What Is A Soffit Ceiling?

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Houses have unique architectural or engineering styles. These allow the professionals to be precise in their design and building of structures. One example is soffit. 

You might not know this; you could have a soffit ceiling. Although the style of using soffit boards come and go, some homes still use these types of ceilings. Now, the style has recently made a comeback, which is why you might not be familiar with soffit ceilings. Even if you have heard a designer or contractor talking about a soffit ceiling, it’s understandable if you don’t know what it means. 

Soffit Ceiling Defined

Soffit ceilings are portions or ceilings that have been built to fit certain areas or portions. They’re commonly used to project the placement of a beam, resulting in a lower level compared with those in the other portions of the house. These are commonly used to give an area a warmer or comfortable feeling. This is why you can find some in the kitchen of older houses.

Reasons To Have Soffit Ceiling

There are other reasons for having a soffit ceiling. Here are some that might interest you:

1. Ventilation

One purpose of installing a soffit ceiling has something to do with airflow. As soffit ceilings are placed where some attic space should be, it gives extra room for heat to build up and air to flow through. Some soffit designs even come with ventilations. This is especially helpful for both winter and summertime. 

This prevents too much buildup of heat which rots wood, especially during summer as the airflow allows less humidity and moisture to gather. The buildup facilitates the development of mold or mildew causing other health hazards for homeowners. In winter, soffit ceilings heat up the attic, creating a natural deterrent for the freezing of internal gutters. Overall, this could save you money and headaches, providing natural airflow for all seasons. 

2. Aesthetics

Some people value aesthetics even more than function. If you’re one of those types of people, you might consider installing some soffit ceilings. With this style, your ceiling won’t look plain and dull. It completes the look of your interior as well as exterior ceilings. 

Soffit ceilings come in different types of materials. In fact, soffit boards even come in different colors and designs. This is perfect for designing your home.

3. Practicality

If nothing else, using a soffit ceiling is practical. It provides protection for the base of your roof, shielding it from the elements, while protecting itself. Soffit ceilings usually come painted, increasing the longevity of your roof deck. This assures you that your roof won’t give in to rotting.

4. Decreased Maintenance

As previously mentioned, with soffit ceilings, moisture is less likely to develop on your roof deck or your attic. This will result in less hassle in terms of maintenance. No need to replace certain portions of your roof deck or attic to address rot. 

Wood is very vulnerable to the change in weather. It can have the tendency to move, shift, or shrink, depending on the weather. With a soffit ceiling the temperature will stay relatively consistent, preventing any distortion in its shape or size. 

Houses that don’t have a soffit ceiling will require regular changes of their wooden overhangs. Some owners will have to constantly check for lifting wood caused by the shrinking.

5. Upgraded Resale Value

Although soffits are uncommon to buyers, their effects can be explained by your real estate agents. This will increase the value of your home if you have plans on selling it. Some experienced home buyers might even take notice of the soffits without any prompts. Thus, the advantage of the house will be apparent to these types of buyers. Not to mention that its looks will definitely be an asset.

Choosing The Right Soffit

Now, which soffit is best for your home? The answer can easily be deduced as long you know what your house needs. Here are the things you can do to determine those needs:

1. Planning

There are, of course, standard dimensions you can utilize when choosing the right ceiling. You still need to decide which portion of your house needs the boards. Plan for the renovation in the first place to avoid wasting time in purchasing and removing boards that don’t fit. You can hire expert contractors to help you with this. 

2. Checking Blueprint

You must also check your house blueprint as it might not be viable for you to add soffit ceilings. 

In addition, the architectural design of your home must also be considered as not all houses look good with soffits. If your house needs some changes, plan for these before purchasing soffit boards. You might end up with different sizes when the time comes to install them. 

3. Determine the Size

Research online for different board sizes. While width and length are your most common concern, remember that the boards come in different levels of thickness. Depending on your placement, this might matter too.

Although most boards are available from 16-24 inches, it’s still best to check your local suppliers for the available materials. You can also look online for better prices.

When you’re sure your house is perfect for installing soffit ceilings, make sure your measurements are accurate. You don’t want the soffit boards ending up too short or too long. 

4. Checking Building Codes

Lastly, you need to check local building codes. There are specific limits to the use of certain materials. Depending on where you live, it might be longer or shorter. Some states like New York have building codes restricting renovations or remodeling. 

This is why before purchasing any board, double check with your city’s local building code. This will not only prevent the waste of building material. You may just have saved yourself from having to pay considerable fines as a consequence of those violations. 


Whatever choice you end up making in terms of design or material, a house that uses a soffit ceiling will definitely provide your family a better life. A well-ventilated home is the first of many advantages you gain from installing a soffit ceiling. If you plan on renovating your house, this could be a great option for you. With more educated buyers looking for homes, you won’t regret adding soffit ceilings when you decide to sell. Not to mention your house will be the talk of the neighborhood with your new soffit ceilings that you can design.

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