Home Inspection Checklist

While this checklist identifies the main things I will be examining during your home inspection, the fact is that every home is different, so I am always on the lookout for any problem or concerns, regardless of whether it is on this list. Being a home inspector is much like being a detective. Often the problems are not staring you in the face, but instead, you need to look for clues that lead you to the problems.

Roof System

  • Flat roof covering – condition
  • Sloped roof covering, valleys and wall flashings
  • Roof vents and hydro mast and plumbing flashings
  • Roof drainage and downspout systems
  • Chimney and chimney flashings
  • Skylights

Exterior

  • Exterior wall covering, flashing and trim
  • Gutters and downspouts
  • Attached decks, balconies, steps and porches
  • Grading around the house
  • Landscaping and vegetation issues
  • Garage doors and closers and safety issues in garage
  • Driveways and walkways
  • Exterior doors, windows and window wells
  • Basement walk-outs and catch basin drain
  • Safety issues in the yard

Structural System

  • Accessible components of the foundation and upper structure
  • Cracks in the foundation and upper walls
  • Basement dampness, leakage and prior repairs
  • Crawl space rotted wood members including sills, floor joists and beams
  • Support pillars
  • Basement floor including cracks
  • Wall, ceiling and floor joist structure
  • Sloping floors
  • Support beams and columns
  • Roof structure, trusses and roof sheathing
  • Fire rated separation party walls between adjoining townhouses

Electrical System

  • Exterior hydro service
  • Main hydro panel, wire connections and breakers
  • Service amperage capacity and grounding
  • Inspect wiring including under suspended ceilings and in attics
  • Test electrical outlets where possible
  • Inspect junction boxes and lights
  • Inspect wiring to exterior as well as outbuildings
  • Test all ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI) receptacles.
  • Insurance issues, aluminum, and knob and tube wiring, less than 100 amps, fuses

Plumbing System

  • Main water meter shut-off location, size and type
  • Water pressure/flow
  • Distribution piping type (galvanized steel, copper and plastic)
  • Hot water heater age, condition and venting
  • Drainage piping type and inspect for leaks, P traps and drain flow
  • Sump pump and sump pit
  • Kitchen, bathroom, laundry, plumbing fixtures, and leaks
  • Bathtubs/showers ceramic tile leaks

Heating System

  • Furnace or boiler operation
  • Type of fuel (gas, oil, electricity)
  • Furnace efficiency (conventional, mid and high efficiency)
  • Age, projected life expectancy and failure probability of furnace or boiler
  • Inspect heat exchanger if possible as well as condensate leaks
  • Electric baseboard heaters, hot water radiators and in-floor radiant heating
  • Vent system and flues
  • Air filters, including electronic filters maintenance
  • Air supply duct system. Do all rooms have a heat source?
  • Heat recovery ventilation (HRV)
  • Humidifier

Air Conditioning System

  • Inspect outdoor air conditioning unit and coil
  • Run air conditioner in warm weather
  • Inspect for temperature drop
  • Inspect for condensate leaks
  • Age, size and projected life expectancy and failure probability

Insulation

  • Amount and type of insulation and condition
  • Proper attic and crawl space ventilation
  • Vermiculite insulation because of asbestos concerns
  • Proper bathroom and kitchen exhaust fan venting
  • Basement and crawl space insulation and moisture barriers

Interior

  • Walls, ceiling and floors
  • Open and close all doors and windows and inspect for failed window thermal seals, including skylights.
  • Stairways, handrails and guardrails
  • Smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
  • Kitchen cabinets and counters
  • Gas fireplaces
  • I will comment on wood-burning fireplaces and make recommendations regarding whether a Wood Energy Technology Transfer (WETT) certified inspection is required.
  • Inspect basements walls for leakage
  • Inspect for visible mold-like substances, mildew and other indoor hazards such as asbestos
  • Inspect for vermin or other pests.
  • Inspect for other safety issues – i.e. low or small windows (means of egress), exposed well pump pulley, dryer vent material, smoke alarms, CO detectors, etc.


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"Chatham-Kent's Registered Home Inspector (RHI)"
Wood Energy Technology Transfer