About Our Inspections

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT OUR INSPECTIONS

 OUR PHILOSOPHY

You’ve found the perfect home, your Dream Home. Once you decide to purchase your home you’re emotionally attached to it. After all, it’s perfect, right?

Then comes the home inspection, one objective of which is to find deficiencies in your Dream Home. All homes have deficiencies so we will find some; count on it.

At Dream Home Consultants, we understand that finding deficiencies in your Dream Home can be troubling. That is why we use our professionalism, experience, knowledge, and independence to find major deficiencies and help you put them into perspective.

We hope that we find no major deficiencies in your Dream Home. If we do, you will probably wish to address them with the seller before you close on the home. Most deficiencies we find are minor and you may wish to address them after closing or monitor them for future action. We will work with you, and if you wish the agents and the sellers, to determine what is fair and reasonable.

Thank you for visiting our web site. Please invest a few minutes to learn more about us and our services. When you consider our extensive experience and knowledge of construction and building codes, our thoroughness and attention to detail, and our professionalism and commitment to client service, we hope you will agree that Dream Home Consultants is the best inspection value in the Triangle.

WHAT IS A HOME INSPECTION?

A home inspection is an observation of specific, readily accessible and observable systems and components as they exist in the home during the inspection. The objective of a home inspection is to identify most major deficiencies that require immediate major repair. We may report minor deficiencies that we encounter during our inspection, but we focus our efforts on finding major deficiencies that may cost you a significant amount of money and time or may present a significant safety hazard.

You should understand several important aspects of a home inspection.

  1. A home inspection is visual. If a deficiency is concealed under a floor, behind a wall, under insulation, behind or under owner belongings, or someplace else that we cannot see or access, we cannot report about it.
  2. A home inspection includes only readily accessible areas. Readily accessible means being available for observation without moving personal property, removing covers that are fastened in place, using inspection techniques that may damage property, and taking actions that may risk injuring persons (including the inspector) or damaging property.
  3. A home inspection reports on conditions during the inspection. Conditions change. A system or component that functions during the inspection may fail immediately after the inspection. This is especially true of intermittent deficiencies.
  4. A home inspection includes specific systems and components. Please refer to the Home Inspections page for a description of systems and components included in your home inspection.
  5. A home inspection focuses on finding most major deficiencies. We define a major deficiency as one that may cost more than $1,000 to repair when the repair is made by a qualified, licensed contractor or one that presents a significant threat of bodily injury during normal daily use.
  6. A home inspection reduces, but does not eliminate risk. Buying and owning a home means assuming the risk that unexpected and costly events will occur. A home inspection is only one part of your risk management strategy along with insurance and regular maintenance. A home inspection reduces, but does not eliminate, your risk that major deficiencies may exist on the property. It also reduces the risk of minor deficiencies, but because we do not focus on minor deficiencies, the risk reduction is much less for minor deficiencies.

WHAT IS EXCLUDED FROM MY HOME INSPECTION?

The following is a list of common systems, conditions, and components excluded from your home inspection. Please refer to our inspection agreement for more information about your home inspection scope and limitations.

  • Geological conditions and soil stability, such as expansive soils and fissures
  • Structural stability and engineering analysis
  • Termites and all other animal pests and toxic or poisonous plants
  • All environmental hazards, such as mold, Radon, noise, and air and water quality
  • Recreational facilities, such as swimming pools, spas, hot tubs, and play equipment
  • Water softeners, water filters, and hot water pumps
  • Private water and sewer systems, such as wells and septic tanks
  • Security systems and alarms, such as smoke and carbon monoxide alarms
  • Low voltage and signal distribution systems, such as telephone, cable TV, computer wiring, audio wiring, intercoms, and low voltage lighting
  • Window treatments, such as screens, blinds, shutters, and curtains
  • Fire sprinkler systems
  • Lawn irrigation systems
  • Refrigerators clothes washers, and clothes dryers
  • Floor coverings, wall coverings, and interior finishes such as paint

DO YOU PERFORM TERMITE INSPECTIONS?

