Our Inspection process
We offer a detailed and comprehensive home inspection service that starts from the minute you choose our services. We immediately go to task doing our homework on your prospective new home with a preinspection researching the history, details and orientation of the home.
When we arrive at the property we start with the roof and evaluate not only the roof surface, but also the chimney, ventilation system, electrical service entrance, plumbing stack, and any other systems or components located on the roof.
Our next step is to inspect the exterior of the home. From the foundation up we inspect the exterior following a path to the right circling the house, we then reverse direction making a second pass useing a macro and micro approach to look at both the big picture and the smaller details.
We then move inside the home and starting in the kitchen we make an intial sweep looking for any aparent defects while making a mental image of the home allowing us to tailor the inspection so that we can give the home the attention it deserves. While inside, we address such things as the structure, heating and cooling systems, electrical and plumbing systems, interior finishes, insulation and ventilation and most importlantly any questions or concerns you might have.
Our evaluation is then communicated through a detailed inspection report, using the most comperhensive and up to date inspection software avaliable. Our inspection will include descriptions of all the systems in the home, as well as any recommended improvements. This will help you prioritize any repairs or upgrades and develop a blueprint for the future allowing you to really "Know Your Home..."
Structures 101 – What You Should Know About The “Bones”
"This house isn't going anywhere." Or is it!?
Serious structural problems in houses are not very common, but when they occur they are never cheap to fix. Some can’t be fixed at all. This report won’t turn you into a home inspector, but it will give you some of the common indicators.
Uneven floors are typical, particularly in older homes. Here is a trick to help distinguish between a typical home with character and a structural problem. It’s not unusual for an older home to have the floor sag in the middle. On the other hand, if the floor slopes toward an outside wall, there is a good chance that the house has a significant structural problem.
While no house is perfect, this is one area where you should be very careful. Take a look at the house from across the street. If the house appears to be leaning one way or the other, there may be a structural problem. It may help to line up a front corner of the house with the back corner of an adjacent house just for reference. The corners should be parallel. Stepping back from the house to take a look is always a good idea. It is easy to miss something major by standing too close to it! If there is a lean that is detectable by eye, don’t take any chances. Get it checked out.
Horizontal Foundation Cracks are Bad
It is not uncommon to find cracks in the foundation. This goes for new houses as well as old ones. While there is a great deal of engineering that goes into “reading” these cracks, there is one rule that you should never forget. “Horizontal cracks are a problem”. Of course not all vertical cracks are acceptable, but they are generally not as serious as a horizontal crack.
Shrinkage cracks in a new house: Most new foundations will develop small vertical cracks. These cracks are a result of the concrete shrinking as it cures. These cracks are about 1 /8 inch wide or less. They don’t affect the structure. The only concern is leakage. If you see small cracks in a new foundation, don’t panic. In fact, in a new home, some builders will pre-crack the foundation and fill the crack with flexible material.
Few things are more misunderstood than plaster cracks on the inside of the house.
The following crack types are not generally related to structural movement -
- a small crack (less than 1/4 inch) that follows the corner of the room where two walls meet
- small cracks that extend up from the upper corner of a door opening
The following cracks may be related to structural movement –
- large cracks (larger than 1/4 inch in width)
- cracks that run diagonally across the wall
- cracks on the interior finish that are in the same vicinity as cracks on the exterior of the house.