There are many times when an inspection can give you an advantage.If you're buying a home, getting a home inspection means you know about any problems and their solutions before you move in.
If you're selling a home, getting a home inspection means you know you're complying with full disclosure laws, and means you can consider selecting contractors rather than waiting for the buyer to do so. If you've just done extensive remodeling, a home inspection can help you make certain the contractors did the job correctly.
New Home Inspection
Because the quality of new construction quality is often not what it used to be some years ago, many buyers have independent reviews of their properties during various stages of the construction process, including slab, frame, and final inspection. This relatively inexpensive inspection protects your purchase, prevents unpleasant surprises, and ensures the quality home that you’ve dreamed about.
Whether you are selling your home on your own or using a realtor, it’s always a prudent idea to have a professional home inspection. Knowledge is power. All homes have strengths and weaknesses: I will help you answer how serious the problems are and which must be immediately addressed and which can wait. The more you know about your home, the more prepared you will be for negotiation.
1-Year Warranty Inspection
Most builders provide a one year warranty for new construction. Generally during this period of time the buyer develops a "punch list" of corrections for the contractor to repair under the warranty coverage. Some defects will not be obvious to the untrained eye. It is prudent to obtain a home inspectors list of items that will most likely be repaired by your builder at no cost to you. You will be reassured knowing that potential problems were addressed before they grew into something that could cost you a great deal down the road.
The best way to ensure that you are well informed about the strengths and weaknesses of a property is to have a professional home inspection. Home inspectors are trained to identify problem areas both small and large that may have been overlooked by the previous owners and to identify which require immediate attention.
Let your inspector spot the problems (new and old), before you commit to a major investment and decision. A trained professional has seen it all and will provide invaluable help in turning you into a knowledgeable consumer. Home owners can identify problems in the making and take preventive measures to avoid costly repairs. Sellers can understand conditions the buyer’s inspector may point out and put the property in better selling condition by making repairs
Tri-State Home Inspections is a certified 203(k) consultant and can help you with your FHA insured mortgage.
The 203K mortgage is an FHA insured mortgage that allows repair costs included into the mortgage itself. That means buying a house that may need a little work to make it perfect for you by getting just one loan to pay for repairs and pay for the house too.
Four Point Inspection
Tri-State Home Inspections offers the Four Point Inspection.
While it is never a good idea to price shop home inspection services, here at Tri-State Home Inspections we realize the money crunch potential home buyers face when purchasing a home. This is why we developed the four point inspection which is about 30% off of the price of a regular full home inspection. The four point inspection addresses the four areas of a home that potential home buyers seem to be the most concerned about, and are the most expensive items to repair. The four points include:
Roof: Includes a complete visual examination of the roof, including shingles, flashings and roof terminations, gutters and downspouts and ventilation.
Foundation: Includes a complete visual examination of the primary foundation, sub flooring, floor joists, rim joists, sill plate and support beams, water control, ventilation and insulation.
Electrical System: Includes a complete visual examination of the service entrance, main electrical panel, grounding and bonding, branch wiring, interior and exterior electrical outlets, GFCI’s, lighting and smoke detectors.
Plumbing System: Includes a complete visual examination of the main supply, main shutoff, supply piping, waste piping and testing all interior and exterior fixtures.
All four point inspections include a color PDF report that includes digital photos of the areas inspected along with recommendations on any necessary repairs that may need to be performed. The report is emailed to you in PDF format for ease of viewing and printing.
My job as your professional home inspector is to alert you to the possibility of unknown problems and potential environmental hazards in your current or potential house. Just because some of these hazards are invisible doesn’t mean they call for less vigilance on your part. Mine is a non-invasive visual inspection of your property. While I may be able to alert you to possible problems, my basic inspections are no substitutes for specialized contaminant testing.
Asbestos is a mineral fiber that can be positively identified only with a special type of microscope. There are several types of asbestos fibers. In the past, asbestos was added to many products to strengthen them and provide fire resistance and heat insulation. If disturbed, asbestos material may release asbestos fibers which can be inhaled into the lungs. Asbestos material that crumbles easily if handled or which has been scraped, sawed, or sanded into a powder is more likely to create a health hazard. Breathing high levels of asbestos fibers can lead to an increased risk of lung cancer, mesothelioma (cancer of lining of chest and abdominal cavity), and asbestosis (lungs scarred with the tissue). Houses built between 1930 and 1950 may have asbestos insulation. Most of today’s products do not contain asbestos. If asbestos material is more than slightly damaged or you plan changes that might disturb it, you require a professional for repair and removal. Before home remodeling, find out if asbestos is present.
