What To Do If Your Home Inspection Has Sustained Flood Damage

How to Make the Most of Your Home Inspection

You’ve searched and searched, and you’ve finally found it: your future home. It’s perfect — at least as far as you can tell, anyhow. But while having your offer accepted will be the first official step toward homeownership, there’s another crucial step you’ll need to do before you start packing boxes and picking out paint swatches — you need to get a home inspection for your potential abode.

A home inspection may not be the most exciting way to spend a few hundred bucks, but it’s one of the smartest investments you can make. Home inspectors are trained to spot potential snags that could lead to costly repairs down the road. And if you catch those issues before you’ve moved in, you may be able to get the seller to help you cover the cost of fixing them, which could save you a lot of money in the long run. Here’s everything you need to know about getting your home inspected.

Choosing an Inspector

You may be tempted to do a DIY inspection or enlist a handy friend to scope out the house, but hiring a professional is the best bet. Home inspections typically cost between $300 and $5001, but don’t let price be your deciding factor — it’s worth paying a little extra for an experienced inspector with a stellar reputation. After all, a thorough inspection could save you thousands of dollars if a major issue turns up.

Scheduling Your Home Inspection

Your contract will most likely mention a “due-diligence period,” which is the amount of time you’re given — typically around 10 business days — to get your home inspected. That may not seem like much time, but inspectors are used to the time crunch. Just contact your home inspector as soon as possible, and try to choose a time when you’re available to tag along. You’re not required to be there, but it can be helpful to see any trouble spots in person and ask questions.

What Your Inspector Should Look For

Not only will a home inspection help you protect your investment, but it’s also a perfect opportunity to get acquainted with your future home. Your home inspector should walk around outside to make sure the foundation, roof and siding are in good shape and water drains away from the house. Inside, they should check the plumbing, test the outlets, open and close every window, heat up the oven, run the air conditioning, inspect for evidence of termites, look for any ventilation issues and more.


Hiring a home inspector? Here are things to remember

The more she looked for problems, the more she found them. Studs had rotted. The one wall in the basement that was covered in drywall when she bought the house turned out to be in even worse shape.

It was only the beginning. A contractor started to repair the foundations and vanished, but not before starting a fire which made the house uninhabitable. Marchuk successfully sued him, but the settlement is coming in slowly on an installment plan.

“When I listed it in in 2013, somebody was interested, and got a home inspection with a different company. He said the house was shifting — you can tell by the roof that it’s kind of caving in on one side. The two inspections, if you compare them, are just night and day. Theirs was more thorough, and had drawings of how the house was shifting, and that the foundation is failing, which that home inspector could see, because we were disclosing that there were these massive cracks in the basement, which the other inspector didn’t know. He said that even the siding was buckling, and you could tell that something was going on with the house because of the way all this stuff was.”

Because they’re not allowed to cause damage, the best inspector can miss serious problems.

“The biggest thing confronting me is that I’m a guest in somebody’s house,” says, Ont.-area home inspector. I can’t do certain things. In this house this morning, I cannot verify that there’s live knob and tube, but I have every reason to believe there is.”

The seller may be deliberately hiding problems. Here’s what to look for.

Kingston, Ont. inspector Cam Allen looks for fresh paint and fresh drywall in odd places, especially basements. “If I walk into a house, and the upstairs has been lived in, but the basement is brand-spanking new, nice and clean and everything else, you go: ‘Why was this just fixed up?’”


Smart Tips for Getting the Most Out of a Property Inspection

Well, I really just don’t like paying for an inspection, where if anything is actually wrong, I am told to “contact a qualified expert.” Whether it is foundation, electrical, or plumbing, the inspector will usually just tell me to get a quote from “a qualified expert” or get that quote themselves.

Despite the lack of clarity that comes from most inspections, they are very expensive. I have seen inspections cost $650 for a single family home and up to $30,000 for a large apartment building. In any case, that is money that could be used to actually fix the things that are wrong, or at least it seems to me.

