What to Expect
Every inspection, even of new property, will yield reportable items. It is important for you, as a prospective client, to understand the inspection goals and process. I recommend that you begin by reviewing the International Standards of Practice for Performing a General Home Inspection in detail; it won’t take long.
The inspection will include a visual, non-invasive examination of the property’s major systems including some or all of the following: Roof, Exterior, Basement, Foundation, Crawlspace & Structure, Heating, Cooling, Plumbing, Electrical, Fireplace, Attic, Insulation & Ventilation, Doors, Windows & Interior. If water and power are available, I will operate systems (air-conditioning, heating, etc. if applicable and if possible), flush commodes and run water. If doing Thermography, I will probably run water for up to five minutes in order to enhance the temperature difference between water pipes and building materials. I will not check microwaves, toasters, washing machines or other appliances not permanently attached to the property.
I will walk the grounds, common areas, if any, and, as well as possible, examine the roof (even if the client will not ultimately be financially responsible for its upkeep and repair). I will take pictures with a camera. I will use electrical test equipment. I may use a moisture meter. If the client has opted for a thermographic inspection, which I recommend, I will do an infrared scan of most of the surfaces inside the dwelling and several outside. Consistent with established industry best practices, I will not move debris, vegetation or heavy furniture. Unless other provisions are made in advance, I will not throw main electrical breakers, open or close gas supply valves, open or close the main water supply to a dwelling or in any way risk accident or injury to myself or anyone present.
In order to optimize the inspection visit, it is a good idea to prepare in advance. If at all possible, before I arrive, make sure that…
- The premises are orderly and accessible.
- Power, gas and water are turned on.
- Clutter is removed from under sinks and lavatories.
- Electrical boxes, water heating equipment etc. are accessible.
- Keys are available for access to locked areas.
- Someone (owner or knowledgeable agent) is available to answer questions.
- Children, pets, the curious and neighbors have something else to do.
- You have reviewed the Standards of Practice, Frequently Asked Questions and other descriptive pages on or linked to from this site.
During the inspection, please feel free to ask all the questions you like.
When all the data is collected and the agreed upon terms and conditions of our inspection agreement are satisfied, the client and his/her designees, if any, will receive a web link to a downloadable, printable report via email, complete with pictures.
The time required to complete the report will vary with the size and complexity of the property.