General limitations and exclusions

  1. Introduction
  2. Purpose & Scope
  3. Structural System
  4. Exterior
  5. Roof System
  6. Plumbing System
  7. Electrical System
  8. Heating System
  9. Air Conditioning Systems
  10. Interior
  11. Insulation and Ventilation
  12. Fireplaces and Solid Fuel Burning Appliances
  13. General Limitations and Exclusions
  14. Glossary of Italicized Terms


13.1 General limitations

  1. The inspector is NOT required to perform actions, or to make determinations, or to make recommendations not specifically stated in this Standard.
  2. Inspections performed using this Standard:

    1. are not technically exhaustive.

    2. are not required to identify and to report:

      1. concealed conditions, latent defects, consequential damages, and

      2. cosmetic imperfections that do not significantly affect a component’s performance of its intended function.

  3. This Standard applies to buildings with four or fewer dwelling units and their attached and detached garages and carports.

  4. This Standard shall not limit or prevent the inspector from meeting state statutes which license professional home inspection and home inspectors.

  5. Redundancy in the description of the requirements, limitations, and exclusions regarding the scope of the home inspection is provided for emphasis only.

13.2 General exclusions

  1. The inspector is NOT required to determine:

    1. the condition of systems and components that are not readily accessible.

    2. the remaining life expectancy of systems and components.

    3. the strength, adequacy, effectiveness, and efficiency of systems and components.

    4. the causes of conditions and deficiencies.

    5. methods, materials, and costs of corrections.

    6. future conditions including but not limited to failure of systems and components.

    7. the suitability of the property for specialized uses.

    8. compliance of systems and components with past and present requirements and guidelines (codes, regulations, laws, ordinances, specifications, installation and maintenance instructions, use and care guides, etc.).

    9. the market value of the property and its marketability.

    10. the advisability of purchasing the property.

    11. the presence of plants, animals, and other life forms and substances that may be hazardous or harmful to humans including, but not limited to, wood destroying organisms, molds and mold-like substances.

    12. the presence of environmental hazards including, but not limited to, allergens, toxins, carcinogens, electromagnetic radiation, noise, radioactive substances, and contaminants in building materials, soil, water, and air.

    13. the effectiveness of systems installed and methods used to control or remove suspected hazardous plants, animals, and environmental hazards.

    14. operating costs of systems and components.

    15. acoustical properties of systems and components.

    16. soil conditions relating to geotechnical or hydrologic specialties.

    17. whether items, materials, conditions and components are subject to recall, controversy, litigation, product liability, and other adverse claims and conditions.

  2. The inspector is NOT required to offer:

    1. or to perform acts or services contrary to law or to government regulations.

    2. or to perform architectural, engineering, contracting, or surveying services or to confirm or to evaluate such services performed by others.

    3. or to perform trades or professional services other than home inspection.

    4. warranties or guarantees.

  3. The inspector is NOT required to operate:

    1. systems and components that are shut down or otherwise inoperable.

    2. systems and components that do not respond to normal operating controls.

    3. shut-off valves and manual stop valves.

    4. automatic safety controls.

  4. The inspector is NOT required to enter:

    1. areas that will, in the professional judgment of the inspector, likely be dangerous to the inspector or to other persons, or to damage the property or its systems and components.

    2. under-floor crawlspaces and attics that are not readily accessible.

  5. The inspector is NOT required to inspect:

    1. underground items including, but not limited to, underground storage tanks and other underground indications of their presence, whether abandoned or active.

    2. items that are not installed.

    3. installed decorative items.

    4. items in areas that are not entered in accordance with 13.2.D.

    5. detached structures other than garages and carports.

    6. common elements and common areas in multi-unit housing, such as condominium properties and cooperative housing.

    7. every occurrence of multiple similar components.

    8. outdoor cooking appliances.

  6. The inspector is NOT required to:

    1. perform procedures or operations that will, in the professional judgment of the inspector, likely be dangerous to the inspector or to other persons, or to damage the property or its systems or components.

    2. describe or report on systems and components that are not included in this Standard and that were not inspected.

    3. move personal property, furniture, equipment, plants, soil, snow, ice, and debris.

    4. dismantle systems and components, except as explicitly required by this Standard.

    5. reset, reprogram, or otherwise adjust devices, systems, and components affected by inspection required by this Standard.

    6. ignite or extinguish fires, pilot lights, burners, and other open flames that require manual ignition.

    7. probe surfaces that would be damaged or where no deterioration is visible or presumed to exist.