Frequently Asked Questions
Who is your best inspector?
- Our inspectors are all trained to provide the same level of expertise with more than 200 inspections under their belts, each, before inspecting on their own… but with their own personalities. All of our inspectors become Certified Professional Inspectors through InterNACHI (International Association of Certified Home Inspectors).
- We encourage returning buyers and Realtors to choose or refer inspectors according to the best personality fits.
Do I really need a Radon test?
- The Surgeon General of the United States says that next to cigarette smoke, Radon is the next leading cause of lung cancer.
- Radon causes more deaths annually than traffic accidents.
- More than 33% of all homes in the Treasure Valley have radon exceeding the EPA’s suggested action level of 4.0 picoCuries per liter in air.
- Radon mitigation complying with EPA standards costs from $1500 to $2500 or more.
- Many states currently require Radon measurements as part of the real-estate transaction. (Some real estate brokers in Idaho are pushing to make this a requirement, here in our state, also.)
- Idaho’s EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) is pushing public education on this issue -- making it far more likely in the near future that most homebuyers will be asking about radon levels in the homes they are approaching to buy.
Do I really need a Sewer scope?
- Older types of sewer service line piping connecting house drains to public collection systems are prone to leaks that attract tree roots.
- The cost of repair and/or replacement of sewer service lines typically ranges from $2,000 to $20,000.
Can I get a Military or Service Person discount?
- We happily offer discounts to active military or military veterans, first responders, nurses, or teachers.
- Please let us know when you book your inspection.
When do I need a Mold Inspection?
- If someone expected to be spending a lot of time in the home is known to suffer from allergies, asthma, COPD, bronchitis, or a compromised immune system, it’s probably best to have us complete an air sample analysis for possible molds at the same time as performing your basic home inspection. Don’t take unnecessary chances with the health of these people who already suffer. (Fortunately, this represents only a very small percentage of our population. However, unfortunately, even the medical industry tends to under-serve them.)
- If your inspector finds any visual evidence of likely mold, or if he finds wet environments likely to produce mold, he will include that information in his report. He will likely recommend further investigation through a mold analysis or remediation.
What if my house doesn't “Pass Inspection”?
- Actually, as home inspectors, we never “pass” or “fail” a house. We’re NOT CODE INSPECTORS. We have no governmental authority. The value of our service is to tell you more about the house than you’ll be likely to discover any other way. Although we’re not code inspectors, we typically have more knowledge about the histories of codes and building practices used during the many periods of construction likely to be encountered in the Treasure Valley. We can help put the conditions of the house into proper perspective with respect to code expectations.
- The information conveyed during a good home inspection can help you complete your negotiations in a manner that you’ll still be content with 6 months from now. Hopefully, after you finally move into your new home, you won’t be surprised by any additional discoveries.
Should my house meet today’s code requirements?
- We feel that any house you approach to purchase should meet the code requirements that were in place at the time it was either originally built, or when it may have been substantially remodeled.
- It’s not really “fair” to ask a Seller to bring an older house up to today’s code standards. (As an analogy, that would be like making an offer to purchase a 1950 Cadillac car and insisting that the used car dealer install seat belts in it. Although seat belts might be a great idea, they are not expected to be in a 1950 Cadillac.)
- So, if you’re looking at a 1990’s house and want it to meet today’s code standards, we would likely reply, “Okay! Start with the bulldozer!”. (That’s because most codes change every few years.)
- That being said, if our inspectors encounter a GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupting) outlet in the bathroom of a 1950’s house, it had better be functioning correctly … even though it’s not expected to be there. (GFI-type protection wasn’t required until about 1978.)
Do you provide discounts for Townhouses or Condos?
- Yes, but with caution ...
- When purchasing townhomes or condominium properties, the homeowners associations are usually responsible for the exteriors and grounds. Therefore, buyers (and often even their representatives) will perceive that individual owners have no financial responsibilities or obligations to maintain those aspects of the overall property. However, that’s simply not the case. When you think about it, all the owners, collectively (through their association) still have both financial and contractual obligations to maintain the exteriors and grounds. It’s just that they must individually bear their “share” of the obligations through the voting board of directors. Therefore, when money must be spent for such obligations, it’s spent through their dues. And worse yet, if adequate money for needed maintenance, repairs, or replacement is not immediately available from the association coffers, then special assessments may need to be created. Who wants that kind of surprise as an individual homeowner?
