More Blog Posts on Similar Subjects:

  1. The seller has to fix everything you find wrong with the house, right?

  2. Can I do my own home inspection?

  3. Are house numbers required by law in front of a house?

  4. What questions should I ask the home inspector during the inspection?

  5. Should I hire an engineer to inspect the house?

  6. Is a home inspection required?

  7. How can I tell if a house has insulation?

  8. What are the warning signs of a sinkhole?

  9. Do you see similar problems with houses in the same neighborhood?

  10. What do I need to know about a condo inspection?

  11. Does the home inspector also check for termites?

  12. What is the best way to negotiate repairs after the home inspection?

  13. How do you inspect a dryer vent?

  14. What should I look for when buying a former rental house?

  15. What questions should I ask a home inspector I’m considering hiring?

  16. What tools do you use for a home inspection?

  17. How do sellers try to fool the home inspector?

  18. How much does a home inspection cost?

  19. What should I wear to a home inspection?

  20. What should I look for when buying a “flipper” house?

  21. Can I do my own wind mitigation inspection?

  22. What different types of specialized inspections can I get?

  23. What are the questions a home inspector won’t answer?

  24. What is the difference between a building inspector and a home inspector?

  25. What do I need to know about buying a 1950s house?

  26. Do you lift up the carpet to look for cracks in the floor?

  27. How can I know how much damage there is inside a wall if the inspector found termites in the baseboard?

  28. What are the common problems of different types of house foundations?

  29. What are the common problems to look for when buying a 1970’s house?

  30. What are the warning signs of a dangerous deck?

  31. What are the common problems to look for when buying a 1960s home?

  32. What are the common problems to look for when buying a 1980s house?

  33. What is the average lifespan of plywood siding?

  34. Should I use my realtor’s home inspector or choose one myself?

  35. Can a home inspector do repairs to a house after doing the inspection?

  36. Should I use a contractor or a home inspector to inspect a house I’m buying?

  37. Should I get a home inspection before signing a contract to buy the house?

  38. What makes a house fail the home inspection?

  39. When did the first Florida Building Code (FBC) begin and become effective?

  40. Should I trust the Seller’s Property Disclosure Statement?

  41. Should I only hire an inspector that is a member of a national association like ASHI, InterNACHI, or NAHI?

  42. Should I buy a house that has had foundation repair?

  43. What is a “cosmetic” defect in a home inspection?

  44. Where are the funny home inspection pictures?

  45. Should I follow the home inspector around during the inspection?

  46. How can I reduce the risk of an expensive surprise when buying a house sight unseen?

  47. What does a home inspector mean by calling something “not readily accessible”?

  48. How can I tell if there is asbestos in a house?

  49. Who should pay for the home inspection?

  50. The seller gave me a report from a previous home inspection. Should I use it or get one of my own?

  51. How can I make sure I don’t get screwed on the home inspection?

  52. Does a home inspector give cost estimates for repairs?

  53. Do home inspectors inspect outbuildings?

  54. What are the pros and cons of concrete block versus wood frame construction?

  55. Are there any minimum inspection standards that a Florida licensed home inspector must meet?

  56. Can a Florida licensed contractor do home inspections without having a home inspector license?

  57. What inspections does a bank or mortgage lender need for loan approval?

How to Look

at a House


A blog with answers
to your questions about
HOME INSPECTION
and HOME MAINTENANCE

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Welcome to our blog!
We want you to be an informed homebuyer, and each blog post is a question that we have answered for our friends and customers over the years. Hope they help you make a good choice for your next home.

   The buyers were a young couple moving up to the rural Gainesville area from South Florida, and looking forward to country living. They had visited the house twice, liked what they saw, made an offer that was accepted by the seller, and were already planning their garden in the backyard.

    Two things immediately struck us as a little odd as we began the inspection: the main electric panel was on a pole next to the home, which is normally only done for mobile homes, and the crawl space openings around the base of the home were covered with solid fiber-cement panels that were both nailed and screwed in place. The wife mentioned that she had looked at the county appraiser’s page for the property, and it showed that there was once a mobile home on the site. So we thought possibly they had reused the original mobile home electric service when the seller built the home.
    Eventually we found one fiber-cement panel that was only secured with screws, removed it, and Greg began to explore the crawl space. What he found, essentially, was that the mobile home was still there. A pole barn of about twice the square footage of the mobile home had been built over it, with the additional area framed-in, floored, then tied into the original trailer with new doors, and the whole thing sided over. The steel base frame of the mobile home had been cut away, and was laying on the ground under the home, with stacked concrete blocks supporting the upper structure of what remained of the single-wide trailer body. Extensive electrical and plumbing defects, including what appeared to be an overflowing cesspit, added to the long list of issues we uncovered.

     Needless to say, the buyers were not happy. And we were amazed: none of this was apparent in a casual perusal of the home. The husband mentioned afterward that he noticed in their second visit that the floors in the front of the home (mobile home area) had a lot of bounce when he walked across them, whereas the back of the home (enclosed pole barn structure) didn’t, and he had wondered about that. But none of us, at the beginning of the inspection, had any idea that the home would be quite such an outrageous mess.

     His father-in-law had told them beforehand that they were wasting their money buying a home inspection. But they had a great story to tell him when they got home and, also, they were VERY glad they had the house inspected.


While we hope you find this series of articles about home inspection helpful, they should not be considered an alternative to an actual home inspection by a local inspector. Also, construction standards vary in different parts of the country and it is possible that important issues related to your area may not be covered here.
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