How Much Does Attic Cleaning Cost?
An attic is often overlooked when it comes to cleaning, but that doesn’t mean homeowners should ignore it. Attic cleaning cost ranges from $150 to $1,000, with the national average at $200.
- The typical price range for attic cleaning is between $150 and $1,000, with a national average cost of $200.
- The exact cost will be determined by the size and condition of the attic and the type of cleaning service selected.
- A homeowner will want to schedule an attic cleaning if they notice signs of rodents or mold in their attic, or if their home temperature is inconsistent.
- An attic in good condition may not require professional cleaning, but if the space is very dirty or requires decontamination, it’s best to hire professional cleaners.
Many homeowners don’t think about the state of their attic until there is something noticeably wrong with it. Without regular cleaning and maintenance, an attic can get very dirty and even become a cozy spot for squirrels, mice, roof rats, and birds to make a home. A neglected attic can become a breeding ground for mold and mildew growth that can trigger asthma and other respiratory illnesses. Water leaks and rodents can destroy the attic insulation and lead to a reduction in energy efficiency and higher heating and cooling bills. A professional attic cleaning can keep the space clean and help prevent serious issues from developing.
How much does attic cleaning cost? According to Angi, the cost of attic cleaning ranges from $150 to $1,000, with many homeowners spending about $200 on average. Attic cleaning service cost varies due to numerous factors, such as the presence of rodents, pests, or mold; the size and accessibility of the attic space; and the need for repairs or insulation replacement. Attic cleanup and decontamination professionals wear protective clothing and safety equipment to protect themselves from rodent droppings and mold. The average price for attic cleaning and sanitizing runs from $1 to $1.50 per square foot, with insulation removal typically included in the price. An attic cleaning service usually charges a flat rate for disinfecting and deodorizing, but it’s always a good idea for homeowners to check with local attic cleaning companies to see if they charge a separate price for that service. This guide will examine the factors that influence attic cleaning cost, the different types of attic cleaning, the signs that an attic needs a professional cleaning, and some frequently asked questions about attic cleaning services and attic restoration cost.
Factors in Calculating Attic Cleaning Cost
While many homeowners spend an average of $200 to clean an attic, attic cleaning cost can vary from the national average due to a few factors. These can include attic size, attic condition, and the type of cleaning service that’s needed. Ultimately, the final price will be worth it to keep a home in good condition and avoid costly issues and repairs.
Attic size is the main factor in determining the cleaning cost. The larger the attic, the more time it will take to clean. If insulation needs to be replaced, it will cost more for a bigger attic than for a smaller one. Insulation prices generally range from $1 to $7 per square foot.
The state of the attic space also affects the overall cleaning price. If the attic has mold, mildew, insects, rodents, or birds living inside, extra care will be needed to remove any biowaste and mold. If there are cracks or holes that are allowing wildlife or moisture inside, they will need to be repaired and plugged. Even a small crack can let in enough rainwater and moisture to encourage mold growth, which can lead to significant health issues for those living in the house. If the attic is in good condition and just needs a good cleaning, the cost will be significantly less than an attic that needs more extensive cleaning, deodorizing, and decontamination. If a homeowner has invested in the cost to finish an attic, the condition of the space is typically better than that of an unfinished space.
Cleaning Service Type
Deodorizing, decontamination, and disinfecting are the most common aspects of attic cleaning. Ideally, homeowners will have these tasks completed at least once a year, even if the attic is cleaned regularly. Other types of attic cleaning include junk removal, rodent-proofing, mold and fungus treatment, and insulation removal or replacement. Each of these different types of attic cleaning services is discussed below.
Types of Attic Cleaning
Attic cleaning involves various services to avoid serious future problems. It’s beneficial for homeowners to have an attic cleaning professional take a look around to see exactly what types of cleaning services are needed. Attic cleaning procedures can include decontamination, deodorizing, disinfecting, junk removal, rodent-proofing, mold and fungus treatment, and insulation removal or replacement.
