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Definitions of Home and Building Inspections
Before buying a home, it is heavily advised that you get a home inspection done by a trained professional. This holds true when buying any type of residential or commercial property. A home inspection provides a checklist report of the structural state of the house. However, certain things a typical home inspection report does not cover are issues dealing with asbestos, radiation, termites, mold and lead. If you suspect your house may have one of these problems, then you need a trained and licensed inspector in that area. The following items often appear on home inspection checklists.
Structural elements – The general state of the building's walls, ceiling, floors, roof and foundation. Some elements, like wall damage, are easier to repair than others, such as damage to a house's foundation.
Exterior evaluation – Examination of the outside of the building, including wall coverings, landscaping, grading and other exterior features.
Plumbing – Evaluates the condition of drainage and waste pipes as well as bathroom fixtures such as toilets, showers and sinks. However, a plumbing evaluation does not include a sewer inspection, which inspects the pipes going to and from the house. Remember that if a sewer line to your house breaks on your property, it is your responsibility to get it fixed.
Home systems – This includes the air conditioning system, water heaters, and furnaces. It also examines duct work and other ventilation systems. Often damage to one part of the system means extensive replacements.
Electrical – All the electrical components of a house, such as the main panel, circuit breakers, wiring and receptacles. This is important because a malfunctioning electrical system could easily start a fire.
Appliances – This covers any appliances sold with the house, from the very big fridge to the very small smoke detector.
The International Association of Certified Home Inspectors is a non-profit organization that offers the proper tools, knowledge and information for professionals within the industry. Become a member today!
When a home or other building is up for sale, it must be inspected by a licensed home and building inspector. He or she makes sure the building is structurally sound and does not feature any major flaws, such as cracks in the foundation, leaking basements, crumbling roofs or questionable plumbing. Everything must be up to code. Processes may involve testing for water quality, checking for damage by pests, like termites, and lead screening.
Such professionals have a checklist of things they routinely look for in a structure, such as the presence of radon, proper ventilation, electric and heat components, and energy efficiency. They must also check that all fire exits are cleared. Home and building inspectors may have backgrounds in civil, electrical, or mechanical engineering, architecture or construction.
Home and building inspection companies can offer many services for residential and commercial customers, whether they are selling or buying a property. Inspectors have many check points to verify when going through a home or business. They then create and file a report based on their findings. From residential houses and apartments to condos and commercial office buildings, inspectors are called in for many types of jobs.
The home inspection industry was started essentially by real estate agents who wanted an element of liability in the process, particularly on the side of buyers. If a material defect is found in a house, apartment, or other building at inspection, this may be a deal breaker for the buyer, who has a couple of options. They can tell the seller to fix the problems in question, or decline the offer entirely.
Home owners and sellers looking to hire a building inspector can often get referrals from their real estate agent. They can also get online and check listings of licensed local providers.