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House Inspection Standards Vary So Do Your Due Diligence

September 25th, 2009

House inspection standards vary from state to state so do your due diligence. If you are a buyer wanting to make sure you are buying a good house, hire a home inspector who can explain to you the home inspection standards in your state that will affect the inspection process he will conduct on the property you are planning to buy.

It is essential that you know the home inspection standards in your state because there are many things not covered in a standard home inspection. Many buyers assume that every damage or defect in a house will be detected by the home inspector and every part and system of the house will be inspected when in fact house inspectors are limited in the places they can access.

It is important therefore that you know which parts or systems are not examined in a regular inspection so you can schedule another specialized inspection.

In some states, house inspection is not yet a state-regulated activity. These states have allowed state inspection organizations or national organizations to take over the certification of inspectors.

If your state does not license house inspectors, check the state or national inspection organization where your inspector is a member and research their inspection standards and the systems and parts of the house which are not inspected during regular inspections.

Typically, the parts or systems that are not inspected during standard inspections as listed by many organizations and states are fences, alarm systems, water softening equipment, septic systems and low voltage wiring systems such as outdoor lighting, security systems and phone lines.

Home inspectors doing regular inspection also do not inspect bug problems and potentially hazardous substances such as radon, asbestos and lead-based paint. Outbuildings are also not inspected if they are not included in the agreement. Parts of the house that cannot be physically accessed by the inspector are also not inspected.

Oftentimes also, the list of parts not inspected depends on the age of the home you are buying. The newer the property, the faster the inspection is conducted so the inspector has more time to do things such as testing oven heating capacity or microwave strength. When inspecting older homes, the inspector will focus on the roof, furnace, drainage and the hot water tank.

All in all, do your own due diligence because there are many parts excluded in a standard house inspection as inspectors and inspection associations avoid potential professional liabilities and want to get compensated for time factors and specialized training.

Home Inspection

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