THE HOME INSPECTION
As qualified house inspectors we inspect the following areas; exterior, roof, structure, electrical system, heating and cooling system, insulation, plumbing system and the interior of the house. We look at these parts of the house not as isolated areas but keeping in mind what they may tell us about the other areas in the house. For example cracks in the plaster may indicate structural problems and water damage may indicate plumbing or roofing issues. These examples are straightforward but some issues get much more complex. As professional inspectors, we are trained to look at the house as a system in order to give you the best insight as to its present condition. The following is only a brief description of what an inspection will include.
We encourage; the purchaser be present at the time of the inspection. Of course, we do not allow the purchaser to follow us in certain locations for safety reasons.
1. The Exterior:
The inspection begins at first glance. We are looking for signs of water penetration, structural distress of the building, lot topography for proper drainage, as well as proper ventilation equipment. We inspect the foundation, walls and roof, walks, patios and decks.
2. The Roof :
We will go on the roof whenever possible. Occasionally safety concerns, such as snow, ice or the condition of a roof may prevent walking on the roof. We inspect chimney structure, flashings, gutters and vents as well as soffit and fascia. The attic inspection will sometimes show signs of roof deficiencies that may not be apparent from above the roof covering.
3. The Structure:
We are looking for any serious signs of structural deficiencies throughout the house, from the foundation right up through the roof. New homes are no less vulnerable to oversights during construction than renovated dwellings.
4. The Electrical System:
We examine the electrical panel, note the type of wire and report any deficiencies observed.
5. The Heating/ Cooling System:
We evaluate the condition of the heating system. If it is an older heating appliance we sometimes recommend updating the furnace as the costs of operation may exceed the cost of a new system.
We look for signs of insulation throughout the house. Whenever possible we enter the attic/ roof area and note the type and the approximate R-value. Suggestions may be offered to improve the homes’ energy efficiency.
7. The Plumbing System:
We inspect all accessible plumbing to look for leaks, poor connections, improper support, damage, and venting issues. The water pressure as well as size and type of water entrance are also noted.
8. The Interior:
Inside the house, all of the walls and ceilings will be carefully evaluated for cracks or other problems. The doors and windows will be scrutinized for any problems with fit or function and air leakage. Basements and crawlspaces are inspected for signs of water infiltration.
At the end of the inspection, the inspector will give a verbal report of the major deficiencies seen in the house. Shortly after a carefully written report will be sent as a PDF to the buyers email address.
Every house has yearly maintenance costs attached to them. The typical average is 1-1.5% of the value of your home and a 3% repair costs at the time of purchase is common.