- When general maintenance needs to be done by an association, all the members must be in agreement about what needs to be done, how much it will cost, and when the money will be spent. This can often exasperate individual owners when they might want something done sooner … or not at all.
- Therefore, we strongly recommend inspection of all the exterior surfaces, roof coverings, and grounds to avoid surprises that might come from misjudging the competency of the Association's Board of Directors.
- However, if the buyer still feels strongly that they don’t want to pay us to inspect roofs, exteriors, and grounds, we DO OFFER A DISCOUNT of $25.
Do you provide discounts for New Construction?
- No … and here’s WHY ...
- We perform new construction inspections exactly the same as for existing homes. We still need to check all the appliances, go into all the crawl spaces and attics, check all the roof surfaces, open and close all doors and windows, check all the outlets, get into each electrical panel, and operate all major mechanical systems, etc. Our meticulous routine stays the same, regardless of the home's age and condition. (Whether a home is new or older, perfectly maintained, or suffering from extended neglect, we still need to check the same number of details in order to provide the detail and peace of mind expected by those we serve.) About the only thing that sometimes changes is the number of imperfections we report. And many buyers would be surprised to learn that new homes often present as many imperfections as existing homes.
How do I pay my bill?
- You should have received an email from SendToAAD@gmail.com with a secure payment link for credit card and EFT (electronic funds transfer) payments.
- Alternatively, you can pay the inspector at the time of the inspection via cash, check, or money order.
- Also, you can call the office and make a payment over the phone with a credit card or EFT if you are less comfortable with the other options.
When will I get my report?
- By default (unless other arrangements are made), our full inspection reports are available by midnight of the following day of your inspection.
How does the whole process work?
- Congratulations! You have an accepted offer! Now you get to choose your inspector and schedule an inspection time.
- We will help you schedule an inspection time that meets the contingency period stated in your “Purchase and Sale Agreement”, IAR Form RE-21. (It’s very important to ensure that we get the inspection report back to you in time for you to review it and decide how to respond.)
- Next, your inspector will arrive at the property on the scheduled date and time.
- He will then inspect the property, taking digital voice notes and many photos.
- Once the on-site portion of the inspection is complete, and if you and your Realtor attend, the inspector will review his findings with you while still on site.
- If you and your agent cannot attend, short highlight videos of his findings will be recorded and sent to you via email within a few hours.
- The inspector will upload his voice and photo files to our transcription team.
- The transcription team will type and assemble the report findings and photos into a report template.
- The inspector will review what the transcriptionists have prepared--ensuring everything is correct and easy for you to understand. (This additional review step is very important in assuring quality and effective communication of everything that may be important to you.)
- By midnight of the following day, you will receive your report through our delivery system.
- You will likely review your report with your agent (if you’re fortunate enough to have one).
- You’ll decide on one of the following contractual reactions, based upon the report information: 1) Accept the property “as is”, 2) Ask for price adjustments, and/or 3) Ask for repairs.
- If repairs were agreed upon by the Seller (usually through an Idaho Association of Realtors Form RE-10, titled “Inspection Contingency Notice”), we will reinspect the property for your benefit … at NO COST … acting as your “interpreters” and “advocates” … to help you determine whether the Sellers have completed their promised repair obligations to your satisfaction.
- Your original RE-10 form is used as the basis for our “Repair Inspection Report”, which we can then deliver on site, as you’ll probably be getting very close to your closing date.
- Our reports are meant to be a manual for your particular property, with helpful information you can use not only for the transaction, but for your future ownership experience!
- Finally, as you may experience future homeownership questions, we love to remain available by phone 24/7 essentially FOREVER to answer your questions. (We’re proud of saying, “We’re not attorneys. We don’t charge for phone time.”)