Hidden Home Defects to Watch For
No home is flawless, but certain physical problems can be expensive. Watch for:
- Water leaks. Look for stains on ceilings and near the baseboards, especially in basements or attics.
- Shifting foundations. Look for large cracks along the home’s foundation.
- Drainage. Look for standing water, either around the foundation of the home of in the yard.
- Termites. Look for weakened or grooved wood, especially near ground level.
- Worn roofs. Look for broken or missing copings and buckled shingles as well as water spots on ceilings.
- Inadequate wiring. Look for antiquated fuse boxes, extension cords (indicating insufficient outlets), and outlets without a place to plug in the grounding prong.
- Plumbing problems: Very low water pressure, banging in pipes
Ten Questions to Ask A Home Inspector
What are your qualifications? Are you a member of the American Association of Home Inspectors?
Do you have a current license? Inspectors are not required to be licensed in every state.
How many inspections of properties such as this do you do each year?
Do you have a list of past clients I can contact?
Do you carry professional errors and omission insurance? May I have a copy of the policy?
Do you provide any guarantees of your work?
What specifically will the inspection cover?
What type of report will I receive after the inspection?
How long will the inspection take and how long will it take to receive the report?
How much will the inspection cost?
Portions adapted from Real Estate Checklists and Systems and used with permission. (www.realestatechecklists.com)
Reprinted from REALTOR® Magazine Online by permission of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®. Copyright 2003. All rights reserved.
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