Steven L. Smith, Bellingham, WA Home Inspector (King of the House)

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No Inspection? Don't Take New Construction For Granted

I spoke a week back at a John L. Scott Real Estate class for new home-buyers. One well-intentioned student asked the realtor instructor if there was, financially, any justification to spend money for an inspection at a new property.

The realtor said a resounding "yes" and, when my time came, I further elaborated on that statement.

Here in the Pacific Northwest, I can think of a major reason to have an inspection at a new home. Sure, there are the run of the mill things -- insulation not installed, insulation packed around the B-vent, heat ducts that are not attached, plumbing vents that are not flashed or are plugged with caps so they do not breathe. Again, those are the minor, common, things.

The photo below shows one of those minor issues but, look closely at the picture and you will see a much bigger problem than a disconnected heat duct. This crawl space was full of water. This was, honestly, one of the dry spots. An estimate, of pooled water, put that quantity of water at over 700 gallons. Think about it, 700 plus gallons to evaporate up into the crawl space and the interior of the home.

This is a problem you really want to catch going in because, and I say this from experience, builders usually do not point out that problem to buyers. In fact, some builders downplay it. I had a client say that the builder told him "there is water there but it never gets high enough to get up on the structural wood or to lead to water intrusion through the floor -- not that much of a problem, being a crawl space and not a basement." Boy, that is really bad coaching, but the builder had a big financial stake in selling the property.

My advice -- New homes, get them inspected. 

 

 

 

Steven L. Smith

Bellingham WA Home Inspections

Steven L. Smith

If you enjoy nostalgia and music of yesteryear, click on Elvis' gold record to visit This Day In History. To explore The Stories Behind The Music blog posts click on the electric guitar. 

 

        

 

 

 

 

Comment balloon 84 commentsSteven L. Smith • August 29 2008 11:28PM
No Inspection? Don't Take New Construction For Granted
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