Each homebuyer has a different idea of their ideal home, often based on location and particular visual preferences. But one thing that all homebuyers want is a home that is fundamentally sound. This is why a home inspection is so important. We’ve compiled the ten most common deficiencies uncovered during a typical home inspection. If not addressed, these problems could end up costing thousands of dollars. Knowing what to look for, and performing your own thorough pre-inspection, will help you to identify areas needing repair or improvement before they grow into costly problems.
1. Damp Basement
Signs that a basement is damp include mold, mildew smells and efflorescence on the block or poured concrete walls. An inspector will do a visual check and should also have a moisture meter to detect different levels of moisture within the home.
2. Poorly Installed/ Defective Plumbing
Older homes that havent been updated may be subject to leaking and clogging that can be viusually detected. Plumbing like kitec has been banned because the fittings are prone to fail. The inspector will also check the water pressure and look for any discoloration when turning on the taps which could mean rusty pipes and a possible water quality issue that needs to be dealt with.
3. Older/ Poorly-Functioning Heating and Cooling Systems
If the home is heated with a forced air gas furnace and the hest exchanger is damaged or cracked it can pose a serious risk for carbon monoxide poisoning. If the furnace and AC are nearing the end of their life it will be recomended that they are replaced.
4. Older/ Unsafe Electrical System
In older homes there may be knob and tube wiring, undersized servicing or poorly done renovations and electrical circuits that are over fused. These could all pose fire risks and should be looked after by a professional licensed electrician.
5. Older/ Leaking Roof
There are many different types of roofs and roofing materials the most common being asphalt shingles. If the ends are curling, pitting, brittle, cracked or chipped its time to be replaced. Also look for bald spots where the granulars have fallen off. An inspector should have a ladder to get up and inspect the roof. If it's really bad the plywood may also need to be replaced.
6. Minor Structural Problems
More common in older homes, these problems range from cracked plaster to small shifts in the foundation. While this variety of problem isn’t large enough to cause any real catastrophe, they should be taken care of before they grow.
7. Poor Ventilation
Unvented or poorly vented kitchen stoves and bathrooms can cause moisture, mold and fungus which in turn cause air quality issues. Bathroom and range vents should vent to the outside.
8. Air Leakage
A cold, drafty home can be the result of any number of problems, such as illfitting doors, aged caulking, low-quality weather strips, or poor attic seals. This nature of repair can usually be taken care of easily and inexpensively.
9. Security Features
All homes need the proper smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. An inspector should also check locks on windows and doors making sure the home is secure. If the home doesn't have a security system or video doorbell it may be something to look into.
10. Drainage/ Grading Problems
This is the most common problem found during home inspections and is a major cause for wet, damp basements. Solutions to this may include new gutters and down spouts and re-grading to direct water away from the house.