Nearly every home inspection—even those on new homes—will turn up some issues.

Almost ⅓ of my inspections are on new homes

It is important to pick your battles when it comes to repairs requested from a home inspection. There are only so many repairs most sellers are willing to commit to – especially in a seller’s market and/or during short inventory

Things to let go

  • Under $100. Let it go

    • Things under $100, in general, are deferred maintenance unless it is a major safety issue or greatly diminishes the functionality of the Home
  • Things on the Sellers Disclosure

    • If the seller disclosed it, it is inappropriate to ask for it to be fixed because the Inspector also found it. The buyer knew about it before the inspection.
  • Things the Buyer and Agent noticed

    • If you know about it it should be taken into account on the original offer
  • Detached Structures

    • Sheds, Detached Garages and so on. They are not normally included in a home inspection unless stated
  • Cosmetic Issues

    • A deck needs staining, touching up paint, so on.
  • Crack In Basement Floor

    • The cracks are purely aesthetic. In fact, if you are purchasing a home that doesn’t have a few cracks you’re lucky.


  • Major foundation issues

    • Foundation issues are a huge undertaking to repair and it tops the list of home-buying deal breakers
  • Radon Tests High (and no mitigation)

    • Radon needs to be in the guidelines set forth by the EPA. Eliminating this risk is easy through professional mitigation
  • Asbestos

    • Unless disturbed, asbestos isn’t usually problematic.  Asbestos insulation around pipes that is friable [crumbling] is a serious health issue and should be remediated prior to closing.
  • Aluminum wiring

    • If your potential home has it, it could mean big trouble.
  • Buried oil tanks

    • Before electrical heating came along, some homes had oil tanks buried in the backyard to funnel fuel to the house during winter.
  • Polybutylene plumbing pipes

    • These pipes had their heyday as a cheap alternative to copper in the ’80s, but it didn’t last long.
  • Upgrades without permits

    • It can be a very bad thing if the homeowner in charge had a DIY streak and a problem with authority.
  • Major Structural Issues

    • A leaking roof or substantial building violations.

1. Faulty or missing raingutters—clogged or bent gutters, water not channeled away from house.

  • The cure: Preventive maintenance; gutters of adequate size, splash pans to divert run-off
  1. Raingutters are not there to keep ice from forming on your walkway  They are critical to getting the water away from the foundation and will prolong the life of the home

2. Faulty wiring—open junction boxes, amperage mismatches, no wire nuts on wires, double taps.

  • The cure: Fix junction boxes; upgrade to at least 100 amps
  1. Homeowner upgrades are the most common things needing to be corrected, sticking another wire on a circuit breaker for some plugs in the basement seems like no big deal, but it can be if not done correctly

3. Poor grading and drainage—spongy soil around the foundation, signs of leaking in basement.

  • The cure: Regrade so that grounds slopes away from house for 10 feet; remove porous material around foundation.
  1. This goes a long way to the gutters not being installed or installed incorrectly. Did you know planters built up against the house can cause huge problems as well?

4. Basement dampness—water stains, powdery residue on walls, mold or mildew.

  • The cure: Repair gutters to channel water away from house; apply waterproof coatings to basement.
  1. Welcome to Montana, easily the greatest state in the nation and we love our water playgrounds. Just not in the house or under it

5. Roof problems—brittle or curled shingles; broken or missing flashings.

  • The cure: Apply new shingle, or tear off if needed (usually after three re-roofs ); replacing flashings, especially around chimneys and other protrusions.
  1. Notice that most things here are comming back to water getting into, under, or around things you dont want it too?

6. Foundation flaws—cracks in foundation, sloping floors, sticking doors or windows.

  • The cure: Fill cracks with silicon caulking or epoxy; apply waterproof coating to exterior.
  1. Water again, water is a powerful force, after all it did create the Grand Canyon

7. Poor upkeep—needs repainting, worn carpeting, cracked driveway.

  • The cure: Give the house a minor facelift.
  1. Good old fashioned wear and tear

8. Faulty plumbing—inadequate water pressure, slow drains, signs of leaks on ceilings.

  • The cure: Clean and rout drains; reseat toilet with new wax ring, repair leaks.
  1. Water?

9. Poor ventilation—extreme heat in attic, vapor condensation.

  • The cure: Ensure that roof soffits are not blocked; install additional roof vents; vent bathroom and kitchen fans outside.
  1. Ice Dams (frozen water) is caused by too little insulation and too little ventilation in the Attic. Heat tape is not a cure, it is a bandaid. The idea is to keep the attic cool and not melt the snow agains the roof in the first place. Ad Insulation and increase ventilation to cure ise dams

10. Defective heating—cracks in the heat exchanger or water tank; carbon monoxide leaks.

  • The cure: Reseal chimney flues; replace sacrificial anode in water heater.
  1. Hmm No water jokes come to mind but it water again

Robin Patrick 2019

406 Home Inspection Pros

What Should My Water Pressure Be?

Residential water pressure tends to range between 45 and 80 psi (pounds per square inch). Anything below 40 psi is considered low and anything below 30 psi is considered too low; the minimum pressure required by most codes is 20 psi. Pressures above 80 psi are too high. Whereas low water pressure is more of a nuisance than a serious problem (some fixtures, like washing machines, have minimum pressure requirements), high water pressure carries with it a significantly increased risk of damage to pipes, joints, fixtures and seals – not to mention increased water waste.

How Do You Measure and Correct Water Pressure?         

Water pressure can be easily measured and monitored with a simple, inexpensive water pressure gauge that threads onto any hose bibb. “Lazy hand” gauges feature an additional high-level indicator, which remains stuck at the highest pressure experienced until the gauge is reset. This type of gauge can let you know if you’re experiencing any spikes of high pressure, which can also cause problems.

To reduce high pressure in a home, you’ll need a Pressure Reducing Valve (PRV). In fact, these are often required by code for pressures beyond 80 psi. These devices do exactly what they say, reducing pressures of up to 400 psi down to a reasonable level of your choosing (most are factory set at 45 psi).