Before Inspections

Frequently asked questions for buyers of properties before their inspections take place.

Buying a home – different foundation types

Different foundation types have different maintenance considerations.  Foundation systems of all types depend on the integrity of the supporting soil to prevent settling over the long-term.  In our geographical area clay is the predominant supporting soil type.  Clay is more susceptible to expanding and settling...

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Buying a Modular Home

What is a Modular home (and what it isn’t) Modular homes have components that are partially built off-site in a factory which are then assembled and finished on site.  Modular homes have standard foundation systems and otherwise are just like site-built homes.  Modular homes are...

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Buying an On-frame Manufactured Home

What is an On-frame Manufactured home? Commonly referred to as ‘double-wide’s these homes still have the steel frame or chassis in place that was used to transport the home.  Manufactured homes are distinct from modular homes which are discussed in another article.  On-frame manufactured homes...

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What is included in a Septic Inspection?

The septic inspection is the most challenging and physically demanding of all real estate inspections–it’s no wonder that professionals in our industry joke that it’s a ‘crappy’ job.  A good inspector should have a sharp eye, a strong back, and a robust stomach.  Conventional gravity-fed...

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About Commercial Property Inspections

Why Home Inspectors are the best Commercial Property Inspectors There isn’t a state licensing program for Commercial Property Inspectors.  The best resource for Commercial Property Inspections is a State Licensed Home Inspector that is insured to perform Commercial Inspections and has the relevant experience and...

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Additional Water Testing

Additional Water Testing – Does the water test cover everything? The full scan water test that we offer tests for a panel of contaminants that are commonly found in our area.  In some cases buyers/homeowners may be concerned with less common contaminants such as radioactive...

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Buying a 15-25 year old home – Things to consider

Homes built within the last 25 years look similar to new homes today with modern electrical/plumbing and similar construction techniques and building codes.  In our area where there are many historic homes, a 25 year old house is still considered ‘newer’. On the other hand,...

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Buying a House 15 years or newer

A home inspector will never know what they will find in homes of any age but the items below are the most common talking points for homes 15 years or newer.  This abbreviated list of questions can in no way replace the need for a...

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Buying New Construction Homes – Tips from a Home Inspector

Do I need a Home Inspection for a New Construction Home? The first year after construction is the best time to negotiate for repairs because typically the house is still under the 1 year Builder Warranty.  When homebuyers waive the inspection process during new construction...

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What’s Included In An Inspection?

What is inspected in a Home Inspection? Structural components Exterior Roofing Plumbing Electrical HVAC Interiors Insulation & Ventilation Built-in Appliances   Can I view a sample report? You can find sample reports here which will give you a good idea of what an inspection report may...

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Should I Order A Mold Test?

Mold Testing Recommendations Is Mold Testing recommended for families or individuals with environmental or mold sensitivities? Yes.  Newer homes with very dry basements and crawl spaces (or with excellent dehumidification or closed crawl spaces) may not need additional testing- your home inspector can be asked for...

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When should I order a Well Inspection? What is included?

Should I order a well inspection? Well inspections are recommended for all homes with well water (or Springs if there is a pressure system equipment present). Well inspections are separate from water testing (both are highly recommended).  Water testing evaluates the quality of water while the well inspection...

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When should I order water testing?

Homes with Well Water:  Full scan water testing is recommended for all homes with well water (if the seller cannot provide a recent water test result within one year). The Premium Full Scan water test includes Total Coliform, E. Coli, Nitrite, Nitrate, Lead, pH, Total Dissolved...

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Should I Order A Radon Test?

Yes, Radon testing is recommended for all houses in all areas of Western North Carolina regardless of foundation type.  Homes on slabs and basements tend to have higher radon test results than crawl spaces but homes with all foundation types can test high for radon....

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FHA and VA Loan Requirements for Inspections and Testing

What are typical FHA and VA requirements for inspections & testing? Below are the most common FHA/VA loan requirements- only the wood destroying insect inspection applies to all homes.   Ask your lender for more information: All homes and detached buildings Wood Destroying Insect Inspections  FHA/VA...

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Signs of Possible Air Quality Issues

Indicators of air quality issues- when should I suspect an issue? Smell Our noses are a great tool– a musty smell can indicate an air quality issue- especially at basements and lower level living areas. Visible Signs in Crawl Spaces and Unfinished Basements Stringy insulation,...

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Are Oil Tanks included in a Home Inspection Report?

Are Oil Tanks included in a Home Inspection Report? Oil tanks are beyond the scope of a home inspection.  If evidence of an oil tank happens to be observed during our home inspection an informational item will be present in the report however we do...

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HVAC Evaluations

Our HVAC evaluations are performed by a 3rd party (our service partners All About Heat & Air)- you will be provided with a PDF document with pictures and an estimate for repairs.  The inspection of an HVAC system by a home inspector is limited while...

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Finding Appointment Information

You can find your appointment information in your appointment confirmation email and subsequent reminder emails. Search your inbox for Builder Buddy or Spectora (Spectora is our inspection software).  You will also see prompts on your Spectora dashboard. If you recently filled out our online form...

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What is Mold Testing?

Air Samples Mold Testing is typically an air quality test.  In most cases we take 3 samples: one sample is taken from outside (the control sample), another sample is taken from the lowest living area or where moisture issues are suspected, and another sample is...

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How should radon be tested or monitored? Can I test myself?

What are the acceptable ways to test for radon? According to the EPA there are only two acceptable ways to test for radon during a real estate transaction: A 48 hour test with a certified and calibrated radon monitor  (these are very expensive and must...

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How do I pay?

You will receive an email invoice with a ‘pay now’ button.  Search your inbox for emails from Spectora or Builder Buddy as an email may have already been delivered.  Follow the instructions on the email to pay by credit or debit card.  We do not...

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Availability Information

With our new online scheduler you can see up-to-date availabilities on our calendar and choose your inspector.  You will need to provide some basic information first. In some cases we are holding a date for you: If you do not see the date we agreed upon on the...

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Signing Agreements

You will be required to sign agreements for most of our services- you can see and sign all of your agreements in one place by following the prompts on our emails (you can search your inbox for Builder Buddy or Spectora– Spectora is our inspection...

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