Troy Pappas a local home inspector to Hampton Roads writes a great article about expectations on a home inspection. All homes should be inspected before purchase.
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Managing Expectations for a Home Inspection in Virginia Beach
One part of my job as a Virginia Beach home inspector is to manage client expectations. By that I mean it is important that a home buyer know exactly what they are getting when they hire a home inspector. This is especially true if this is the home buyer’s first purchase. There need to be realistic expectations of what a home inspector is able to find and report. There are quite a few issues that a home may have that are outside the scope of a home inspection.
There are shows on HGTV and DIY network that highlight all the problems found in homes during remodeling or adding on additions to homes. These issues are found after tearing down walls and removing parts of the structure. Obviously this is not something that can be done on a visual home inspection.
Most if not all home inspection reports come with disclaimers regarding what is and is not covered during a home inspection. This is not the home inspectors way of trying to not to do a thorough job for their client. This is all about managing expectations so you know exactly what you have hired your home inspector to do. Realistic expectations are necessary to making sure there is no misunderstanding about the job your home inspector is performing.
So What is a Home Inspection in Virginia Beach
A Virginia Beach home inspection is a visual and non invasive inspection of major home systems and components for safety issues and defects. A home inspection is not a technically exhaustive examination of the house. There is no way to tell what is exactly going on behind a wall or under 9-13 inches of insulation. There may be evidence to an issue, and that is what will be in your home inspection report along with recommendations for a more exhaustive evaluation or other remedy.
A thorough home inspection gives an accurate report on the visual condition of the home at the time of the inspection. The condition of a home can change in only a day or two due to numerous variables that were not present at the time of inspection.
So What Does a Visual Inspection Mean?
A “visual” inspection means that a home inspection report is limited to describing conditions in those parts of a home that an inspector can see during the inspection. Obviously, parts of the home that are permanently hidden by wall, ceiling and floor coverings are excluded, but so are parts of the home that were inaccessible during the inspection for some other reason. Some reasons might include lack of an access point, such as a door or hatch, or a locked access point, or because an occupant’s belongings blocked access, or because of dangerous or unsanitary conditions.
There can be many more reasons. The point is that if an inspector can’t see a portion of the home, the inspector can’t assume responsibility for ensuring that a safe and proper condition exists or that systems are operating properly in that hidden space.
Home Inspectors are Like General Practioners
As a Virginia Beach home inspector I am not an expert in every home system, but I am trained to recognize evidence of potential problems in the different home systems and their major components. I will let you know when a problem is serious enough to recommend a specialist inspection. I may also recommend that you have an issue repaired or replaced by a qualified contractor, such as a plumber or electrician.
I look forward to being your Virginia Beach home inspector, and provide you with the most thorough and complete home inspection in Hampton Roads. Understanding what that home inspection entails will help to provide a mutually beneficial partnership.