At 9am last Saturday, I met with the home inspector to go through my new home. Overall, the inspection went well with the exception of the roof – which was reported as being “repaired” 8 to 10 years ago. The inspector, Chris from Home Check, was extremely thorough and seemed to know his stuff. At times I felt like he was almost too “doomsday”-ish but that’s better than the other extreme, a lackluster inspection followed by the cashing of my check. While he couldn’t look into walls, he pointed out every single possible fault or trouble area to a level of detail I didn’t expect but welcomed readily. While I don’t know how much experience a typical home inspector has, he had been doing it for five years and my house was the first on his list of three that day (he never does more than three, cuts down on fatigue and quality of work). He was a quirky guy but good to work with.
The termite guy just seemed to walk around the house, poke his head in a few places, bang on a few walls, and write up a report. The gist of the report was: remove any rotting wood and ensure that the mulch in the front of the house was low enough so that termites couldn’t start up families in it and migrate into the house. The seller told us that the house had been treated with termite prevention a while back but no one has since reported of any problems with termites. I’ll just pitch the rotting firewood and be on my way.
The home appraisal guy just walked around the house and was generally very anti-social. The lender, who setup the appraisal, said he’d run around $350. He was in and out before anyone really knew he was there.
Now… the roof issues. There were three main problems:
- The filters for the vents in the roof were clogged (the inspector said we should just pitch the filters all-together) and so the attic was getting too hot. The high temperature had activated the FRT (fire retardant treatment) in the wood, evidenced by a white chalky residue on the wood, because the wood thought it might be on fire. The net result of the chemical activation was that the wood was now weakened and possibly rotting.
- The plywood under boards, to which the shingles are nailed to, were showing signs of weakness. Some were weak because of the FRT activation and some were weak because of age. One was very obviously sagging.
- One of the support beams appeared to have a cut in it and needed additional support. The inspector said to get a certified roofer in there to check it out and fix it – specifically ask for a through-bolt (where you put the bolt through the beam) instead of just nailing some boards onto it for support.
Outside of the roof, there were only some minor cracks that needed filling (to prevent water damage) and some other minor areas that needed a bit of attention. The water heater needed a new anode rod, an upstairs door needing to be hinged better, etc. Nothing serious that would be a deal breaker.
I faxed the home inspection report over to my agent and we decided to ask the seller to repair the damage to the roof. According to him, the seller is obligated to repair up to 2% of the value of the home because of the contract and I seriously doubt the repairs will cost more than $6,000. Specifically, the request will read:
As a result of the home Inspection:
Have a licensed roofer evaluate and correct any damage to roof shingles, plywood, and support beams. Seller to provide buyer with roofing cert.
Buyer hereby releases the home inspection contingency
Also, I uploaded all the pictures I have of the property to Flickr, if you’re interested check them out here . (the pictures are in no particular order and the dog is just their dog, I thought he looked cute)
I can almost smell it!