Personally, I am wary of “Home Inspectors”. It sounds like a racket, and what could they know that I don’t know?
In the past couple of days I placed an offer on a home. From a business standpoint the property needed a professional inspection.
A trusted professional recommended AmeriSpec Home Inspection Service, and without hesitation I called and set an appointment.
To my delight, my inspector was already at the property site when I arrived.
He introduced himself and told me he had already made a complete exterior inspection which had included him climbing upon the rooftop.
We then began a slow methodical tour of the outside perimeter of the house.
He next showed me how and where all utilities were connected to the structure. During the walk around he made comments as to the quality of construction.
He also named most every tree in the yard and the importance of maintaining the trees so that the limbs would not impede upon the roof or the roots grow under the slab.
Next, he took me on a room by room tour of the house pointing out ventilation, quality of construction and checking any and all electrical and water devices as we went. He went as far as unscrewing the metal from the fuse boxes to check which switches were connected to various areas of the house.
We continued to the garage and utility rooms and he made recommendations regarding storage and furnace maintenance
which I will adhere to.
We inspected the fireplace and chimney and he showed me a brick lined closet which will be ideal for wood storage.
Finishing in the kitchen, and with a heads up on the thermostats and some tips on saving energy, we completed the inspection.
Let me tell you how happy I am that I had a professional inspect this property. My I knew that a trained person had looked and told me that I was purchasing a well built quality house. My understanding of the importance had shifted and I now realized:
a. all home inspectors are not crooks
b. a professional opinion is worth the price
c. listening and learning pay a dividend
Home Inspection Checklist
A thorough home or condo inspection should evaluate many components including structural framing, physical components, electrical, plumbing, heating, and air-conditioning systems.
1) Attend the inspection and learn as much as you can about the property. Make sure to follow the home inspector, ask questions and take notes.
2) Look to see if the inspector is equipped with the necessary engineering tools including electrical testers, a fuel gas and carbon monoxide detector, moisture meter, ladder, inspection mirror, flashlight, and level.
3) The home inspector should determine the condition of the roof surface, the exterior facades, doors and windows. The land grading around the home should be examined, as well as the condition of decks, patios, porches, driveways and sidewalks.
4) In addition, the physical, plumbing, heating, air-conditioning, and electrical systems should be thoroughly inspected and evaluated.
5) The physical condition of the interior of the home should be searched for problem signs. The engineer should determine if there are indications of past water damage in the attic or lower levels of the home and whether the home is susceptible to water intrusion in the future.
6) The inspector should look for materials that may be asbestos containing materials. The home inspection should also include checking for signs for wood destroying insects.
7) The inspection should evaluate all electrical and mechanical components of the home and look for aluminum electrical distribution wires, electrical systems that are not adequate for modern usage, lead and galvanized steel water supply pipes, aged and inefficient heating and air-conditioning systems.
8) When necessary, consider optional testing of underground storage tanks, testing for lead-based paint, testing drinking water for bacteria, testing for radon gas in air, and mold testing.
Depending on the property size, a standard home or condo inspection in Miami will cost approximately $500. You can expect to pay an additional $400 to test for mold.
If you are ready to purchase a property, do yourself a favor and find a liscensed home inspector. You can begin your search by calling this list of Home Inspection Companies in Miami.