Home inspections can give buyers a better understanding of the condition of the property they plan to buy. In this article I will discuss four types of home inspections and what they cover.
During a standard home inspection a licensed inspector should examine the exterior of the house for damage and rot, the roof for leaks or holes, the overall structure of the house, the garage, the attic, the basement for possible water damage, the crawl space under the house (if the house is built on a crawl space), the foundation of the house for cracks and other damage, plumbing, electrical work, heating and air conditioning, and the fireplace.
Some home inspectors also look to see if the landscaping beds around the house divert water away from the home, to see if the driveway has cracks that need to be sealed, to check the overall condition of windows, to check if smoke alarms work, and even to see if the dryer vent needs to be cleaned.
Another type of home inspection is a termite inspection. These inspections are especially important in warmer areas like Charleston, SC, where it does not get cold enough in the winter to kill termites. Termite inspectors look for insects (like termites) and other organisms (like fungus) that can destroy wood. These inspections also inform the buyer about what aspects of the home are conducive to these organisms.
For an asbestos inspection, a sample is sent off for lab analysis to determine if asbestos is present. If asbestos is detected, the buyer should hire a professional to remove the contaminated fibers.
Radon inspections detect and measure the levels of a potentially dangerous gas called radon. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), more than 20,000 people die every year from lung cancer that is caused by radon gas. If a radon inspection shows levels of radon that are unsafe according to the EPA, then you can hire a professional to fix the problem.
Although there many different kinds of home inspections, these four are some of the most commonly performed. The termite inspection is the only inspection that is usually required by the mortgage company before closing on your new home. However, the standard home inspection is highly recommended. If you would like to talk with us about home inspections, please call or email us.