Mark´s Home Inspection Service - ASHI Certified Home Inspections Since 1994

Craig's Blog | Articles and Info for Realtors® and Homeowners

HOLY MOLDY BASEMENT Sunday, 24 May 2009 07:47 by Craig Haas

This photograph was taken in a basement of a home that had flooded.  Notice the water lines that show the height that the water rose to.  The mold that is growing here is quite obvious, since it covers virtually every surface in the lower level of the home.  The type of mold(s) is not known without testing.  Testing requires taking a sample and sending it to a lab for analysis.

Some molds are visible, like this, while others are only sensed by smell.  There are different ways of testing molds that are visible from those that are strictly odorous, but not seen.  Many molds are harmful to humans and all molds should be cleaned.  In a case such as this photo, it would require a professional mold remidiation contractor to properly clean the home.

If you think you have mold, visible or not, give us a call to come take a smell and/or a sample for analysis.



Value versus Price of a General Home Inspection Tuesday, 19 May 2009 16:21 by Craig Haas

The difference between value and price can be a difficult and complicated concept to explain to a client.  Clients are typically spending a considerable amount of money; after all, a home is one of the largest purchases people make in their lifetime.  The value of the Home Inspection will become much clearer when items are discovered that need repair or replacement.  It is imperative to have an experienced Home Inspector working on your clients behalf.  The price that one pays for an inspection is a tiny fraction of the purchase price of a home and the price difference between an experienced, ASHI Certified Inspector and someone with little to no experience is typically not much. 

Ask your Inspector questions before you schedule their services. How long have you been an Inspector? Are you a Certified Member of ASHI?  What other training or credentials do you have?  It’s foolish to have someone working on your behalf with little knowledge or experience to save $50.00.  It’s not what you saved that counts, but what you received for the money you did spend.

Generally people do not know whether or not they have had a bad Home Inspection until they have had a good one to compare it to.  When I use the word good in the previous sentence, I mean thorough, unbiased, and accurate.  A professional Home Inspection should be all of those things and more.  It should be performed by someone who is knowledgeable, ASHI Certified and will stand behind their findings.  A Home Inspector should be using tools to find and document defects and safety concerns in and around a home.  There are too many items and systems to inspect and test in any property to simply look around with a flashlight and a notepad jotting down a few comments now and then.

The value of a thorough, unbiased, and accurate Home Inspection can be immeasurable.  Items can be discovered during an inspection that may save your clients thousands of dollars.  The PRICE is what you paid – the VALUE is what you received, and it can be immeasurable.


Poorly installed pipes Monday, 18 May 2009 21:51 by Craig Haas

flexible pipeThe photo at the left shows an improperly installed flexible drain line under a sink. We would recommend changing this to smooth PVC, so that it will not clog as easily.  Consult a plumber to repair.

The following image shows a discharge line from a sump pump.  This pipe has become disconnected just above the backflow prevention valve, so that all of the water will now simply spray into the basement.  Fully reconnecting the discharge line will allow the sump pump to operate properly.      disconnected

Are the utilities on? Thursday, 14 May 2009 22:10 by Craig Haas

Home Inspections in the foreclosure and vacant house market can be a challenge, so it’s a good thing that we like challenges.  Many homes that we have inspected lately are vacant and some of the utilities are often not functioning.  This makes the task of inspecting the systems somewhere between difficult and impossible.  It is in the best interest of the buyer to have all utilities on for the inspection.

Without water for example, no plumbing fixtures can be tested for pressure and/or drainage.  There is no way to tell if there are active leaks in the systems.  In some homes the copper piping has been stolen.  If there is no natural gas on, the heating system can’t be checked for function nor the gas lines themselves tested for leaks.

There are still many items that can be inspected, but obviously not all.  We feel that it’s important for a buyer to get as much information as possible about the home.  If it can be coordinated, it’s always best to have all utilities on; GAS, WATER AND ELECTRIC to allow for a complete General Home Inspection.