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How to Look

at a House

A blog with answers
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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.

exploration around a small area of damaged wood in a door frame can lead to twelve feet of wall replacement. Termite-sucked wood is sponge-like, has lost  its structural integrity, and crushes when probed.

   The only way to know for sure is to open up the wall. While it is possible to get a limited idea of the what’s going on with a borescope, which requires only a small hole punched in to wall to examine each area, it does not always provide a good image. Also, insulation in the wall cavity can make borescope examination impossible.

   Not all sellers are willing to have an invasive inspection done and you may have to walk away and start looking for another home. Even when wall exploration is allowed, an agreement has to be reached by both sides of the deal as to who is responsible for what expenses related to the probing, possible structural repair, and wallboard replacement at completion. Your realtor can negotiate the terms for you.

   We recommend that you insist on being allowed to view the exploratory area while it is still open. A couple of digital photos and the assurance that “my contractor says there was really no damage that needed repair” is not acceptable.

   To see an extreme example of how much damage can be hiding behind a wall with only minor evidence of termites showing in the baseboard, see our blog “I saw a little termite damage on the baseboard. Should I be concerned?”

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.
©2015 - McGarry and Madsen Inspection.

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