Attic decontamination includes removing hazardous biowaste, such as venomous insects and rodent droppings, from the area. The cost of decontamination services ranges from $1.50 to $3 per square foot. Since attic spaces are usually poorly ventilated, it’s very important to remove the hazardous waste to protect occupants from breathing in rodent droppings. A big concern regarding rodent infestation is that people can contract serious infectious diseases even after the rodents have been removed. Contact with rodent droppings, urine, and nesting materials can cause harm during the decontamination, cleanup, and removal phases. It’s recommended for homeowners to have a professional attic cleaning company complete this service since it will have the correct personal protective equipment, such as respirators and biohazard suits, to safeguard employees from diseases. Attic decontamination professionals will not allow contaminants to spread during removal and know how to clean an attic after a rodent infestation.
Deodorizing and Disinfecting
After the decontamination process, a professional will deodorize and disinfect the attic area. Getting rid of offensive odors and the remaining bits of biowaste in the attic usually costs a flat fee of between $100 and $200 on average.
Sometimes a new homeowner will inherit an attic that contains furniture and boxes full of unwanted items from the previous owner. It’s common for an attic to become a catchall for objects that get stashed away and forgotten. If the attic has become a space that’s filled with junk, part of the cleaning process needs to include junk removal. The cost for this service runs from $130 to $360. Attic cleaners typically don’t provide this service, so a homeowner may need to hire a junk removal service before the cleaners can scrub the attic space.
If the attic shows signs of mice, rats, squirrels, or other animals living in the area, they will need to be removed and prevention methods enacted. While not always necessary for every attic, rodent removal costs range from $170 to $570, depending on the type of rodent, the extent of the infestation, and whether they caused any damage that needs to be repaired. Rodent proofing an attic can cost from $125 to $200 in addition to the rodent removal. Some attic cleaning companies may handle this part of the process, but a homeowner may need to hire an exterminator. It’s always good for homeowners to double-check if their attic cleaning company of choice covers rodent removal and rodent-proofing services.
Mold or Fungus Treatment
Attics are at risk of mold and fungus growth since they are prone to leaks and higher humidity levels. Cracks in the roof, walls, or ceiling can lead to mold and mildew growth and need to be repaired as quickly as possible. If the space experiences higher than normal levels of moisture and humidity, a dehumidifier can help reduce the chances of mold and mildew infestation. It’s important that homeowners hire a professional to tackle any mold issues since it’s easy for an inexperienced DIYer to spread mold spores throughout the attic or to other areas of the home. If mold has permeated the insulation, it will need to be removed and the insulation will need to be replaced. The cost of mold remediation services can range from $1,000 to $3,400, in addition to the cleaning and disinfecting costs.
Insulation Removal or Replacement
If a home’s attic insulation is contaminated by mold or rodent droppings, it will need to be removed. Removal costs are typically covered with the price of decontamination, but it’s always recommended that homeowners check with their attic cleaning company to see if it’s a separate charge. Attic insulation prevents warm air from escaping out of the roof during the cold winter months and prevents the hot air from getting inside the house during the summer. If the insulation is damaged or contaminated, it will cause the HVAC system to work overtime and result in more expensive heating and cooling bills. Attic cleaning and insulation cost can range from $1,500 to $3,000, with many homeowners spending between $1 and $7 per square foot. Insulation pricing can vary because of the different types of insulation and the size of the attic space. Below are some of the common types of attic insulation and the average price ranges for each.
- Batt insulation. Fiberglass batt insulation requires the installer to wear personal protective gear for protection against the material. Rockwool insulation can withstand extreme temperatures and adds a layer of soundproofing to the attic. Low-density cotton insulation is made from recycled materials. It doesn’t contain formaldehyde and does not cause respiratory issues like fiberglass batt insulation can. The average price range for this type of insulation ranges from $0.30 to $1.50 per square foot, or between $1,000 and $2,400 in total.
- Blown-in insulation. Easier to install than batt insulation, blown-in insulation can be inserted into even the smallest crevices without difficulty. It costs between $975 and $2,200 total for blown-in insulation.
- Fiberglass insulation. Fiberglass insulation is less dense and can have a fluffy texture after it’s installed, which can decrease the insulation properties over time. This type of insulation can cost from $0.30 to $1.50 per square foot.
