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Home Alone

house whisperer
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Hey everyone welcome back and Happy New Year! I’m hoping that 2016 brings you good health, blessings and wealth. Oh yeah, in the ongoing tradition, I want to wish you a Happy Friday as well. If your New Year is going to be bringing you the blessing of a new home, today’s post is directed towards you, the new home buyer, and today I want to discuss the importance of having an in depth home inspection.

As you know, I am regularly crawling around in attics and if I had a dollar for every time I heard, “The home inspection report didn’t say anything about that!” I would probably be sitting on a beach somewhere rather than typing away for your enjoyment and education. That said, I have nothing against home inspection services, they serve a purpose and give new home buyers some sense of what they are getting into when considering purchasing a house. The issue that I have with most of the inspection service reports that I have seen is they do not go into depth, especially when it comes to the plumbing and air distribution systems in the home.

Let’s talk plumbing first. If the home you are considering was built before 1972, there is a very high probability that the sewer system is constructed of cast iron pipe. Cast iron pipe has a typical life span of 40-50 years and is by far one of the most costly systems to replace. Home inspectors can give you the rundown of the visible plumbing fixtures in the home and the age of the water heater, etc. What they can’t give you is the condition of the sewer system under the home. The only way to truly know what you are in for in an older home is to have a camera inspection of the sewer system. The costs for a sewer system replacement can easily top $20,000 depending on the size of the home and the $250 you’ll spend to get a camera inspection can be priceless.

Moving on to the air conditioning side of the program, again the typical home inspection is going to give you the age of the equipment, possibly the condition of the indoor coil, and any visible “on-the-surface” flaws. When it comes to the ductwork, most of the time I find that many inspectors pop up into the attic and say, “Yup, there’s a duct system”. Again, I am making a generalization that is not true of all inspections or inspectors, however I have found over the years the home inspection services don’t look at things like the condition of the duct system, and possible comfort issues in the home due to airflow problems or lack of returns.

Again, not slamming home inspectors, they are jacks-of-all trades, but as the old saying goes, they are masters of none. Things like thermal cameras, blower door testing, and flow hoods are just a few of the tools we bring to the table to do an in-depth analysis of your homes air distribution system. The costs for these type of tests ranges from $69 for a basic AC exam to $399 for a full blown test of the entire home.

So as a recap, if this new year is bringing you a new home, you may want to give us a call at 1-800-475-1504, visit , or drop me an email at and let the plumbing and air conditioning specialists give you the full rundown of the most crucial and expensive systems in your potential new home.

House Whisperer out!!


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