What Is An Exclusive Listing?
Insulbrick was a fast, easy, inexpensive shingle-like way to cover vertical walls on the exterior of a property in the first half of the 20th century. It was generally used on the sides and backs of some homes before the 1950’s. Eventually, vinyl siding began to replace it, and then aluminum. Because of the brick pattern that was printed on it, from a distance it can resemble and old brick wall, but it is actually made of asphalt, and in texture and shape resembles a roof shingle. It can still be found on some Toronto homes and garages today: Riverdale and Trinity Bellwoods come to mind as areas where the age of the houses mean Insulbrick can easily be spotted.
During the height of its popularity, there were several companies that made them. Insulbrick is actually the name everyone today uses for them. Though, it is a brand name like Q-Tip is a brand name for a cotton swab.
There is no need to sound the alarms or run for the hills, but there are some issues with Insulbrick. Downsides include their lack of insulating abilities (very low thermal resistance value). In some cases, moisture retention on the wood surface below it lead to rot or carpenter ants, general age and decay. Sometimes insurance companies require homeowners to remove and replace it. Being tar based, it is flammable and some types contain asbestos.
If you don’t know if you have Insulbrick on your existing property and would like to know for sure, contact a local handyman, contractor, or siding company. They can advise you on the best course of action and possible replacement options. If you are considering purchasing home that may have it, consult with an experienced home inspector on the issue. And, should the inspector find Insulbrick, call your insurance company before you make an offer on the property. Find out what their policy is on insuring it before it potentially becomes your issue to fix.
If all of this is too overwhelming for you, talk to us. We have the experience and contacts to help you out.
This post was written by Fox Marin Sales Representative, Ian Busher. With an extensive background in carpentry and contracting, Ian is our resident “Renovations Expert”! He takes pride in his ability to assess a house’s quality and condition; this, in tandem with his talent for speaking to the feasibility and cost of potential renovations, and his eye for the aesthetic details of a property, make him a powerful partner for anyone looking to buy a home in the Toronto real estate market.