No. We look for signs of termites during our inspection and we’ll tell you if see signs, but we are also looking for hundreds of other things. We believe it is better for you to use an experienced and licensed pest control contractor that regularly performs termite inspections and can concentrate on that one important task. We can recommend termite inspectors that you can hire and pay separately.

HOW LONG WILL MY HOME INSPECTION TAKE?

The time required to conduct a thorough home inspection depends on the age and condition of the home, the size of the home, and the type of foundation on which the home is constructed. A newer home with less than 2,000 square feet of conditioned space and a crawlspace foundation usually takes about 3 hours to inspect. Most homes require between 2 1/2 and 4 hours to conduct our thorough inspection. Older homes and homes in poor condition can require significantly more time. Larger homes require more time as do homes on crawl space foundations.

WHEN WILL I RECEIVE MY INSPECTION REPORT?

Our narrative inspection reports with embedded pictures can take several hours to produce. We believe that our inspection report should be as thorough and professional as our inspection. Because we take great care and pride in our reports, we do not provide on-site reports.

Reports from a morning inspection are usually ready for email delivery by the end of the same day. Please let us know when you schedule the inspection if report delivery is time critical.

WHAT WILL MY INSPECTION REPORT LOOK LIKE?

Your inspection report is a full narrative report with embedded pictures. The full report usually contains between 30 and 40 pages. The summary report, presenting findings that may require immediate attention, usually contains between 5 and 10 pages. We present our report in a professional binder.

As Chair of the ASHI national Standards of Practice Committee, we are careful to ensure that our reports comply with ASHI and North Carolina Standards. Each finding presents a description of the situation or problem, a brief explanation of the potential risk that the situation or problem may present, and a recommendation about how we believe you should address the situation or problem. In some cases, we also include a description of the current accepted construction standard upon which we base our finding.

Sample Report to view a sample report

HOW DO I PAY FOR MY HOME INSPECTION?

Please have cash or a check available at the end of the inspection. Sorry, we do not accept credit cards and we do not carry the inspection fee to closing.

HOW DO I SCHEDULE MY HOME INSPECTION?

Please call the office to schedule an inspection. We usually answer the phone every day between 8 AM and 9 PM Eastern Time. If we do not answer, please leave a message. We will return your call, usually within a few minutes and almost always within a few hours.

We perform inspections every day, including Saturday and Sunday. We can usually schedule an inspection with two days advance notice, and sometimes with less notice. Please call us as soon as possible after you sign a purchase contract so that we can schedule your inspection within the inspection period.

When you call to schedule your inspection, please have the following information ready:

  • Client name(s),
  • Client contact information including phone numbers and email,
  • Address of the home to be inspected including zip code and street name (Street, Avenue, Lane, etc.). The exact street name is important,
  • Builder name, subdivision name, lot number, and builder contact information (if new construction),
  • Name and contact information of the client’s real estate agent, if any,
  • Report delivery method (email, postal mail, client pick-up),
  • Home description including:
    • conditioned square footage,
    • year home was built,
    • foundation type (slab, crawl space, basement),
    • pool or spa on property,
    • barn, storage shed, or other attached or detached building on property

HOW CAN I HELP ENSURE A COMPLETE INSPECTION?

We want to provide you with the thorough and complete inspection you deserve. Please help us by ensuring that the following tasks are complete prior to the inspection.

  1. Confirm that access to the home has been arranged by the seller or agent.
  2. Confirm that all utilities (gas, electricity, water) are on and that appliances such as water heaters and furnaces are functioning and ready for inspection. Utilities are frequently off at foreclosure properties and may require one to three business days for the utility to turn them on. We can’t perform a thorough inspection without all utilities on.
  3. Confirm that locks have been unlocked or removed from gates, doors, electrical panels, and detached buildings.
  4. Confirm that a clear path exists to, under, and around the water heater, furnace(s), electrical panel(s), and all attic and crawl space access openings. Remove pictures, furniture, storage shelves, or owner belongings that block access to any of these appliances or openings.
  5. Confirm that any animals will be removed or restrained.
  6. Confirm that builder forms and requirements have been communicated to us so we can comply with builder requirements.