Make sure your inspector gives you bids for the items he calls out.

This is a big one for me. If I’m going to be paying $400 or more for an inspection, then I sure as heck better be getting a quote on the work for the things that are wrong. It is important to understand as the buyer (person ordering the inspection) that any bid you get from the inspector is going to be marked up in some way. That is fine, though; you still want it.

Once you have an inspection, have a separate contractor bid out the work.

You should always, and I mean always, get two bids for work, but this is particularly true of work being done during the escrow process. In fact, you should walk the property with your contractor and ask them to bring up anything that they think may be wrong with the house.

Make sure your inspection includes sewer, plumbing, and electrical.

These are the three areas where I have been hurt worst when buying properties. Everyone gets super worried about a bad foundation, but you can usually tell a property has a bad foundation just by looking at it, and inspectors are pretty good on that item. Electrical, plumbing and sewer are more difficult because they require more work. Access to the foundation is easy – walk around the building or go into the crawl space under the house. It is far more difficult to check the wiring behind the walls or the insides of pipes.


Why You Need To Get A Pre-Purchase Home Inspection

Not getting one is like buying a used car without taking it for a test drive, or buying it based on colour. Sounds crazy, right? But think about it, when it comes to buying a house you are literally investing at least fifty times more money, and when people spend more time buying their groceries than they do getting a house properly checked by a pro, they pay for it.

You want someone who will tell you the truth about a home, even if it means walking away and not buying it

They can spot potential problems and the red flags; they can tell you which ones need to be addressed now and which ones can wait, and what it might take to make it right. Then from there, you can make an informed decision about your future and decide if the home is worth your investment

For example, during a pre-purchase home inspection, a pro will check out the roof and tell you roughly how long it should last you, if it needs to be repaired or if you’ll need to re-shingle before next winter. They’ll take a look at the building structure and foundation; check for any major cracks or issues that will have to be fixed sooner rather than later, like a heaving foundation or mould in the basement or attic.

They’ll also check out the electrical, the plumbing and HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) and warn you of any upgrades or major repairs. Because if a house needs a new furnace, or if the plumbing needs to be upgraded or there’s knob and tube wiring, believe me, you will want to know before making an offer. Those fixes aren’t cheap!

Too many times people fall in love with the eye candy – granite countertops, hardwood floors, crown-moulding, 8-foot ceilings, stainless steel appliances, etc. – and they don’t see the water damage on the ceiling, the mould in the basement or bathroom; crumbling mortar on the exterior, or the rotting framing around windows.


Questions You Need to Ask at Your Home Inspection

A home inspection is a critical part of the home-buying process, especially for first-time buyers. After a seller accepts an offer, the buyer can pay for a home inspection to find out if their dream home is really a money pit. Buyers should look for an independent inspector who is licensed and insured, look over the inspector’s report closely, and not be afraid to ask questions. We’ve come up with a list of questions worth asking your home inspector before, during, and after your potential home’s checkup.


has had one buyer who didn’t have a home inspection. That buyer bought a 1920s house that was at greater risk for lead, radon, and asbestos than most houses, so she had them sign an addendum absolving her firm of liability. VanderZanden notes that the cost of inspections, sewer scoping, and septic inspections, well-flow tests, water-quality tests, and radon tests can just add to the bill. That said, it’s less expensive to find a massive problem and walk away than it is to buy a home and encounter catastrophic problems.


an inspection can cost between $300 to $600, depending on the location and size of the house. However, even having your sewer pipes scoped can add another $125 to the bill. If there are extra fees for specific tests, make sure those are clarified early.


Generally, states require home inspectors to be bonded, but don’t require other insurance that might protect both the inspector and the client. As Coates says, insurance coverage for errors and omissions comes in handy.


