Once you have found a house that you love and your offer has been accepted, one of the next steps you will need to complete is to have an inspection performed on your Bristow, VA area home. While home inspections can be nerve-wracking for both the buyer and the seller who may fear something disastrous coming up in the inspection, inspections are vital in ensuring that the homebuyer knows what they are getting themselves into.
The inspection will also help you to determine what needs to be done with the home, and it can help you to decide how you want to spend your money updating/modifying your new home. However, if you have never gone through a home inspection before, you may be wondering what the most common problems are that inspectors find.
To help you get an idea of what to expect, here are five of the most common problems we find at Lambert Home Inspections as well as what you need to know about these problems.
#1 Double Tapping in Electrical Panels
One of the most important things your inspector will check for is to make sure that there are no problems with the home’s electrical wiring. One common problem that inspectors find with a home’s electrical wiring is finding what is known as double taps within the electrical breaker box.
This is where two electrical circuits are attached to a single breaker. This is known as double tapping and it is a critical problem as it can lead to a fire if not corrected. A common way to correct this problem is to have twin breakers installed. Due to the severity of this problem, it would not be unreasonable to request the seller to address this issue before the sale closes.
If they refuse, you will want to have this taken care of by an electrician as soon as possible after you take possession of the home.
#2 Smoke Detectors Are Over 10 Years Old
One of the first things your inspector will look for is to make sure that the smoke detectors in the home are not only working but that they are also not ten years old or older. Your inspector will easily be able to determine the age of the smoke detectors by looking at the installed on, or manufactured on, date listed on the smoke detector.
It is important that smoke detectors not be over 10 years old as they are not guaranteed to work this long, and they may not protect your home in the event of the fire. However, should your inspector find that the smoke detectors need replacing, it will likely be the responsibility of the seller to have them replaced as many states require the seller to install smoke detectors before the sale closes.
#3 Exterior Trim Rot
Your inspector will also pay special attention to the home’s exterior during their inspection in order to determine if there are any serious structural problems. One of the most common problems inspectors discover on the outside of a home is exterior trim rot.
This rotting is usually the result of water damage. You should consider replacing this trim before the water damage to your new home becomes more extensive, and more costly to repair.
#4 Damaged Exterior Caulking
While inspecting the exterior of your home, the inspector will also look for damage to the caulking, paying particular attention to the caulking around the door and window frames.
While damaged caulking is a common problem, and not the most serious issue to come up in an inspection, you should consider fixing/replacing the damaged caulking soon after you move in in order to make your home more airtight, improving the home’s overall energy-efficiency.
#5 Dirty Air Ducts
As part of their inspection, the inspector will also look at the HVAC system to make sure that it is working properly. They will also likely remove vent covers to look at the condition of the home’s air ducts. It is not uncommon for these ducts to be dirty, particularly if the HVAC system is older. In this case, your inspector will likely recommend that you have the ducts cleaned as this can help your HVAC system to run more efficiently.
The fact is that every house will have some issues come up during the home inspection. However, if you know what to expect you will be better prepared to prioritize your budget and negotiate with the seller. Contact us to learn more about home inspections and what generally turns up in Bristow, VA home inspections.
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