You can’t just ignore a good home inspection if you have the intentions of buying or selling a property anytime soon or in the far future or simply want to keep your home safe for you and your family’s sake. One of the things often overlooked by homeowners is the crawl space. A home inspector may see a problem with it even if it appears fine to the untrained eye.
In reality, a lot of realtors can confirm this trend since it can affect how quickly or slowly they can close a sale. As soon as this “red flag” is identified, the homeowner has no choice but to hire the services of a crawl space cleaning expert or a professional from an insulation or pest control company in order to move on with the sale.
Finding faults in one’s crawl space is actually done in good measure because a lot of things can go wrong when it is left unattended. It is why home inspectors won’t hesitate in calling out much-needed repairs and upgrades whenever necessary. Homeowners often freak out why home inspectors make a big deal out of the crawl space when they themselves don’t realize what the problem with it is since they rarely check it out. Even if you are a conscientious homeowner and are diligent in checking every nook and cranny of your home, you may not always realize what the problem in your crawl space is when you are clueless about it yourself.
Getting everything checked on your crawl space now is a great way to save yourself from bigger (and more costly) home problems later on. Don’t miss out on the chance to have your home routinely inspected if you have plans of selling your home in the future.
Read on if you notice any need for a crawl space inspection or better yet a maintenance but do not have an idea what to do first. You will learn what you need to know about a crawl space inspection.
The Purpose of a Crawl Space Inspection
An inspection is conducted to find out the state of your crawl space and discover any potential problem before it worsens. The following signs are what an inspector usually looks for during a crawl space inspection:
- The presence of termites. Inspectors are on the lookout for signs of termites starting to burrow or for more obvious signs of their presence.
- Signs of moisture damage. The experts will watch out for signs of cracked or warped materials, condensation, or any damp insulation.
- The presence of mold and mildew. A musty smell is usually an indicator of mold and mildew growing on the walls or on stuff you stored in the attic.
- Electrical or plumbing issues.
- The floor frames’ condition as well as the condition of the wooden supports.
- The presence of vermin, pests, and other animals or any signs of damage they have caused.
- The condition of the vents and how good the ventilation is.
- The quality and presence of vapor barriers.
In a nutshell, these are some of the things an inspector will look out for during a crawl space inspection but they can also include other factors or warning signs that can affect the condition of your crawl space in the long run. It is more practical to bring in a plumber or an electrician during the inspection so they can double-check and fix potential plumbing and electrical issues.
What happens during a crawl space inspection?
Prior to starting the inspection, the inspector needs to find out first if he can fit and crawl in it. They may need to reschedule if they identify any obstructions like a cramped space and a low ductwork that can interfere with their work. A 24” width and 18” crawl space entry is usually what most inspectors require for a smooth inspection but more may be required by some.
Safety is their next concern after determining that they can get into the crawl space. For instance, an inspector may hesitate going inside if they smell something musty inside, the presence of standing water, unsafe electrical wirings, or exposed screws or nails are hazards they don’t want to meddle with. Not only that but it is an automatic fail for the inspection when it happens.
Why it’s Practical to have an Inspection
It is usually an SOP for most realtors to have your crawl space inspected in order to determine a fair price for your property once you decide to sell your home. If they don’t require it from you, the buyer may ask for that before finalizing the sale. Avoid this last-minute hassle by getting it done early on and have it ticked off your to-do list.
Whether you have plans of selling your home or not, it is a good idea to have every part of your home checked because you can save time and money having the problem addressed early on then wait for it to get worse over time. For instance, you’ll have a chance to fix a water leak in your crawl space and prevent any overgrowth of mold and mildew in that cramped space if the leak is discovered earlier. If not, your home’s foundation may weaken if the problem is not fixed in time.
Cleaning the Crawl Space
After a crawl space inspection, reach out to experts for crawl space cleaning, repair, or pest control. After speaking with a contractor, owner, Chuck Henrichsen shared his thoughts:
“My friend is a general contractor. I got a call from him last week regarding a homeowner he recently worked with. The owner of the house asked for an inspection and he was surprised to find out that his crawl space and attic was in a bad shape even if he thinks otherwise.
That’s when it hit him that his standards of what’s acceptable regarding the state of his home aren’t always at par with that of a home inspector. The advantage of having your home pre-inspected is for you to know what needs to be fixed in your home before even putting it up on the market.“