Coates notes that he’s spent four years as inspector, but 25 years in home repair. While your home inspector may have basic knowledge of the inspection process, it helps when they also have some practical skills to back it up. An inspector doesn’t need a full career in home repair, but they should have training or education that homebuyers can confirm and also membership in groups like the National Academy of Building Inspection Engineers and National Society of Professional Engineers. If you aren’t sure, ask.

How To Find An Honest Mold Inspection Company

Tips For Finding The Best Mold Inspector

The Initial Phone Call and Price

From the very beginning of the call you want to be able to explain your situation. The inspector should also ask you a number of questions to determine what is going on to best help you.

Proper Training

Without question, before you go ahead and hire a mold inspector, you need to know that this person is qualified to help you…  The mold industry is not yet regulated. For this reason, it is vital to choose an inspector that has adequate training. 

Work Experience

You want to find out first if the mold inspector does mold inspections part time of full time. Ideally, you want to find someone who is dedicated to mold full time

Mold Inspection Procedures

Experienced and well-trained mold inspectors will have a checklist and or routine to follow.


It is important for mold inspectors to have other professionals to help you with the mold removal process. Finding the right mold removal company can take a lot of time and effort, so the more help you can get with this part of the process, the better.

Factors to Consider When Looking for a Mold Inspection Company

Exposure to mold can have serious health effects such as a cold with accompanying flu symptoms. It is vital to have mold inspection conducted in your home to eliminate such issues that might emanate from mold. The choice of a mold inspection company is not easy. Therefore, you have to consider several factors before opting for a mold inspection company. This article explains these different elements.


You should do extensive research before settling on a certain mold inspection company. Most companies have websites and the “about us” page reveals whether they are industry certified or not. The mold inspection field might appear to be hugely unregulated. However, check whether they have certification from the Institute of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration

Testimonials and Experience

Testimonials and experience are essential factors to consider. They help ensure that you do not settle for mold inspector who is actually a rookie. The testimonials could be by word of mouth or you can find them in the inspectors or company’s website. This therefore implies that you have to enquire about the company and any possible recommendations. It ensures that you settle for a company that will exceed your expectations


It is vital to hire an inspector who has insurance that duly covers them. This protects and guards you in case there might be any possible losses. Insurance is therefore very important, especially pertaining to liability if any accident happens in your house. This also applies when there is sub-contracting. Such contractors also have to be well trained and insured as well. They ought to bear documents or credentials clearly depicting the same.

Price and Pre Testing

The price of mold inspection varies from company to company. It is good and prudent for you to get quotations and compare them before choosing and settling for one. Some companies insist on pre-testing mold but this is not important, as it escalates the prices. Professionals who insist on doing these tests only want your money and to ultimately drain your bank. It is also not ideal for you to choose quotations that are exceedingly low hence; this should be a major red flag. Only quacks charge very low prices, as they are not properly trained but just merely experimental.

How to Choose a Certified Mold Inspector and What You Should Pay


How many mold inspections has the company performed? An experienced mold inspector most likely will have performed several hundred mold inspections per year. That way you know the mold inspector has seen a wide variety of scenarios. Ask your mold inspector how many verifiable mold inspections have been performed in the Los Angeles area.


There a several types of certifications and as many certifying organizations. The mold inspection company should carry Workers’ Compensation insurance and professional liability insurance. They should hold membership in good standing with at least one nationally recognized trade association for mold professionals. The certifying organization should also be nationally recognized with an online registry of certified professionals. In both cases, you can verify the mold inspection company’s trade association membership and the mold inspector’s certification. Not all certifications are created equal! Make sure the mold inspector’s certification is based on verifiable work experience and the certification is issued by an accredited educational organization

Inspection Equipment

Every mold inspector should have the basics: a moisture meter, an air sampling pump, and a respirator. Several other tools should be at the inspector’s disposal including sampling media (swabs, air cassettes), flash light, gloves, knee pads, and a mirror. There are various types of each of these tools. Ideally, the mold inspector will have the latest technology available. There are other tools that are high tech such as a thermal imaging camera which is a tool designed to detect temperature variations typically associated with moisture.


