exterior of a modern two story house with stucco.  There is a two car garage with a concrete driveway.  The house is in a development in the suburbs.

Synthetic Stucco can be problematic

Synthetic stucco also called Exterior Insulated Finish System (EIFS) has positive attributes:

  1. Less expensive than conventional stucco
  2. Fairly easy and fast to install
  3. Can provide a very attractive appearance to the exterior of the home
  4. Economically provides the appearance of expensive masonry details

Unfortunately, EIFS can be problematic:

  1. Moisture and water intrusion can create mold and wood rot inside the walls, EIFS tends ot hold onto moisture.
  2. The wood rot can ultimately create structural issues.
  3. It’s very important to seal all penetrations (electrical outlets, dryer vents, window frames, door frames)
  4. Poor workmanship is very common. The material must be installed exactly as recommended by the manufacturer. Even then it can be problematic.
  5. There have been class-action lawsuits associated with EIFS

As a result of the concern, most inspectors will recommend further evaluation of the EIFS by a specialist. EIFS inspections are performed by specifically trained inspectors with specialized tools. EIFS inspections can be time-consuming and invasive.

Usually, the presence of EIFS doesn’t develop into a serious issue, but sometimes it does.

For more related information click on this link:


Download PDF


Real Estate expected Useful Life Chart

When it comes to real estate, people often talk about the “expected useful life” of components.  So, I thought it might be helpful for you to have chart that gives some actual time frames.  Keep in mind that because there are so many variables, expected useful life numbers are just best guesses.  This one is from Florida but it’s still pretty good.

For more related information click on this link: https://safeharborinspections.com/


Equipment and Material Life Expectancy Chart

Air conditioning compressor 12 to 15 years
Asphalt driveways 20 to 25 years
Fiberglass/asphalt roof shingles 20 to 25 years
Architectural fiberglass/asphalt roof shingles 25 to 35 years
Boilers, hot water or steam 25 to 40 years
Brick and concrete patios 15 to 25 years
Brick and stone walls 50 to 100 years
Built-up roofing, asphalt 15 to 20 years
Cast-iron sinks 15 to 20 years
Central air-conditioning unit 15 to 20 years
Clothing dryers 10 to 15 years
Clothing washer 12 to 15 years
Concrete block foundations 100+ years
Concrete walks 10 to 20 years
Dishwashers 10 to 15 years
Electric ranges 10 to 15 years
Exhaust fans 5 to 10 years
Faucets 10 to 15 years
Fences 10 to 15 years
Floor tile 30 to 40 years
Forced air furnaces, heat pumps 15 to 20 years
Freezers 10 to 20 years
Garage door openers 8 to 12 years
Garage doors 20 to 25 years
Garbage disposals 8 to 10 years
Gutters and downspouts 15 to 20 years
Microwave ovens 10 to 15 years
Ovens and cooktops 10 to 20 years
Poured concrete foundations 100+ years
Refrigerators 10 to 15 years
Rooftop air conditioners 15 to 20 years
Siding, aluminum 20 to 40 years
Siding, vinyl 30 to 45 years
Siding, wood 25 to 40 years
Slate roofs 40 to 100 years
Smoke detectors 10 years
Sprinkler systems 10 to 15 years
Stucco 20 to 40+ years
Sump pumps 5 to 10 years
Swimming pools 15 to 20 years
Termite treatment 5 to 7 years
Termite treatment, bait Stations Indefinitely if being maintained
Waste pipes, cast-iron 50 to 70 years
Water heaters – conventional

Water heaters – indirect fired

Water heaters – high efficiency

8 to 12 years

12 to 20 years

12 to 15 years

Window AC units 5 to 10 years
Wooden decks 10 to 20 years


Download PDF