5 Home Inspection Tips For Open House Visits

Fortunately, prospective homebuyers do not have to be professional home inspectors to be able to identify certain problems in a home.

Regardless of whether you are the “handy” type or more of the “book” type, you will be able to spot certain problematic areas with a little bit of guidance. Thus, if you are going through the home purchasing process and you are viewing different homes, keep yours eyes open for some of the following.

NOTE: to better prepare you before heading to your next open house, go on the Internet to look up images regarding some of the problems noted below (e.g. water damaged ceiling, termite damage, flooded basement, mold, cracked foundation).

1) Discolored Walls and/or Ceilings

Discoloration on walls and/or ceilings is usually indicative of water damage or mold. Neither one is good for the home. If you see this, make a note of it.

Water damage could result from leaky pipes, broken pipes, improperly installed window flashing, or even a leaky roof. Each of these can be quite expensive to repair. Where there is excessive moisture, there is a chance that mold will grow. This is especially concerning since mold exposure is linked to certain health concerns. Mold can also cause structural damage to any property it inhabits.

2) Wood Damage

If there are hardwood floors in the house be sure to look for any signs of damage. More specifically, look for lines that resemble trails of some sort. This can be indicative of damage caused by termites or other wood-destroying insects.

In addition, if you can observe wooden beams in the basement, be sure to have a close look for any impairments. Damaged wooden beams can also be attributed to a wood-destroying insect.

3) Dampness in Basement

If the home you are viewing has a basement, look for any signs of excessive moisture while you are down there. Such dampness can mean that the basement floods or that there is water seepage during rainstorms. It can also lead to the growth of mold, which thrives in dark and moist environments.

4) Drafty Windows

While you are in the house, run your hands across some of the windows to feel for any air getting through. On a hot summer day this will be more difficult, not impossible to do, but try it anyway.

Windows can become a much bigger headache than most people think. Repairing windows can be rather expensive, depending on the type and quality you’re seeking. This does not necessarily mean you will have to repair the windows; there are some inexpensive remedies that work well. But, having this knowledge prior to making your purchase permits you to take it into consideration when deciding whether or not to place a bid.

5) Cracked Foundation

At some point before you leave the house, be sure to look around the exterior of the property for signs of damage to the outer structure or foundation. Sometimes there will literally be a large crack going across a section of the home’s foundation. Although this doesn’t always indicate a serious problem with the house, it is worth knowing about and looking into.

Closing

These are just a handful of home inspection tips that you should keep in mind when you are viewing different prospective houses. The benefit is that you can identify some problems on your own and possibly eliminate certain houses from your list that you weren’t too sure of in the first place.

Once you have found a home that you feel comfortable with, have a professional home inspector conduct a thorough inspection. This will ensure that you have all of the information you need regarding the actual condition of the home to make your final purchasing decision.

Best of luck!

Home Inspection Tip – Move Your Clutter!

When any self respecting housewife invites company for dinner, she cleans the house to impress her guests. If you’re selling your home and are having it inspected, as you should, you’ll need to do some house cleaning, too. That’s not so you can impress your home inspector, but so he can do his job.

Many times home inspectors can’t fully do what they’re supposed to do because certain areas of the home are inaccessible, due to clutter. When it’s time for your home inspection, you want to get your money’s worth. You don’t want the report to say, “Inspection limited due to the excess possessions blocking access and view.”

This isn’t about being a neat freak. The American Society of Home Inspectors ASHI┬«, Standards of Professional Practice, says inspectors are not to report on components or systems which are not observed. Your inspector isn’t required to disturb insulation or move personal items out of the way. If you’ve got furniture or plants in places your inspector needs to see, like the doorway to a utility closet, you’ll have to move that stuff. Clear off any snow and ice if necessary as well.

What if the water heater, electrical panels, or attic are places your home inspector can’t get to? Those are areas he must check if your home is to be inspected properly, and if you’re going to get the report you need. The bottom line: Don’t let junk ruin your home inspection.

In some homes water heaters are found in utility closets or garages. If the water heater is surrounded by clutter, your inspector can’t tell if there are possible problems, such as a fire hazard. If an electrical panel has been improperly installed, but is hidden from view, your inspector won’t know that, and neither will you. What if that panel causes a fire for the next home owner?

Walk through your home before your home inspection is to take place and make sure all doors and passageways are accessible. Move stored items out of the way or elsewhere altogether. If the home being sold is vacant make sure that the power, water and gas remain on so that all systems are operable and can be inspected. If items on the report can’t be inspected, you as the seller may be asked to have the home inspected again after areas in question have been cleared out. Similarly, if you’re the buyer, you can ask for another inspection. Another option is to request that the seller pay for a warranty if a certain component is not inspected.

Granted, if a home to be inspected is being lived in, there will be personal possessions throughout the house. Some areas will be less accessible as a result. If you’re the seller, make sure things can be moved out of your inspector’s way.

Show some common courtesy and make sure key areas around your property can be seen by your home inspector. You may not be trying to impress him at a dinner party, but you’ll make his job easier, and you’ll get a more complete report. That, after all, is what you’re paying for.

Typical Problem Areas Discovered in Home Inspection

You’ll find so many prevalent conditions that a home inspection can reveal and many of these may well amaze unsuspecting potential buyers. There are many conditions that can easily impact the actual habitability of a property as well as its basic safety. Though occasionally, an assessment isn’t necessary yet it must be performed at any rate. It becomes an exceptional means to get a reassurance in your home. The inspector doesn’t have desire regardless if the property passes the assessment or not. They may be basically searching at the various locations of the property to determine if it’s a secure house to reside in.

Initially, they are going to check out the rooftop. It’s the main reason with regards to creating massive difficulties. Great deals of rooftops tend to gravel above existing tiles. This might lure water and result in the gravels to weaken or at times it might be moving. The rooftop trusses or rafter may become weakened and begin to give up in a few spots.

One more prevalent problem is the cornerstone given that a number of locations can produce breaks. There could be watermarks found near it and it could be a good indication of an issue. These complications could be a common problem uncovered by the home inspection. Nevertheless, they are substantial and may be fairly expensive to fix.

There’s yet another problem that isn’t commonly dealt with right up until it stops operating could be the cooling as well as the heating system. Once the system is outdated, it must be changed even before it gives up. It is difficult to get pieces for earlier systems and this indicates shouldering more cash to restore the old system.

The home inspection will also include examining the electrical wiring of the house. Houses that have been created prior to 1970s don’t have grounded electric outlet. It doesn’t instantly power down whenever anything goes completely wrong in the wiring. The doors and windows may also be examined. Whenever doorways don’t shut appropriately, it may be because of the walls.

The pipes are also checked and even more frequently, a leak may very well be uncovered. The owner may not be aware of the leak particularly if it’s merely a tiny one. Nevertheless, small leak are capable of causing problems that are more severe and before very long, the whole flooring will have to be changed or fixed.

Scheduled servicing can repair particular common problems. It can be as easy as a damaged screen, regardless of how tiny. This has to be repaired the moment it is discovered. It may ruin the probability of marketing your property. The front yard should not be developing chips and it must be precisely the same with the walkway close to your entrance.

The home inspection will find out if you can find any signs of hazards. It is a part of their regular guideline. Pest damage is yet another typical condition in properties. It will involve comprehensive examination of the complete spots from the kid’s bedroom sets right down to the living room. The home inspection may reveal a number of small complications that you could cope with, work out and still purchase the home. On the other hand, when the assessment declares significant problems, it’s time to postpone the investment given that you will probably waste your money on repairs on the new home than restoring your previous one.