Orange County certified home & commercial inspector

Office:  949 716-0934    Cell:  949 981-6558    E-mail:  seay@cox.net

 

New Home Inspections

What does it mean when your builder tells you your home as been inspected and approved by the city?
It means a municipal home inspector has inspected the home and it would be in your best interest to hire a professional independent inspector.

Do you know the difference between a home inspection from a municipal home inspector and a professional independent inspector?
First, a municipal home inspector is looking for the home to meet the standards of construction as well as the requirements of the city or county. An independent inspector is hired by you and is therefore conducting the inspection as your representative without any bias.

Second, the municipal inspectors can be overwhelmed given the number of inspections they are required to conduct to keep up with the workload. On average, a municipal inspector spends at least two hours in the office, the balance of their time is spent in the field conducting anywhere from ten to fifteen inspections per day. Add in a minimum of 20 minutes of drive time between inspections, and they're done by 4:00 pm. Now, let's do the math: how much time did they spend on your site? Answer: approximately 4 minutes. Our firm schedules and conducts a maximum of two thorough inspections per day per inspector.

Third, municipal inspectors are not inspecting the entire home in one day meaning you may have different parts of the home inspected by different inspectors. As an independent inspector, schooled in all aspects of home construction and their systems, we can complete a through inspection in one day including the scheduling of any necessary subcontractors such as water and sewage service companies.

Should your home be inspected during construction?
Yes. Once construction is complete, problems may not be as evident and may be more difficult to repair. This is where the municipal inspector's talents are best applied. If electrical, mechanical or structural issues are discovered, they can be corrected prior to the drywall installation. This it to your benefit because if it is necessary to cut the drywall (or stucco) to correct issues, it can be very difficult to match the texture and you may end up with visible repairs on the walls of your new home. There is also the added, often unavoidable, investment of time and aggravation when dealing with the scheduling of the repairs. The final inspection should be conducted after all utilities are turned on and the appliances are installed. A complete home inspection by an independent inspector upon completion of construction is recommended to be sure nothing was missed and repairs can be made before you move in.
 

Orange County certified home & commercial inspector

Should I tell my builder I will be hiring an independent inspector?
Yes. You should make contact with your inspector as soon as you sign and contract with the builder. Let your builder know you plan to have the work inspected by an independent home inspector so they will know you expect the work to be done properly. This is also a benefit to the builder as it provides another set of eyes to ensure that they're putting out the best possible product. This also allows the home builder to correct any deficiencies during the process as they are usually more inspired to "make things right" on a job that is in progress rather than after they have moved on to the next job.

The above mentioned electrical, mechanical and plumbing inspections should be conducted following the installation of each system. The builder should be provided with at least one week's notice of each inspection.

Isn't the builder responsible for the quality of the home?
Unfortunately, no. In most cases, the builder's responsibility is not the quality but the quantity of homes built. The builder is responsible to meet minimal standards at best. It is not difficult to build a home that will be problem free during the length of the builder warrantee. A home that will be in good condition, given proper maintenance, in 35 years is an entirely different process. The average length of home ownership is less than ten years, so perhaps you are not concerned with the state of the home in 35 years; however, you will probably still be in the home after the warrantee has expired. Once you list your home for sale, most purchasers will require a home inspection from an independent home inspector. Any problems discovered at that time would be your responsibility, not the builder's, because the warrantee will have expired.
 


 

Are all these inspections really necessary?


No. But it will make a significant difference in making your home ownership a more pleasant experience. If you are purchasing a home that is already near completion, the final inspection is still a good investment that can pay for itself over and over again. If you are purchasing an existing home, a home inspection can provide you with the details necessary to make an informed decision when making an offer on a home. The more you know about work that needs to be done versus changes you'd like to make to a home, the better equipped you will be when approaching the settlement table.

As an independent inspector, we are hired by you to look out for your best interest and so you might consider us to be consumer advocates. There are a number of potential hassles and problems related to skipping the inspection process. Unless you consider yourself pretty handy, no one knowingly plans to purchase a home with problems. If you did, you would not consider expending the time, hard work and aggravation of the construction process in the first place. As your representative, you can be guaranteed that we will do everything we can to see that you end up with a quality home.

The benefits of the inspection process include:
 

  1. Saving time, money and aggravation - The builder should arrange for repairs if problems are found after you move into the home. Every time you have to stay home from work to meet with a repair person, it will cost you money one way or the other. There are better ways to spend both your time and your money.

     

  2. Peace of mind Whether you receive a clean inspection or the builder repairs issues found during the inspection, you will have piece of mind and confidence that you have purchased the home you deserve and your money was well spent. Hindsight is 20-20 and is much more costly.

     

  3. Education - The inspection process can be very educational. You will likely walk away from the inspection with knowledge of your home that you would not have otherwise received. We provide as much information as possible about both the construction of your home as well as tips on how to maintain it.
     

Orange County certified home & commercial inspector HOME Orange County certified home & commercial inspector