Common Home Inspection – Exterior Damage

Look up! Wear on a roof may be readily apparent if it is very advanced. However, a roof that is just starting to age can be subtle defect that the home inspector can uncover. Resurfacing a roof costs thousands of dollars, and will cost much more if the existing roofing surface needs to be removed prior to re-roofing. If a roof will need to be resurfaced in the foreseeable future, this may be a negotiable item.

The overall exterior siding and the condition of the exterior materials and related items will be inspected and reported. This includes: brick & stucco, wood siding, vinyl siding, paint, trim boards, and all related items. The condition of a decks support and/or rotting of the wood will also be inspected.

All interior and exterior doors will be inspected for any damage, missing doorknobs, door striker plates, and to make sure none of the doors stick at the frame. The exterior doors will be inspected for missing weather stripping, hardware, or water damage. The door from garage to residence should be a 20-minute fire rated door. Modern standards require 1 hour burn time for attached garage walls/ceilings which would require a 5/8″ drywall mudded and taped. Also, all mandoors into the home from the garage need to be fire rated (either a 20 minute burn door, a solid wood door, or steel fire rated) as well as attic access panels within garages (either a pushup panel or pulldown ladder). Attic hatches need fire rated drywall as well. All windows will be inspected for cracks, torn or missing window screens, moisture in between the panes, proper caulking around the window frame, and to make sure they all open and close properly.

Whenever possible, looking to discover problems before they start is suggested. For example, almost 75% of Basement water problems come from improper grading of the land around the home or from downspouts that let water out too close to the home! Your home inspector should be sure that the land is properly graded to divert water away, which will help to reduce the possibility of water intrusion and consequent damage.