Excerpts from U.S. Environmental Protection Agency “Asbestos and Vermiculite”.
Lead is a highly toxic metal used for many years in products in and around homes. Lead’s adverse health effects range from behavioral problems and learning disabilities to seizures and death. Because their bodies are growing quickly, children age 6 and under are at greatest risk. Primary sources of lead exposure for children are deteriorating lead-based paint, lead-contaminated dust, and lead-contaminated residential soil. Lead might be present in any home built up until the 1940s. Rarely found in source water, lead can enter tap water through corrosion of plumbing materials. Homes built before 1986 are more likely to have lead pipes, joints, and solder. New homes are also at risk: even legally “lead-free” pipes can contain up to 8 percent lead and leave significant amounts of lead in the water for the first several months after installation. Since the 1980s, EPA and its federal partners have banned or limited lead used in consumer products, including residential paint. Federal regulations limiting the amount of lead in paint sold for residential use started in 1978. If your property was built before 1978 or you are considering remodeling, renovating, or repair, you may wish to think about lead inspection. Water quality can be compromised by such other trace elements as iron, excess acidity, manganese, calcium, magnesium, mineral salts, hydrogen sulphide, selenium, chromium, arsenic, mercury, and cadmium.
Excerpts from U.S. Department of Environmental Protection, “Lead in Paint, Dust, and Soil”.
Mold (fungi) is present everywhere, indoors and outdoors. There are more than 100,000 species of mold, at least 1,000 of which are common in America. Species of Cladosporium, Penicillium, and Aspergillus are some of the most commonly found species. Mold most likely grows in bathrooms, basements, and anywhere else where there is dampness or water. Many types of mold routinely encountered aren’t hazardous to healthy individuals. Too much exposure to mold may cause a worsening of such conditions as asthma, hay fever, or other allergies. Fevers and breathing problems in a vulnerable individual are possible but unusual. When moldy material becomes damaged or disturbed, spores, which are reproductive bodies similar to seeds, can be released into the air. Exposure can occur if people inhale the spores, directly handle moldy material, or accidentally ingest the spores. Since all molds need water to grow, mold can grow almost anywhere where there is high humidity, dampness, or water damage. Most often molds are confined to areas near the water source. Removing the source of moisture through repairs or dehumidification is crucial in preventing mold growth. Correcting underlying water damage and cleaning the affected area is the best way to treat mold. If mold contamination is extensive, a professional abatement company may be needed. Excerpts from The New York City Department of Health & Mental Hygiene, Environmental & Occupational Disease Epidemiology, “Facts About Mold”.
Radon is a radioactive gaseous element produced in the disintegration of radium, a radioactive metallic element. It cannot be detected by the senses and can be confirmed only by sophisticated instruments and laboratory tests. The gas enters a house through pores and cracks in the concrete or through floorboards of poorly ventilated crawlspaces, especially when wet ground allows the gas to escape easily through the soil and disperse in the atmosphere. Radon is a lung carcinogen: the National Academy of Sciences estimates radon causes some 15,000 to 22,000 lung cancer deaths annually. The U.S. Surgeon General and the EPA recommend all houses be tested for radon. Houses with high radon levels can be fixed.
Excerpts from U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, “Indoor Radon”.
America’s existing housing needs help. Many of the 128 million homes in this country were constructed before modern energy and building codes were established. These homes often suffer from performance problems ranging from inflated energy consumption to poor thermal comfort to indoor air quality issue
Drug Testing The Home
Sad to say any more you never know what many of the homes have been used for. I provide a surface test to see what if any drugs have been used in the home. The test takes about 10 minutes with instant results. Drug users leave trace amounts of their drugs on everything they touch: clothing, packages, luggage, countertops, desktops, in the car, etc. These trace amounts of any of the illicit drugs can be detected on any surface suspected. I will only need a few nanograms (ten billionth of a gram!) of the illicit drugs to be wiped from the surface suspected.
The drug test will test for the following:
Tri-State Home Inspections covers a 60 Mile radius:Decorah, IA Waukon, IACresco, IA West Union, IASpring Grove, MN Lansing, IAOelwein, IA Preston, MNNew Hampton, IA Riceville, IAOnalaska, WI La Crescent, MNLa Crosse, WI Rochester,MN Waterloo, IA Winona, MNMason City, IA Dubuque, IAPostville, IA Ossian, IAPrairie Du Chein, WI Charles City, IASpring Vally, MN Chatfield, MNMcGregor, IA, Guttenberg, IAFayette, IA Elgin, IA Mabel, MN Harmony, MNCalmar, IA St. Lucas, IAWest Salem, WI Viroque, WIDesoto, WI Monona, IA