HOME INSPECTION DAY
June 20, 2011
Ok, soo we had our home inspection a few weeks ago. Now here's the skinny. Our home inspector, the incredible Brian, was amazing. He had the dry sarcastic kind of humor that Vadim and I both needed for what was about to go down. We just didn't know it yet. We arrived at the house right on time and had a team of people waiting for us there. Our realtor, Vanessa was there with our home inspector, oil tank inspector and termite inspector. Thank GOD no oil tank was found underneath our property. This could have caused us a world of problems. If there is a oil tank found anywhere on the property that has not been removed, you basically can't sell the house. Oil tanks that were put under the ground years ago have been known to leak and therefore spilling toxic materials into the ground and in effect in the water. So, this inspection is CRUCIAL when you are buying a home. You can be stuck with thousands of dollars worth of damage if it isn't taken care of. If the people you are buying a home from swear up and down that there is no oil tank underground on your property, that doesn't mean anything. They might have had a bad inspector that missed it. Get your own people and make sure it's not there. It's worth the $200 you spend and any future ulcers.
Our termite guy found damage in the back of the house. I wish I had taken pictures of this. It was pretty interesting. Termite damage is serious and needs to be fixed immediatly. Your lender will need proof that it was fixed by a licensed contractor otherwise you will not be able to buy the house. I'm telling you these banks are NOT kidding around. Trust me, we will get into that in detail later. I've given them everything they want to see besides my first born child, a sample of DNA and my first grade report card. These guys are so f**king ridiculous. Ugh, ok sorry. Onto the next.
I had talked to Brian, our home inspector, on the phone two weeks prior to having our home inspection. He seemed very cool and thorough. He has been in the business with his father for years and he made me feel very comfortable about what was going to be done on this day. He also arranged for the termite and oil inspector guy to come all at once which saved me a lot of phone calls. Once we all met, we started outside the property first.
I wish I had the pictures to pull from my home inspection report but for some reason I couldn't pull them out of the report. I'm using sample pictures instead from the Internet to give you an idea.
Brian said "Well....we have some issues....". Oh no! My heart sank. He handed us a pair of binoculars and told us to look at the chimney on top of our house. At first glance you would think nothing was wrong with it until you looked through some binoculars. Yup, it was falling over and falling apart! He told us that would probably cost around $5000-8000 in repairs and up. Hmm...great way to start our inspection off!
He then looked at the outdoor area of our basement including where there was termite damage. The storm doors needed to be replaced since they were rotting away and the stairs leading down to the basement from the yard were crumbling. We knew this when we came to visit the house the first time so it's not like we were surprised or anything. Water had been leaking down to the basement and causing a lot of build up so we had been prepared to replaced the doors. The stairs we didn't realize were falling apart. With one quick flick of his screw driver on the sides of the concrete stairs, they started to crumble. Basically this was a hot mess that wasn't going to fall apart right away, but that we needed to fix. Eh no big deal. Now on to the basement.
Long story short, we have the following issues:
Possible Knob and Tube wiring evident in the house
Stairs separating...oh yes I'm not kidding...
Holy crap. Are you f**king serious? Brian said this was not the usual kind of inspection for first time home buyers but we are buying a 100 year old house, so these problems were normal. The problem was either the home owner or the previous owner did not take care of these problems and now they were at the point where if they weren't taken care of, the house could be in trouble.
The beams supporting the house were cracking. This wood that was used in 1907 to build this house is probably 100 years OLDER than the house itself. So we are actually talking about 200 plus year old wood. Yeah, these babies need to be replaced. If they weren't, the house could collapse at some point in time.
example of what cracked joists look like...ours was not as severe...but in time it would be
The house was built on a brick foundation. Now, I loveee me some bricks, but since moisture seeps through bricks underground there is erosion issues. Back in the day, they used a mixture of limestone to bind the bricks together and create a strong foundation. Well, the moisture got to the point where the limestone started to erode and when it gets wet, it turns to sand. So you can imagine when Brian stuck his screw driver between two bricks on the wall, it went SIX INCHES IN! Not good.
They had much work to be done on the foundation of the house. He reminded me all this was fixable but had to be done. We kept thinking "Oh god, the sellers are gonna freak when they hear about all this!" Oh but wait! We were NOT done! Besides leaks and some rotting wood we came to the grand finale. The steps. Remember those pictures from earlier blogs of our gorgeous winding three story amazing stair case? Well, we had a problem. The stairs were separating. Now I don't have a picture of the staircase and couldn't find a good example of it online. Basically, underneath the stairs you can see that the slats of wood are coming apart. The stairs are very creaky which is normal for an old house but they also bend really easily. Now, imagine four stories (including basement) of stairs up and down dozens of times a day times 100 plus years times 200 old year wood being used in those stairs and NO repairs = serious major problem. Brian deemed the stairs unsafe. Basically anytime one or two or maybe all of them could cave in. There was no way of knowing other than hiring someone to come in and take a look at them. Oh boy. What a messsss!!!!
Then last but NOT least...Brian found evidence of knob and tube wiring in this house. More on that next and what else happened. Gotta get my hair done and do two shows but I promise this is gonna get even better!!!