Severe weather can certainly cause damage to your home. But seasonal weather adds wear and tear over the months and years that also needs to be addressed through consistent maintenance.
Routine home maintenance can pay off when the time comes to sell your home. At that point, your home will require a detailed inspection conducted by a professional home inspector.
In this article, we’ve gathered a listing of top issues you can expect from a home inspection. This is a good starting point for guiding your home maintenance efforts.
Top 9 Home Inspection Issues in Alabama
A home inspection’s purpose is to help the buyer determine exactly what they are buying, making sure there are no major issues with the home. This list was developed by the American Society of Home Inspectors.
1. Grading and Drainage
The home’s landscape grading must move water away from the foundation. Not only that, but the gutters and downspouts must be in good repair and clear of obstructions so that rainwater flows off the roof through the downspouts. Downspout extensions can also help guide water away from the foundation. Water around the foundation can cause cracking and leaking into the basement or crawl space.
2. Electrical Wiring
Older homes are especially prone to wiring that is not up to the demands placed on them from a growing list of appliances, computers, and screens. In addition, modifications to wiring over time may fall out of compliance with current electrical codes. Proper grounding is a particular issue found by home inspections. Other issues include missing ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) outlets that are required in areas with water such as kitchens and bathrooms.
3. Roof Problems
Wear and tear on shingles from wind, hail, and rain require regular maintenance to replace loose and missing shingles. Rubber boots around pipes and damaged attic vents or flashing may also require periodic replacement. Finally, even though asphalt shingles normally have a 15 to 40-year lifetime, they do need to be replaced at some point.
4. HVAC Systems
Furnaces need to be serviced on a regular basis including filter replacement and cleaning. In older homes furnace issues appear from malfunctioning controls to improper exhaust pipes/vents. Air conditioning systems can also demonstrate problems from inadequate cooling, to poor ventilation as well as noisy compressors and fans. It may also be that the furnace or HVAC unit is at the end of its useful life, requiring replacement.
5. Overall Maintenance
You can tell the level of regular maintenance when you approach a home. With poor or nonexistent repair, you find cracked and peeling paint to crumbling masonry along with makeshift wiring and plumbing. Broken fixtures and appliances also add to the deterioration. Even though many of these items might be relatively minor in nature, a long list can add up to serious time and money.
6. Structural Problems
What is most often found under this category are windows and doors out of alignment as well as damaged floor joists, rafters, and foundation walls. These can be very serious problems. We’re experts at foundation repair and can help with a free inspection and repair estimate.
7. Plumbing Issues
This area includes dripping faucets, clogged drains, and leaky pipes under sinks or in the basement or crawl space. Small leaks can also cause rotting and mold or mildew buildup. For example, if a toilet has a leak, it could cause rotting in the floor. That requires flooring replacement. It’s important to keep on top of all these items before they develop into major problems.
8. Home Exterior
This often shows up as poor caulking and sealing around windows as well as broken or cracked window panes. Weather stripping around doors as well as flashing on the sill at the bottom of the doors are key items to keep out weather and water. It’s a never-ending battle.
Quite frequently, older homes do not have adequate attic ventilation nor sufficient insulation. These problems can be addressed by installing vents and adding insulation. This also helps with energy efficiency. Many older homes also have crawl space issues that cause excess moisture and the resulting rotting and mold. It’s best to work with experts to add drains, insulation, and vapor and moisture barriers.
A survey of home buyers conducted by Porch found that 86% of home inspections identified at least one item that needed to be fixed. Ranked at the top were roof, electrical, and window problems. Gutters, downspouts, landscape grading, and foundation issues were also big items on their list.
We Can Help with Foundation Issues
As you review home maintenance challenges, we suggest consulting the professionals at AFS Foundation and Waterproofing Specialists for a free inspection and repair estimate.