Some people get the cheapest home inspection they can find in order to save a few bucks. Not us. Oh no, not us! We went with the most expensive guy on the market, and added lead-paint testing and asbestos testing. And we got our own pest inspection even if the seller supplied one. I will not even tell you how big our total inspections bill was compared to normal people’s normal home inspections. It was huge! But we recognize how saving one penny now can cost you later. And it’s our first home and we’re tired people with an active toddler, so we wanted no surprises. We tested it all.
Chris was adamant about testing for lead paint even though everyone said it was almost guaranteed we’d have some in a house this age (1960s) and the best solution was to just paint over it anyway. He just wanted to know. In the end, we’re glad we did. The house is entirely and completely lead free! That’s one worry off our minds for when we renovate. Or when we catch Gabby gnawing down the walls like a teething beaver.
The inspector did find asbestos-type popcorn ceiling stuff in one closet (the old water heater closet), the heater closet, and around some pipes in the attic. We’re getting samples of all of those to be tested to be sure. There was also a small half-ripped out patch of vinyl tiles in the garage that he thought might have asbestos. The closets asbestos and the tiles in the garage need to be removed, but the pipe stuff in the attic is fine apparently. The inspector did mention it costs a lot of money just to get the asbestos remover guys over though, so you might as well get it all done at the same time which is what we plan to do. We’d just feel tons better knowing that stuff wasn’t in our home.
Other than that, we found a few cracks in some walls. Apparently nothing that indicates major problems. Some minor funky home repairs and half-way done improvements in the attic and garage. There were also some issues with condensation corroding the heater duct, something we need a heating contractor to fix but shouldn’t cost much more than a couple hundred dollars or so we’ve been told. The old water closet will need to be fixed up too, they took out the water heater and just left the outgoing pipe open (for steam I’m guessing, it goes to the roof). Weird! The pipe will need to be removed and the hole patched.
The pest guy found some evidence of termites, normal in this region. The place was tented in 2003 and needs it done again. Not a big deal. There was a couple of places where you could see minor termite damage, and one spot of dry rot. Nothing that tenting and replacing a couple of inches of wood won’t fix. “Pretty good” was the final grade.
The only thing we were unhappy about was a section of wall between the master bedroom and the master bathroom. There was evidence of past water damage and past termite. A small section of the wall was actually soft! But the inspector and the pest inspector agreed we only needed to change the (shoot, i don’t know the word, the long wood board between the floor and the wall?) and add some reinforcement behind the wall. No structural damage, no need to change the whole wall. And there’s no sign of current water/termite damage in that area.
All that being said, being in the house for 3 hours this afternoon was great! All the inspectors said the house was in great shape and just had those minor issues. The sellers bought this house for 565k in 2003, put 100k of repairs and improvements on it, and we’re buying it for just about the same price they paid. Not a bad deal. We’ve seen some other houses with “100k” put in it and you go “where did the 100k go?!”. I was initially afraid they had put money to make it look good on the eye but left major issues covered up. Turns out under closer inspection it was kind of the opposite. The paint job was HORRIBLE. Towel bars in the bathroom were not aligned. It’s just really stupid stuff that is so easy to fix, I don’t know why they did such a sloppy job at it. Oh well, even I can fix those so it’s not a big deal but it does boggle the mind.
Considering the inspection results, it looks like we’ll be moving forward with this house purchase. Our escrow closes November 18th and then we should have some new keys to show off! Who wants to help us move on Thanksgiving weekend? Oh yeah, I know you all want to!