With the abundance of review sites on the internet, it should be pretty easy to get an idea about the mold inspection company’s reputation. Any company that has been around for several years is bound to have a couple unsatisfied customers. But what is even more alarming are no reviews at all. It makes you wonder if the company has been around long enough (or is qualified enough) to be considered for the job at hand. With some due diligence on your part, you should be able to see a trend in the volume of reviews: a majority of good reviews means you probably have a reputable mold inspection company under consideration. Also, make sure the company actually responds to reviews. If a company ignores any review, it could mean a company lacks the appreciation for every customer served. A popular subscription based consumer review site is Angie’s List. Reviews are provided by real people that pay to be on the site. There is a mutual understanding among members that the reviews are only useful if they are truthful. A paid subscription-based consumer site means members have a vested interest in providing genuine reports because s/he will be depending on other reviews when making his/her hiring decision. Other popular review sites are Better Business Bureau, Google Maps and Yelp

Mold “Test Only”

In my opinion, mold inspection companies should only perform mold testing and not perform mold repair. It is considered a conflict of interest to do both because the test and repair company may exaggerate the problem in order to overcharge for a solution. Mold inspection costs for “test only” companies are paid at the time of the inspection

Picking The Right Mold Inspection Service

It takes a lot of things in order to live healthily, and one of the most important aspects is to have a healthy living environment. We know it’s pretty obvious, but that’s why proper cleaning and an adherence to hygiene really matters, even more so than having a place that looks good. In order to achieve that, you need to clean regularly and have preventative maintenance done, such as regular mold inspections.

That’s easy enough, right? You either jump online or grab your Yellow Pages, book an appointment with the first mold inspector you find, and you’ll be assured of getting excellent service and wonderful results, all at a reasonable price. Well…it doesn’t quite work like that. Just like any other type of business, there are companies you’d be delighted to work with, and then there are the less desirable ones. Read on for a few tips to help you choose the right mold inspector

First, remember that not everyone has the same kinds of problems with mold. Some people are strictly taking precautions by having an inspection done. Others have had recurring issues, and they’re praying the problem is gone. The wise choice is to pick a company that handles numerous issues, inspections to let you know what your situation looks like, and eradication to get rid of mold once and for all.

What a company does is important, but how it does it is just as important. Specifically, the company you consider ought to have access to the latest equipment. They should have testing equipment for moisture testing, air quality testing, HVAC reports, leak testing, and microbiological testing. Once the inspection is concluded, you should expect to receive a report laying out how serious the mold situation is and what can be done to resolve it

Next, it’s important to find a company that’s been in business for a while and has a proven track record. If an inspector has been on the job for a long period of time, they likely have gained the experience to recognize a number of different issues and have a number of solutions. You’ll also want to ask if the company is licensed and if their employees hold certifications for providing mold inspection services.

Tips to Get an Effective Mold Inspection

Here are some things to know when hiring a contractor to complete a mold inspection.

The mold inspection and remediation process is a balancing act of ensuring occupant health and safety and preserving the property value for the owner

The mold inspection company you choose should offer a value proposition that stands apart from others. The credentials should include a certification, experience, a fine work product and a competitive price. In addition, the company should be able to provide multiple references of past customers who were satisfied with their experience.

To minimize the chance for conflict of interest, the mold inspection company should strictly be in the business of inspecting, testing and consulting. That way, the company has no vested interested in benefiting from the repair that may be necessary through mold remediation.

The inspection report should be a two-part document – lab results and an inspection report. Once mold testing is conducted, samples should be sent to an independent laboratory for analysis. The results of the lab analysis will be interpreted by the inspection company, which will then provide a comprehensive analysis of the property condition, laboratory findings and recommendations

The report should be easy to understand when you read it. Some inspectors simply provide lab results without any additional documentation. An inspector also serves as a consultant and should be able to produce a document to reflect his/her interpretation of the inspection process