Why? 

 

WHY YOU SHOULD HAVE A HOME INSPECTION...

 

 

BUYERS:   

We encourage our clients to attend the entire home inspection, from beginning to end. A typical home inspection will take 2-4 hours to conduct, depending on the size and condition of the home, and how many questions our clients have (we love questions). For first time home buyers, our home inspections provide an excellent education on home ownership and home maintenance. For the more experienced buyer, we’ll focus more on major issues and general building science. We take digital photos throughout the inspection and include them in our inspection report, along with several helpful diagrams and illustrations and links to more information on our web site. Following the inspection, our reports emailed to you and available for download in Adobe Acrobat format.

 

Know what to expect by letting me education you about the conditions of your future home.  

 

Our inspectors are professionals with practical experience and technical 

knowledge to assess the condition of your "new" home purchase.

 

Our goal is to provide you with an unbiased opinion of the visible and accessible areas

of the house at the time of the inspection.

 

SELLERS:

 

Increase your home's marketability with an impartial pre-listing inspection report.

 

Identify and correct problems early by making the necessary repairs or even upgrades prior to listing your home. 

 

Set a realistic selling price for your home based on the information from the inspection

report.

 

Estimate last minute delays because the price has negotiated and disclosure has been made. 

 

A seller’s inspection is the equivalent of a buyers inspection, but of course the client is the person selling the home, not the person buying it. Sellers may choose to make the inspection report available for potential buyers to see, or they may keep it private. In either case, this is a fantastic way for sellers to learn exactly what will be found at their home when their buyers have an inspection performed, and will give them a chance to repair any problems.

 

If the seller chooses to make the inspection report a public document, this can make the home a more attractive property for potential buyers by giving them better peace of mind about a property before even writing an offer on it. Besides added peace of mind for buyers, having a sellers inspection will make the negotiation process much easier for all parties involved. Here are two potential scenarios:

 

No seller’s inspection – A buyer writes an offer on a home, the offer is accepted, and the purchase is contingent upon an inspection. The inspection is performed three days later, and several issues are identified. Assuming the buyers still want the house after discovering all these things they didn’t know about the home, they now ask the seller to fix the items. Several things can happen at this point – the seller might offer to discount the price of the home, rush to do the repairs, or even refuse to do anything, which might kill the deal. None of these options are ideal for the seller, and negotiations will need to take place.

 

Seller has home inspected before listing – The inspector identifies several issues with the home, and the seller takes their leisurely time in getting the items corrected or repaired. They confidently list their home, and look forward to the buyer’s home inspection, knowing that nothing is going to come up that they didn’t already know about. If there are items that the seller decides not to fix, they might just list those items on a disclosure form, so any potential buyer knows that this is what they are buying, and there are no negotiations later on in the buying process.

 

Sellers inspections are becoming more and more popular, especially in today’s market where there is such a high inventory of homes for sale. Many real estate agents that work with us have us inspect every house they list for sale, because it makes the selling process go so much smoother for all parties involved.

 

One last thing – make sure you hire an excellent home inspector. A home inspector who misses or glosses over problems can do more harm than good.

 

Our Goals and Personal Touch! 

 

We stress the utmost professionalism and ethical conduct, both of which are in conjunction with NJ and ASHI Standards of Practice. I am committed to a personal service, problem solving and your personal satisfaction.  We have no vested interest in performing repairs or pest control treatment of any kind.  Along with my 20 years experience building large customs homes, I have received extensive training in various programs (over 600 hours) in addition to NJ State authorized and mandated courses.  I am also required have completed at least 20 additional hours in continuing educational courses each year.  

We strongly encourage you to attend the inspection and follow me as I inspect your new home.  See and feel what I experience as I go All Through the House! 

 

 

What’s included in our inspections:

 

All of our home inspectors are proud members of ASHI, the American Society of Home Inspectors. As such, we abide by the ASHI Code of Ethics, as well as the ASHI Standards of Practice, which sets forth the minimum requirements for a home inspection. The list below incorporates the ASHI Standards of Practice, but also incorporates part of the Structure Tech list of Best Practices for a home inspection. This list is written in the same order as our inspection reports. We think this is a pretty boring list, but we occasionally get asked about some of these specific items, so here are the items included in our inspection of single family homes and townhomes:

 

Roof Covering

 

  • We walk roofs to inspect them. Some common-sense exceptions would be unsafe roofs, roofs not accessible rain slick and snow covered, etc.