- Radiant barrier insulation. Instead of absorbing heat energy, radiant barrier insulation panels reflect it. This can help reduce cooling costs during the hot summer months. Radiant barrier insulation costs from $0.20 to $0.95 per square foot, or around $1,700 on average.
- Spray foam insulation. This type of insulation is water-resistant and ranges in price from $1 to $2 per square foot.
Do I Need Attic Cleaning?
Many homeowners postpone attic cleaning so they can focus on more obvious repairs and maintenance around the home. There are a few red flags that signal the attic needs attention, including rodent or pest infestation, signs of mold or mildew, unpleasant odors, excessive dust, allergy symptoms, increased energy bills, and inconsistent home temperature.
Rodent or Pest Infestation
If there is evidence of rodents and pests living elsewhere in a home, chances are they’re also in the attic. An attic provides an ideal environment for rodents and pests to live. Insulation supplies a cozy spot for rodents to sleep, hide their babies, and store food. The area is usually dark and secluded without many people coming and going to scare any pests away. If homeowners notice signs of an infestation, such as insect or rodent droppings; clawing, scratching, or squeaking sounds; offensive odors; or live pests or dead rodents in the house, it’s important for them to call in attic cleaning professionals to take care of the infestation.
Signs of Mold or Mildew
Mold and mildew in a home can cause not only respiratory issues but also structural damage. Mold and mildew growth can be a sign of a water leak in the roof, walls, or ceiling, which left untreated can lead to a risk of collapse. Kitchen and bathroom exhaust fans are sometimes vented into the attic. This can cause mold and mildew to grow in the attic due to the higher humidity levels. After getting rid of a mold infestation with an attic cleaning, the moisture issues can be resolved by hiring an attic professional.
For homeowners who notice unpleasant odors in their home but can’t quite figure out where it originates, don’t forget to check the attic. Bad smells can come from dead rodents, mold and mildew growth, water damage, wet insulation, plant growth, and more. After a homeowner finds the reason for the unpleasant odor, increased ventilation in the attic will help increase airflow and improve circulation.
If the attic is neglected for long enough, the dirt and dust that accumulate can make its way through the HVAC system and out the vents into the main part of the house. Excessive dust in the home can also be a sign of a termite or rodent issue since they burrow into the items stored in the attic or into the structure itself.
If family members are wheezing, sneezing, or coughing more than usual, it could be caused by a dirty attic. While viruses and pollen can cause the same symptoms, it’s important to rule out any types of issues in the attic that may be a new allergen source. Elements like mold, mildew, termite debris, rodent carcasses, pest droppings, or dander can cause an increase in cold-like symptoms.
Increased Energy Bills
If the HVAC unit is working extra hard and the heating and cooling bills are getting higher, there are a few things that may be to blame. If there are no new appliances in the home, the attic may be the issue. Old and worn-out insulation or clogged air ducts can cause a home to be energy inefficient. If an attic is extra dirty and dusty, this debris can clog up the ducts and cause the heating and cooling system to use more energy.
Inconsistent Home Temperature
A well-insulated home should stay at a consistent temperature year-round. Changes in the internal temperature of a home can be caused by problems with the insulation in the attic. Old insulation is less effective and should be removed and replaced.
Attic Cleaning: DIY vs. Hiring a Professional
If the attic just needs a deep cleaning and there is no risk of spreading mold spores or breathing in dangerous pest droppings, moving out any junk from the space is something that can be easily done by a homeowner. Many homeowners prefer to clean out their own attic space if they don’t have to deal with mold or pest infestations. It’s strongly recommended for homeowners to use a professional attic cleaning service to survey any issues in the attic and tackle the decontamination, deodorizing, disinfecting, and cleaning of the space. If a homeowner suspects they might have dangerous conditions in the attic, an expert can remedy the problems before it progresses into an expensive project. Catching a mold or rodent infestation early can save on attic cleaning cost.
How to Save Money on Attic Cleaning Cost
Having an attic professionally cleaned can save money on heating and cooling costs, and it can make a home more comfortable when excess dust and debris are eliminated. Hiring a professional attic cleaning company is an extra expense, and most homeowners want to save as much money as possible. Below are some money-saving tips for hiring an attic cleaning service.
