A home inspection can be stressful, especially when you’re buying your first home. There are many great home inspectors in the Denver area that will uncover a home’s flaws and issues. But even some of the best inspectors can miss these costly hidden issues.
1. Older Home Issues
All inspectors are very well versed in issues related to older homes, however, they often do not check environmental hazards associated with older homes (pre-1978) such as, lead paint, asbestos, and radon. Many older homes have lead-based pain or asbestos tiles. An inspector can speculate about whether certain parts of the home contain a hazard, but only a specialist will be able to test the material. These hazards are expensive to remove or abate because they require specialists to handle these toxins.
Also, less obvious hazards such as an old railing or an old pool lining may go unnoticed. Older railing may not have the right spacing between the rails (current code is four inches between rails) and an old pool lining may have holes or other damage that the inspector cannot see because the pool is covered or full of water.
2. Wall and Floorboard Damage
It is typical for a home to get a fresh coat of paint before selling and a carpet deep clean. However, the new paint can cover issues like water or animal damage. Inspectors cannot identify this damage and will not make holes in walls to asses their condition. Also, be wary of a home with brand new carpeting – that could be covering worn or damages floorboards. Again, inspectors will not pull up carpeting (unless part of it is already pulled up) to assess the condition of the underlying floorboards.
3. Roof Problems
A good inspector will walk the roof (weather permitting) to uncover any visible issues with the roof and any chimneys. If the roof is not accessible on the day of inspection, ask your inspector to come back another day to walk the roof – this is incredibly important since roof issues are not easily identified from the ground.
However, some issues are not readily apparent, even when the inspector is on the roof. Problematic rot or mold may affect the roof’s sheathing or animals may have made a home for themselves between the joists.
4. Malfunctioning Appliances
Issues with appliances is often the top things that home inspectors miss. Inspectors will give appliances the once-over, check to make sure they turn on, etc., but they don’t have time to mimic everyday use. For instance, they cannot run a large load of laundry to make sure the washer is properly working. Or the oven may appear to turn on properly but it can’t heat to the proper temperature. If you have a concern about a certain appliance, hire an appliance professional to take a look at it.