expansion?Are there waterproof exterior outlets?
PlumbingIs piping galvanized, copper, PVC or PEX?Do faucets leak or toilets run?Is water pressure adequate for the entire cabin?Are there basement cutoffs to upstairs appliances?Does each appliance have its own supply cutoff?Are drain pipes noisy when toilets are flushed?What is the age of the water heater (from serial number)?Are sink and tub drains slow?
Heating and Air ConditioningHow old is the heating and cooling system?Is the furnace/air conditioner thermostat operational?Is hot water capacity sufficient?Is vent pipe in good condition?Is there a furnace filter you can see?
Energy ConservationIs there insulation between the attic joists?How much insulation is in the attic?Is there insulation in the exterior walls?Does the cabin roof have a vapor barrier?Are hot water pipes insulated?Are hot air ducts insulated in unheated areas?
This detailed log cabin inspection checklist will help you evaluate a potential log home purchase by suggesting many items and systems to investigate. I highly recommend hiring a professional log home inspector who will have his own thorough cabin inspection checklist and who can use his experience and knowledge to correctly identify critical issues and major repair areas.
Return from Cabin Inspection Checklist to Home Inspection page
Return from Cabin Inspection Checklist to Log Cabin Connection home