Well.... The first thing we see here is that someone in the past was required to reinforce the roof. On top of that there is a combination of something called 'arborite', a synthetic insulator (like 1/8" gray foam chunks), mixed with large cedar shavings.
There is some miscellaneous garbage lying about but other then that it's just about as dusty, and spacious (that's a joke), as any other attic. The plethora of small particulate matter as insulation however makes me hesitant to replace any ceiling material. That's a real problem because the ceilings are in terrible shape. The walls really aren't in to good of shape but at least their not bowing under the weight of the insulation behind them. I would like to have the insulation just sucked up (vacuumed) and replaced with 'fiberglass' but I'm not going to find that kind of service in rural nowhere. I'm just going to have to work with this the way it is.
Crawling around in this is a mess. Finding joists, underneath the insulation, is a dirty, dusty, job. The entire wiring in the house needed to be replaced. Mostly to introduce ground, everywhere. Apparently this house is older then anyone thought. Probably mid to late 1940's. Before building codes were enforced in rural nowhere.
So... We had a lot of work ahead of us to bring this house up to code. We don't really care about the code for a rental property but if we have to dump this property, quickly, we can not afford to be held up by trivial inspection problems.
Thus: Because we were already there (in the walls, so to speak) we made sure that everything was 'better then code'.