Sometimes having a home inspector come to your home can be a little scary. This is mostly because many people do not know what exactly a home inspector is looking for. In this piece, we will explain to you the most important aspects of your home inspectors looks at so you are not left wondering what is going on.
The foundation is the most important factor a homeowner should consider when purchasing a home. That is right, foundation not location. A bad foundation is very expensive and difficult to repair. Here are some questions that are important to consider.
- Have there been any repairs to the foundation?
- Is there a foundation membrane?
- Does the grade slope away from the foundation?
- Are there cracks between the mortar joints or on the poured foundation?
There are many factors that may indicate foundation movement or signs of water infiltration.
Roof, Shingles, Sheathing
The second most important part of your home is the roofing system. The shingles that cover your roof should be in good shape and the roofline should not sag. The sheathing under the shingles should not be damp or show many penetrations. Flashings are also important. Flashings are what makes up the aluminum protection running along your chimney, skylights, and the valleys of your roof.
Although number three on the list, the electrical system is just as important as the foundation and roof. It is a plus if the electrical system has been updated with well insulated copper wiring. Aluminum wiring must be properly installed and maintained and knob and tube wiring should be identified. Grounded outlets, GFCI (ground fault circuit interrupters) located near water sources or outside are also important issues to note.
Water Run Off
Many homeowners are concerned with water damage and how to prevent it. The best way to prevent water damage is to direct water away from your home. Although a simple concept, it is a frequent deficiency noted by home inspectors. Many times, gutters or downspouts are seen directing water directly down the side of the foundation. The grading of your lot also plays a significant role in water travel. The only way to fix grading problems is to introduce a water resistant membrane to the foundation and fix the grading. These are very costly and time consuming.
Heating and Cooling
It is important to make sure both the heating and cooling systems are working efficiently and safely. Units should be clean and rust free and have a clean filter. A yearly inspection and service by a technician is a great way to make sure your heating and cooling system stay up to standards. Finally, CO2 detectors should be located on all floors.