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The Most Common Issues Found on a Home Inspection.

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The Most Common Issues Found on a Home Inspection

No two home inspections are the same. Every single house is different and has its own story to tell. It is the home inspector’s job to interpret and tell that story by doing a thorough visual investigation of the house.  Often people hire the home inspector to perform this inspection at the time of purchase. Even though every house is different, home inspectors come across many of the same problems after performing many inspections over time. After being in business for over 25 years, there are a few that are a constant reoccurrence. So I created a list of The Most Common Issues Found on a Home Inspection. The list below does not imply that your house will or will not have these problems.  It’s just a list off the top of an old home inspector’s head. So, here we go.

The Most Common Issues Found on a Home Inspection

  1. Dirty air filters which lead to clogged condensation lines, overflow pans filled with water, and an HVAC system that is not working as efficiently as it should. I could write a whole article on how the dirty filter leads to all this but for brevity just keep those filters changed.
  2. Loose strike plates and hinges. Fortunately, these are typically easy fixes that just need a screw or multiple screws tightened.  Sometimes if it is stripped You might need a larger screw.
  3. Shrinking insulation on the Freon gas line. The Freon gas line is the bigger line that is cold when the AC is running.  Since the gas line is cold while running condensation forms on these.  Over time this pipe insulation shrinks or deteriorates and needs replacement.
  4. No antiphon device on water spigot to prevent water contamination. These are relatively inexpensive and screw right on.
  5. Anti-tipping brackets on the oven are missing. Ovens should have these brackets installed to prevent ovens from flipping over
  6. Faucets continuous drip/and or stopper not working in sinks and tubs. Usually not too bad to fix.  It usually involves replacing some worn-out valves
  7. Tubs and Sinks need Caulking. Caulking wears out over time.
  8. Caulking needed around doors and windows. Caulking wears out here too but even faster.  If the caulking fails here moisture can get in behind the wood and cause damage/ aka softwood.
  9. Poor drainage and lack of splash blocks or downspout diverters. Always ask yourself where does the water go when it rains?  Look for signs of where it goes but you want it to travel away from the house and the foundation.
  10. Damaged plumbing boots. There are rubber plumbing boots that make the transition from roof shingle to the plumbing vent pipe.  This rubber eventually deteriorates and crumbles and needs to be replaced
  11. Cracked apex shingle. I cannot tell how many of these I have seen.  Let us just say a bunch.  When that apex shingle must make a sharp angle, it tends to crack over time.
  12. Weathered Deck and/or wood debris under the deck. It’s important to keep the wood decks in good shape through periodic maintenance.  It’s also important to keep non treated wood such as firewood out from under the deck as this attracts termites.
The Most Common Things Found on a Home Inspection?

My list is by no means an exhaustive list nor is it the list of the most expensive or dangerous things found on home inspections, just the most common issues found on a home inspection off the top of an old home inspector’s head.  To prepare your sellers for an inspection download our Seller’s Checklist for FREE!  To view one of our reports to get a better idea of what inspectors are looking for during an inspection download a sample home inspection report.

Homebuyers Checklist

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How do you choose which house to buy?

You create a homebuyer’s checklist. In my last two home purchases, I made a matrix or checklist so that I could objectively compare the houses based on what was important to me.  So this looks like a spreadsheet to compare.  The houses are down one side of the spreadsheet and the things that are important to you are down the other side of the spreadsheet.  There is a caveat though.  You need to weigh the importance from 1-10 on how important that feature is to you. Let’s say schools are the most important to you.  You would give schools a weighted score of 10.  Let’s say you want a downstairs master but it’s no deal killer if it doesn’t.  You give it a weighted score of 5.

