March 18, 2023

Can Home Inspectors Miss Something?

The answer to that is simply yes! Home inspectors are human and they are subject to the same humanity as you so they can miss things and most will readily admit that they aren’t perfect. That being said, nobody is out to try to pull a fast one on you with absolute incompetence. A home inspection is an essential step in the home buying process. It provides buyers with valuable information about the condition of the property they are considering and helps them make an informed decision about whether or not to proceed with the purchase.

However, even the most thorough home inspections can sometimes miss critical issues that could have a significant impact on the safety, value, and overall livability of the home. In this blog post, we’ll discuss some of the commonly missed items on a home inspection and why they matter and how we make every effort to not miss these items as well as what we can offer if we do.

  1. Roofing Issues

Roofing problems are among the most commonly missed items on a home inspection. Inspectors may not be able to identify minor leaks or damage that can lead to more significant problems over time. A damaged roof can cause water damage to the interior of the home, leading to costly repairs and potential health hazards like mold and mildew. This issue stems from some inspectors not walking roofs or getting an up close look at the material. As a fireman there isn’t a roof that I find myself uncomfortable walking on however that being said sometimes a roof is unable to be accessed due to the material or the height (I’m talking three story buildings where theres no feasible way for me to transport a ladder tall enough to view these roofs by walking) and for that I take a drone and though I can’t get the “feel” of the roof I can find the major defects that will lead to future damage.

  1. Electrical Wiring Problems

Electrical issues are also commonly missed during a home inspection. Faulty wiring or outdated electrical systems can pose a fire hazard, and it’s essential to identify any potential problems before purchasing a home. Inspectors may not be able to identify issues with wiring hidden behind walls or in hard-to-reach areas. Fire hazards are my number one priority as I spend the other half of my life protecting life and property from fire. Hidden wiring can always be a problem and that is why anyone building a new home should at the very least get a two phase inspection with one of the phases being before the drywall is installed.

  1. Plumbing Problems

Plumbing problems can be difficult to identify during a home inspection, particularly if the pipes are behind walls or in hard-to-reach areas. Leaky pipes, corroded pipes, or outdated plumbing systems can lead to water damage, mold, and other health hazards. A thorough inspection should include a check of the water pressure, drainage, and sewer lines. I also like to watch the meter when I know all of the water is off to see if there is any movement. I’ll give it to you that this method will not catch a small leak but that is why I always suggest to my clients that at the slightest inkling that they believe there could be a leak somewhere they should always contact a plumber sooner rather than later because water doesn’t wait for anyone.

  1. Structural Issues

Structural issues can be challenging to identify, but they can have a significant impact on the safety and value of a home. Cracks in the foundation, sagging floors, or issues with load-bearing walls can be expensive to repair and can pose a danger to the occupants of the home. The issues with the structure are fairly often hidden by finishes within the house i.e. flooring and drywall. This is why I make several passes around the outside and inside of a home looking from all different angles for anything that could indicate movement or dysfunction of the structure itself.

  1. HVAC System Problems

The heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system is essential for maintaining a comfortable living environment. A malfunctioning or outdated system can result in high energy bills, poor air quality, and potential health hazards. Inspectors may not be able to identify issues with ductwork or other hidden components of the HVAC system. The things that are missed in an HVAC system are often attributed to poor maintenance over the history of the system and that’s why I always recommend obtaining all pertinent records to the maintenance of the system within the option period if possible.

But after all of that’s said I would like to remind everyone that Seberg Property Inspections participates in the InterNACHI Home Buy Back Guarantee which means that if a defect is found that was missed by me then the home will be purchased back from you at the full purchase price no questions asked. Read more about the Home Buy Back Guarantee here.

In conclusion, a home inspection is a crucial step in the home buying process, but it’s important to remember that inspectors can sometimes miss critical issues that can impact the safety, value, and overall livability of a home. Buyers should be aware of these commonly missed items and work with their inspector to ensure a thorough and comprehensive inspection. Additionally, buyers should consider hiring specialists in areas such as roofing or plumbing to conduct more in-depth evaluations if they have concerns.

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