We check the grounds for proper grading and drainage away from the house, vegetation in contact with or growing to close to the home such as vines growing on the house or tree branches that touch the house.
We inspect the foundation wall for indications of cracking, settling, and active water infiltration. We look for cracks and how they might affect floors and interior door and window framing. We inspect other structural components such as rafters, trusses, joists, sub-flooring, and framing that may, in the inspector's opinion, present a structural compromise or safety concern.
We inspect utility meters and shutoffs for easy access. We inspect the siding, flashing, soffit, fascia, window frames, exterior doors, stairs/steps, and decks/balconies.
We inspect the condition of the roof coverings, gutters, downspouts, vents, flashings, skylights, chimney and other roof penetrations. We inspect fireplaces and chimney conditions as well as the general structure of the roof from the readily accessible panels, doors, or stairs.
We inspect the attic for access, insulation, roof sheathing condition, electrical, roof penetrations, and structural members. We also check for proper ventilation through soffit, gable, roof, and ridge vents. We report on the general absence or lack of insulation and ventilation in the attic.
We inspect the crawlspace for access, insulation, vapor barrier, plumbing, duct work, ventilation, and electrical components. We will report on water infiltration, inadequate structural supports, and overall condition of the space.
We inspect the walls, ceiling, floors, windows, and doors. We inspect for handrails at steps, cabinets, counter tops, and other storage areas. We report on signs of water leaking into the house. We inspect the garage including firewalls, mechanical door openers, and safety devices.
We operate and inspect appliances that are present and deemed permanently installed by the inspector. This includes stove, oven, built in microwave, dishwasher, refrigerator, garbage disposal, and trash compactor. We report on overall condition and any defects, such as leaks, that are present.
We locate the main water shutoff. We inspect and run all accessible plumbing components such as water supply piping, manifolds, drain piping, sinks, drains, bath tubs, showers, and toilets; noting any leaks, low pressure, clogged drains, loose toilets, and supply piping that has a record of poor performance such as galvanized steel and polybutylene. We point out any visible fuel storage systems and sump pumps. We also inspect plumbing that is gas related including piping, shutoffs, and gas valves.
We inspect the water heater enclosure, heating system, exhaust piping, strapping, and relief valve piping. We report on the overall condition, making note of excessive wear and leaking.
We inspect the electrical line coming into the house, the main disconnect, and determine the rating of the service amperage. We inspect panels, breakers and fuses, the service grounding and bonding, all switches, receptacles, light fixtures, and GFCI receptacles. We report on any receptacles in which power is not present, polarity is incorrect, or if the receptacle is not grounded, is not secured to the wall, the cover is not in place, the ground fault circuit interrupter devices are not properly installed or do not operate properly, or evidence of arcing or excessive heat is present. We inspect the service entrance conductors and the condition of their sheathing. We report the absence of smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors and report the presence of solid conductor aluminum branch circuit wiring if readily visible.
We inspect the heating system and describe the energy source and heating method using normal operating controls and report as in need of repair furnaces which do not operate. We inspect the central cooling equipment using normal operating controls and report on cooling systems that do not function as intended. We inspect the visible distribution methods for deficiencies and visible venting methods for improper or deficient installations. We report on the age of the appliances and overall condition.