How a Home Inspector Can Help Homeowners

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One of the big pieces of advice people get when they buy a new home is to hire a home inspector first to see if there are any problems. Hiring a home inspector can mean the difference between getting a lemon and getting a dream home. It can save you thousands of dollars.


But that’s not the only place a home inspector can help. Hiring an inspector every five years to examine your home can help you find problems before they become too expensive. Most people don’t know how often different parts of a home require maintenance to prevent disasters from things like water damaged floors.


How often do things need to be repaired in your home? Let’s take a look at a maintenance schedule for some of the bigger items. Here are some things that require annual inspection:


  • Water drainage moves away from the home
  • Outdoor faucets and hoses
  • Shingles
  • Roof flashing
  • Attic ventilation
  • Roof leaks
  • Paint
  • Flashing around doors and windows
  • Basement floor drains
  • Operation of doors and windows
  • Pests
  • Plumbing in general
  • Septic tanks (every 2 years)
  • Water tanks


Why so much concern about water? More than anything else, water is the most damaging thing to a home. We may need water to live, but water in the wrong spot in a home will cause it to decay faster than anything else. A wet home brings mold, mildew, and pests.


The scary part is that it doesn’t take much water to start a problem. A small bit of cracked caulk can cause water to leak inside your walls. If that crack isn’t sealed then water, over time, can cause a lot of hidden damage. By the time it is discovered, there may be no way to repair it inexpensively.


However, with the help of a home inspector, you can catch these problems early. Here are some things to ask your home inspector to inspect carefully.



All foundations must be free of cracks. A cracked foundation will allow water into your basement or crawlspace. It can erode the dirt under the foundation and could damage it enough to make it uninhabitable. Make sure that there are no cracks in the bricks, around windows, or around spigots.




Every home inspector worth their salt will check the plumbing as thoroughly as possible. Leaking plumbing is a sure route to ruin. If you’re not familiar with your home’s plumbing, ask your inspector to show you where important parts of it are, like the water shut off valve or the drain pipe to your septic tank. If your inspector finds problems in your plumbing get it repaired as soon as possible.




The primary protective value of a roof is against water. So if the roof is bad, you’ve lost a major part of your home’s protection. A roof leak can hide in attic insulation for weeks or months before you see a mold spot in your ceiling. And by the time you see one, it’s usually too late for a cheap repair. Fortunately, it’s easy to detect roof problems if you can get onto your roof and know what you’re looking for. Home inspectors will be sure to take a look at your roof. It’s often the first thing they check.




While you don’t usually have to worry about electricity and water as part of a normal home inspection, a bad electrical circuit can cause a fire. That’s the other great danger for a home and electrical fires are no joke. If you have enough water damage that it might compromise your home’s electricity, you should call a water damage restoration specialist.


Home inspectors also serve another useful function. They can inspect a contractor’s repairs to ensure they are up to code. This can serve as evidence if you feel they didn’t do a good job. Also, if you are fighting for home repair payments from your insurance company, the documentation from a home inspector before and after the repair can only help your cause.


If you’re about to spend a bunch of money on home repairs, why not spring for a little extra to get a home inspector first? You might find a problem you missed, and you’ll be able to tell your contractors exactly where they need to focus their efforts.


Date : 8/22/2017