- Get multiple estimates. Get at least three estimates from reputable attic cleaning professionals in your area to find a price that works with your budget.
- Have a yard sale. If there are pieces of furniture, trinkets, artwork, or old toys and clothing taking up space in the attic, consider selling them to offset the price of hiring an attic cleaning company.
- Purchase a dehumidifier. If excess humidity is causing mold and mildew growth in the attic, installing a dehumidifier to remove the extra moisture in the area will help prevent expensive mold remediation in the future.
- Do some of the work yourself. Removing items from the attic on your own can help save on junk removal costs.
- Ask about package deals. Some attic cleaning companies also provide repair services, junk removal, decontamination, or mold treatments. If the attic needs more than just a cleaning, ask if there are any package deals for multiple services.
Questions to Ask About Attic Cleaning
Asking an attic cleaning professional the right questions can help avoid miscommunication and save money. By asking the following questions, a homeowner can better understand attic cleaning costs and the various steps of the process.
- Are you licensed and insured?
- How long have you been cleaning attics?
- Will you provide references?
- Do you have examples of previous attic cleaning jobs?
- How often should my attic be cleaned?
- What is your attic cleaning process?
- Why is attic cleaning important?
- How long will the attic cleaning take?
- Do you provide free estimates?
- Can I get the estimate in writing?
- Who will clean my attic?
- Do you handle repairs?
- What is your process for decontamination, deodorizing, and disinfecting?
- Will you remove unwanted items from the attic and haul them away?
- Do you offer rodent-proofing services?
- Do you handle mold or fungus treatment?
- Do you hire subcontractors for any part of the attic cleaning process?
- Do you remove old insulation and install new insulation?
- Is there anything I can do to prep the area for cleaning?
- What is your payment plan?
- How can I leave a review of your work?
Cleaning an attic is a good way to reduce clutter, help prevent respiratory illnesses, and reduce heating and cooling bills. Many homeowners have questions about attic cleaning and what it entails. Below are some frequently asked questions about attic cleaning to help guide the decision-making process.
Q. How often should I clean my attic?
Attics will ideally be deep cleaned about once a year. It’s recommended that homeowners check for leaks, pests, mold, and strange odors once a month.
Q. How long does it take to clean an attic?
How long it takes to clean an attic depends on the size and how dirty it is. It typically takes a day to clean an average-size attic, but it can take longer for larger attics and if there are significant issues to remedy.
Q. How common is black mold in the attic?
Having mold in the attic is a common occurrence, and it can typically be remedied easily. It’s important to go up to the attic on a regular basis to check for the smell of mold and evidence of mold growth. Knowing what black mold looks like and smells like will ensure the problem is caught early and can be dealt with quickly. Having proper attic ventilation will prevent issues with mold and mildew.
Q. What can increase or decrease an attic cleaning cost?
There are two major factors that affect attic cleaning cost: the square footage and the extent of the issues. Larger attics will take longer to clean, which will increase the overall price. If there is a rodent infestation, the price to remove, decontaminate, deodorize, and disinfect the attic will be less if the infestation is new compared to if the rodents are well established in the space.
Q. What are some ways to save on attic cleaning costs?
One way to save on attic cleaning costs is to have a yard sale. Selling the items that are stored away in the attic can help pay for the cleaning costs. In addition, investing in a dehumidifier can help keep mold and mildew at bay in an attic.
Q. Can you clean the attic by yourself?
If an attic needs a good cleaning with a broom and vacuum, it’s a task that a homeowner can complete. Homeowners will always want to be aware of the state of the attic flooring when walking through or cleaning the space. One misstep can cause damage to the flooring or the ceiling of the rooms beneath. If the attic has a rodent infestation or mold issues, it’s recommended for homeowners to hire a pro to take care of the issues safely and efficiently.
Q. Should you vacuum your attic?
Vacuuming the attic is a good way to get rid of insects, dust mites, and allergens that can make their way into other areas of the home.
Sources: Angi (1 and 2), Airtasker