Blog

Blog

THE SELLER’S GUIDE TO PREPARING FOR YOUR HOME INSPECTION

October 21, 2020  /  Home Care & Maintenance  /  Marti Reeder

THE SELLER’S GUIDE TO PREPARING FOR YOUR HOME INSPECTION

If you’re thinking of selling your home this year, chances are your buyer is going to want to inspect your property. And we’ve put together this helpful guide to help your home shine during the inspection!


WHAT A HOME INSPECTION COVERS

An inspector will look at certain visible elements of the home, both inside and outside. Depending on the size and complexity of the condominium or home, the inspection will take anywhere from 1 ½ to 6+ hours.

An exterior inspection includes a review of the:

  • Roof, gutters, eaves, chimneys
  • Walls and siding
  • Grading (whether soils are sloping toward or away from the home)

Inside the home, the inspection will assess the:

  • Foundation and crawl space
  • Attic
  • Plumbing
  • Electrical system, fixtures, and outlets
  • Heating and cooling systems
  • Appliances (water heater, kitchen appliances, washer/dryer)
  • Dryer exhaust
  • Fire door (if there is an attached garage)
  • Presence of smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, radon detectors (where applicable), etc.
  • Ventilation systems (fans, ducts, etc.)
  • And more!


COMMON PROBLEMS

The items most frequently called out by inspectors are:

  • Earth-to-wood contact (vegetation & dirt too close to the house)
  • Roofs
  • Gutters and/or downspouts
  • Problems with grout or caulk in bathrooms
  • Crawl spaces (standing water, damaged insulation, debris)
  • Attic venting which is inadequate (mold and mildew)
  • HVAC systems
  • Evidence of rodents (typically in attics and crawl spaces)
  • Hot water tank missing seismic strapping or a pressure relief system
  • Decks (railings, support braces)
  • Dry rot (multiple locations)
  • Appliances which are not in good working order


HOW YOU CAN PREPARE

As a seller, there are many actions you can take prior to the inspection to help present your house in the best possible light.

EXTERIOR ITEMS:

  • Keep earth six inches away from (or below) the siding of the home and all other wood (such as a deck or patio).  Make sure that the earth slopes away from the home, not toward it.
  • Trim vegetation so nothing is closer than 12” from the exterior of your home and deck.
  • If you have vegetation interfering with overhead cables, contact your utility providers to see if they are able to safely trim this for you.


ROOFS, EAVES and GUTTERS:

  • Have roof cleaned. Avoid pressure washing!
  • Clean gutters and downspouts.
  • Keep trees and branches trimmed – a minimum of six feet from both the roof and any utility lines.


BATHROOMS:

  • Re-caulk tubs and showers; replace any wax seals that have failed on toilets.


CRAWL SPACES:

  • Check for signs of rodents (feces, damaged insulation). Hire a reputable pest control company or contractor to repair damage, set traps, and block access points.
  • Ensure all earth is covered with a 6mm black vapor barrier. Where sheets of the barrier meet, the overlap should be 6 to 12 inches.
  • Remove any debris (such as old wood, nails, etc.)


ATTIC:

  • Check for signs of rodents (feces, damaged insulation). Hire a reputable pest control company or contractor to repair damage, set traps, and block access points.
  • Double-check that all exhaust fans are properly attached and are venting to the outside of the home.
  • Ensure that all insulation is in place and is not blocking any vents.


HVAC:

  • If your furnace hasn’t been cleaned and serviced in the past 12 months, schedule it now. If the work has been done, get a receipt that you can share with the inspector.


HOT WATER TANK:

  • Add seismic straps, following state guidelines (typically double-strapping is required).
  • If you don’t have a pressure relief valve on your hot water tank, hire a professional to add one.


APPLIANCES:

  • If any of your appliances are not working, this is the time to repair and/or replace them.


GENERAL TIPS:

  • The inspector will need access to all appliances, the water heater, furnace, electrical panel, and attic and crawl space access points. Be sure you are prepared for the inspection by creating easy access to these areas.

Have your washer, dryer, and dishwasher empty at the time of the inspection. The inspector will typically cycle these appliances.

Basically, the Home Inspection Is a report card of the current condition of your home. We’d all love to get an A+ but that would be unusual (even for new construction!). While the Inspector will use the Inspection to teach the buyers about your house, the primary concerns should be the Three S’s: safety, structural, systems.

 

 

 

Comments are closed.

FROM THE BLOG

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!