Should I install a bathroom vent fan?

15 Replies

We're working on a flip (well, not exactly, it was a long term hold that we're about to sell), and I just noticed there's no bathroom fan in place in either of the two bathrooms. 

Normally, I'd install them, but the "attic" (so. california houses...) is rather low on this property and it'd be a bit of work to properly vent to outside. 

Wondering if anyone knows if buyers will care about it, and if I should just install now. Both bathrooms DO have windows, but we found that one of the bathrooms had mold. As a reference, the house is worth about ~500K.

@Michael Wei ,

I think a buyer of a 500k home will care to have a bathroom fan.It should help with the mold problem as well.

The answer to this question is always "Yes" ... not only is it a code requirement for bathrooms to have ventilation, it's just a good practice!

It is a definite yes. Without one your asking for mold problems in the future, and any educated buyer will be concerned about it.  Especially in that price range. 

Fans are cheap mold is expensive!

Yes and it is most likely not up to code without them. It must be an older home to have been built without them.

I'll vote no. Chances are a buyer will not notice at first. Buyers usually walk in and make a decision within a few minutes. At least in Michigan you are good so long as you have a window in terms of code. I agree I would want a vent fan in any house I was buying. An inspector will probably bring this to a potential buyer's attention. At that point you can offer a credit and save yourself the trouble

Wow, didn't expect to get such a response so quickly on the subject!

Looks like the consensus is probably to install one if possible, but they might not notice until an inspector points it out. I guess I'll figure out how much it'll cost to get someone to put a fan in, since i'm not crawling around in that low attic in July... I guess alternatively I could just "vent to attic", but that kind of construction disgusts me, and would probably be quickly detected by an inspector...

Thanks!

Venting into an attic isn't code compliant.

In my town in NJ it is required by code to install a vent fan when redoing a bathroom. 

if you have walls already open and if it's a wood frame construction - it's NOTHING to install the vent to outside. I'm just thinkin' hard if I want to chisel a 1+foot thick brick wall to install outside venting. For stick walls - i wouldn't doubt a sec

Its also not a big deal to frame a box on the roof to accommodate the exhaust duct or vent and motor. It can actually be done fairly quick, Install 1,2 ,3 patch up and paint drywall, easy. Your done with it, buyers will like it and you will be code conforming. Actually if the house was built as is typically no one is going to make you bring it up to code but it will make a difference to a potential buyer. If they have mold after they buy it believe me you are going to hear about it one way or the other. 

Yes, put the fan in.

Originally posted by Account Closed:
I'll vote no. Chances are a buyer will not notice at first. Buyers usually walk in and make a decision within a few minutes. At least in Michigan you are good so long as you have a window in terms of code. I agree I would want a vent fan in any house I was buying. An inspector will probably bring this to a potential buyer's attention. At that point you can offer a credit and save yourself the trouble

 Will you buy a house without a fan and mold in the bathrooms?

@manolo   Would you want a house without a refrigerator?  Yet every day all across the country people buy homes with no appliances.   Nobody said the bathroom has mold.   You're a contractor so surely you know a fan can be added.  The question is by whom?   

  I'm in a beach house on Sanibel Island at the moment and even though this is steamy Southwest Fl there is no fan.   And no mold.   Ops house has made it this far without one.   Would I make a six figure decision based on a 60 dollar fan.  So yes I'd buy a house without a fan.    I just sold a house without a fan.  Buyer didn't say anything.   I'm not in the business of making houses perfect.  I buy them cheap and sell for a profit.  Why get into electrical and cutting into the roof when it won't affect your sale. Even if the buyer notices I would bet you that a realtor will say oh that's not a big deal.   You can add a fan. 

Join the Largest Real Estate Investing Community

Basic membership is free, forever.