  • Gutters and roof drainage systems. We’re big proponents of gutters.

  • Flashing. Lack of kickout flashing is also typically reported.

  • Skylights, roof caps, roof vents, plumbing vents, and other roof penetrations are inspected.

 

Chimney, Fireplaces

 

  • Chimney crowns

  • Chimney walls

  • Chimney flashing

  • Fuel-burning fireplaces, stoves, and fireplace inserts. This usually means wood burning fireplaces or gas fireplaces.

  • Fuel-burning accessories installed in fireplaces, such as gas logs

 

 

Exterior

 

  • Wall coverings (aka ‘siding’)

  • Windows

  • Doors

  • Decks

  • Balconies

  • Stoops

  • Steps

  • Porches

  • Guards (aka ‘guardrails’)

  • Drainage and grading that is likely to affect the building

  • Retaining walls

  • Vegetation that is likely to affect the building

  • Walkways

  • Patios

  • Driveways

  • Foundation walls

  • Vent terminals and air intakes

  • Exterior faucets "spigots"

 

Basement / Foundation / Structure

 

  • Foundation walls

  • Basement floor

  • Crawl spaces

  • Sump Systems, including the sump basket, sump pump, sump cover, and extension piping.

  • Floor structure (posts, beams, joists, etc.)

  • Basement insulation

  • Signs of basement moisture / water intrusion are always a concern for buyers, and we always inspect for this. We use Protimeter Surveymaster moisture meters to check for elevated moisture levels when they’re suspected.

 

Electrical

 

  • Exterior electrical components, including the service drop, service entrance conductors, cables, and raceways.

  • The main panel and any subpanels. We remove panel covers to inspect the wiring inside. For the record, this is not something that sets us apart from our competition; every ASHI inspector in Minnesota should do this as standard practice, and any home inspector who claims to follow ASHI’s Standards Of Practice should do this.

  • Service grounding

  • Interior electrical components, including the majority of outlets, switches, and lights.

  • Ground fault circuit interrupters

  • Arc fault circuit interrupters

  • Smoke and CO alarms are recommended when not present

 

Plumbing

 

  • Drain, waste, and vent pipes

  • Water distribution pipes

  • The visible portion of the water main, which is the water supply pipe that brings water into the home

  • Water heaters

  • Water heater vents. We perform worst-case scenario draft testing at natural draft water heaters.

  • Clothes washers and dryers

  • Floor drains

  • Sinks

  • Toilets

  • Tubs

  • Showers – tiled showers are flood tested. We use infrared cameras to check below tiled showers, whether an infrared inspection is included or not.

  • Gas lines. We have electronic gas leak detectors to locate gas leaks, but gas leaks are only reported by using a liquid gas detection solution. This prevents reporting any false gas leaks. More info on where we typically find gas leaks here: where to look for gas leaks.

  • We report the locations of the main gas and water valves, and typically point these out during the inspection.

 

Heating

 

  • Installed heating equipment such as furnaces, boilers, and space heaters. Carbon monoxide testing of heating plants is standard for us.

  • Furnace filters are inspected and clients are shown how to change the filter.

  • Ductwork

  • Registers are all checked for operation with an infrared camera, whether an infrared inspection is included or not.

  • Vent connector and vent

 

Cooling

 

  • Central and permanently installed cooling equipment

  • Temperature difference testing is used to determine if cooling equipment is operational

  • Condensate drainage systems

 

Interior

 

  • Ceilings

  • Walls

  • Floors

  • Doors

  • Windows

  • Skylights

  • Stairs, handrails, and guards

  • Counters and cabinets

  • Vent fans

  • Kitchen appliances

 

Attic

 

  • We access nearly every attic to inspect them. If we can walk or crawl through the attic without trampling the insulation, we’ll do so to inspect the attic.

  • Framing and sheathing

  • Exhaust fans and ducts

  • Insulation

  • Ventilation

  • Locating attic air leaks typically requires some minor disturbing of insulation. We’ll disturb a little insulation to look when attic air leaks are suspected.

 

Garage

 

  •  

    All of the other stuff that most folks would probably expect; doors, stairs, walls, floor, electrical, etc.

  • Garage door openers

  • Overhead doors

  •