Home_Inspection_Carolina_Matrix

Let’s get started on your homebuyers checklist. First, make a list of what’s important to you.  Some examples are schools and master bedroom like we already mentioned.  Others include neighborhood, amenities, and closeness to work.  Others include modern bathrooms and a kitchen.  You may not want to give something like baths and kitchens a 10 because it is something you can change.  You can’t change neighborhoods or schools. Other things to consider include the absence or presence of a garage or basement.  You may also want to consider square footage and lot size.  There are many things you look for in a house.  The Tour list should be unique to you.  The thing to remember though is that some are more important than others.  It is very unlikely you are going to find a house that has every single thing you want that falls within your budget.  Since you will have to compromise on something it’s a good idea to weigh the things you want.

Before we make our homebuyers checklist let’s talk about the condition of the house. At the very least this should be one of your weighted items.  For finding the condition we recommend a home inspection and a Radon Inspection by a company like Home Inspection Carolina.  They also provide a free home inspection checklist.  Some people prefer new homes over existing homes for this very reason.  A new home will have a brand-new roof, furnace, and water heater.  Everything should be under warranty with a new home. You may ask well then why ever buy an existing home?   Why not just always buy a new home?   Well, there is a tradeoff.  Although a new how the home may be less maintenance it might not appreciate as quickly as a preexisting home.  After all, why would someone pay more for your home a year later if they can buy a brand new one just down the street?  Also, it might be hard to get mature trees in a brand-new neighborhood.  Also, some preexisting homes may be closer to work.  Whether you buy a new or preexisting home in an area like Charlotte NC we recommend having a home inspection by a company like Home Inspection Carolina.

Ok, you now have your house down one side of your spreadsheet and the weighted features down the other side.  Now you want to go through each feature and rate each house from 1-10 on that feature and then multiply it by its weighted amount.  If you rated schools a 10 and you gave the schools for house “A” a 9 you would put 90 in that box.  If you rated house “B” a 7 you would put a 70 in that box.  I house “A” scored a 6 on bathrooms and you weighted it and 8 the score would be 48.  If house “B” scored a 10 on bathrooms and you weighted it an 8.  It would get an 80.  In the end, you will add up all the weighted scores to see what each house scored.  This is how I objectively compared houses I was thinking of purchasing.  I hope this might help you as well.

Do’s and Don’ts When Hiring a Home Inspector

Choosing the right home inspector for you!
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Choosing a home inspector is one of the most important parts of purchasing a home. You want the home inspector to work for you and protect your investment. Your home is one of the largest investments you will ever make, and a hidden surprise can be costly after purchasing your new home.

So, How do you choose a home inspector?

One of the 1st things to do is research your home inspector, check their online reviews. If an inspector does a lot of business, Google will have a rating on them and their business. You can review what experiences other people have had and how they respond to client’s concerns. But don’t stop there. Visit the inspector’s website and check their credentials. See if the inspector has additional education and certifications. What certifications do they have that might help educate you with the buying process, Radon Testing Certification, Mold Certification, Infrared Certifications, etc.

Call the home inspector and ask questions. Get a vibe for their personality and make sure it clicks with yours. See how they respond to your questions. Do they explain things in a way you can easily understand, and are they taking the time to make sure you do understand? Choosing a home inspector, you feel comfortable speaking with, and trust is an invaluable part of the process.  Remember, a home inspector’s only job is to protect you!

If you are a 1st time home buyer, make sure they are willing to take the time to explain the home and how it works. For questions to ask a home inspector for a first-time buyer, please check out our blog on First Time home buyers The Ten questions to ask a home inspector.

Finally, once you have selected your home inspector, contact your realtor.  Ask them if they are familiar with the home inspector you have chosen. Have they ever worked with them during a transaction and if they are aware of their reputation.

Choosing the right home inspector for you is an essential part of the process. Make sure you do your research and remember, a home inspector’s only job is to protect you!

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Please enjoy our video on the “Do’s and Don’ts when hiring a home inspector”.

If you have any questions or we might be able to help in any way please don’t hesitate to contact us a customersupport@hicarolina.com or call us at 704-542-6575.

Home Inspection Carolina, services – Charlotte NC – Raleigh NC – Asheville NC

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