What Home Inspections Should Cover
Home inspections will vary depending on the type of property you are purchasing. A large historic home, for example, will require a more specialized inspection than a small condominium. Costs vary depending on size and some property may require specialized inspections or additional inspections.
The following are the basic elements that a home inspector will check. You can also use this list to help you evaluate properties you might purchase. For more information, try the virtual home inspection at the American Society of Home Inspectors. You may also like to review the NC Home Inspection Brochure presented by the NC Real Estate Commission.
A home’s skeleton impacts how the property stands up to weather, gravity, and the earth. During home inspections, the structural components, including the foundation and the framing, should be inspected.
Home inspections will also look at sidewalks, driveways, steps, windows, and doors. A home’s siding, trim, and surface drainage also are part of an exterior inspection.
- Doors and windows
- Siding (brick, stone, stucco, vinyl, wood, etc.)
- Attached porches, decks, and balconies
A well-maintained roof protects you from rain, snow, and other forces of nature. Take note of the roof’s age, conditions of flashing, roof draining systems (pooling water), buckled shingles, loose gutters and downspout, skylight, and chimneys.
Home inspections thoroughly examine the water supply and drainage systems, water heating equipment, and fuel storage systems. Drainage pumps and sump pumps also fall under this category. Poor water pressure, banging pipes, rust spots, or corrosion can indicate problems.
Safe electrical wiring is essential. Look for the condition of service entrance wires, service panels, breakers and fuses, and disconnects. Also take note of the number of outlets in each room.
Home inspections of the home’s heating system, vent system, flues, and chimneys should be done. Look for age of water heater, whether the size is adequate for the house, speed of recovery, and energy rating.
Your inspector should describe your home cooling system, its energy source, and inspect the central and through-wall cooling equipment. Consider the age and energy rating of the system.
Home inspections of the inside of the home can reveal plumbing leaks, insect damage, rot, construction defects, and other issues. An inspector should take a close look at:
- Walls, ceilings and floors
- Steps, stairways, and railings
- Counter tops and cabinets
- Garage doors and garage door systems
To prevent energy loss, check for adequate insulation and ventilation in the attic and in unfinished areas such as crawlspaces. Home inspections will look for proper, secured insulation in walls. Insulation should be appropriate for the climate. Excess moisture in the home can lead to mold and water damage.
They’re charming, but they could be dangerous if not properly installed. Inspectors should examine the system, including the vent and flue, and describe solid fuel burning appliances.
For more information, view the Questions & Answers on Home Inspections, published by the NC Real Estate Commission.
More Home Buying Tips
If you planning to buy real estate in the lake area, make sure you understand what steps are involved in real estate contract negotiation. Learn what a Home Inspections should cover and what a Home Warranty covers. Find out what the goal of a final walk-through should be and what Buyer closing costs are and about the HUD-1.
Buyer Tip Videos
Visit my YouTube Channel’s “Home Buying Tips” playlists. There are many helpful home buying videos to watch.
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Robin is a licensed as NC real estate agent. Robin works in the lake real estate market towns of Cornelius, Huntersville, Mooresville, Denver NC, Davidson and Charlotte NC. She will educate you and ensure you are taking advantage of the best market opportunities. Robin will also help you set realistic expectations. Furthermore, she will walk with you through the entire process. Home buyers can trust Robin to help them find a property of their dreams. Home sellers will receive unparalleled exposure to their listings. She will assist her clients in negotiating the best possible price. She will also do her part in keeping your transaction running smoothly! Ask her any general question about real estate in NC and around Lake Norman.
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