Website: http://www.eyespyhomeinspection.com
Email: mike@eyespyhomeinspection.com
Phone: (631) 275-5999
FAX: (516) 740-5814
80 Old Brook Rd. 
Dix Hills, New York 11746
Inspector: Michael Shain

 

Home Inspection Report
Client(s): xxxxxxxxxxxx xxxxxxxxxxxx
Property address: xxxxx xxxxx Street
Old Bethpage, New York 11804
Inspection date: Friday, May 19, 2006
This report published on 5/23/2006 9:22:22 AM EDT

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This report is the exclusive property of this inspection company and the client(s) listed in the report title. Use of this report by any unauthorized persons is prohibited.


How to Read this Report
This report is organized by the property's functional areas. Within each functional area, descriptive information is listed first and shown in bold type. Items of concern follow descriptive information and are shown as follows:
SafetyPoses a risk of injury or death 
Major defectCorrection likely involves a significant expense 
Repair/ReplaceRecommend repairing or replacing 
Repair/MaintainRecommend repair and/or maintenance 
Minor defectCorrection likely involves only a minor expense 
MaintainRecommend ongoing maintenance 
EvaluateRecommend evaluation by a specialist 
MonitorRecommend monitoring in the future 
ServiceableItem or component is in servicable condition 
CommentFor your information 
Concern items are sorted by the types listed above.  Click here for a glossary of building construction terms.  Contact your inspector if there are terms that you do not understand, or visit the glossary of construction terms at http://www.reporthost.com/glossary.asp

Table of Contents
General information
Exterior
Roof
Garage
Attic
Electric service
Water heater
Heating and cooling
Plumbing and laundry
Fireplaces, woodstoves and chimneys
Basement
Kitchen
Bathrooms
Interior rooms


General information Return to table of contents  
Report number: 51920061A
Type of building: Single family
Age of building: 54
Time started: 4:00 P.M.
Time finished: 630 P.M.
Inspection Fee: 450.00
Payment method: Check
Present during inspection: Client(s), Property owner(s)
Occupied: Yes
Weather conditions: Partly cloudy
Temperature: 62 Degrees
Ground condition: Damp
Front of structure faces: North, East
Main entrance faces: North East
Foundation type: Part unfinished basement, partlal finished, poured concrete
The following items are excluded from this inspection: Security system, Irrigation system, Shed, Low voltage outdoor lighting, Water filtration system
1) Structures built prior to 1979 may contain lead-based paint and/or asbestos in various building materials such as insulation, siding, and/or floor and ceiling tiles. Both lead and asbestos are known health hazards. Evaluating for the presence of lead and/or asbestos is not included in this inspection. For information on lead, asbestos and other hazardous materials in homes, visit my link page on the Eye Spy's web site or click here.
  • The Environmental Protection Association (http://www.epa.gov)
  • The Consumer Products Safety Commission (http://www.cpsc.gov)
  • The Center for Disease Control (http://www.cdc.gov)
  • 2) Many wall, floor and/or ceiling surfaces in the basement were obscured by large amounts of furniture and/or stored items. Many areas couldn't be evaluated.

    Photo 49  
    Basement filled with storage

    Photo 51  

    Photo 52  
     
     
    Exterior Return to table of contents  
    Foundation material: Poured in place concrete
    Apparent wall structure: Wood frame
    Wall covering: Aluminum siding front sides and back. The front bottom half was brick.
    Driveway material: Asphalt
    Sidewalk material: Poured in place concrete
    Exterior door material: Front door is metal insulated. Side and back doors are wood with glass panels
    3) The outside flood light electric receptacles and/or the box they are installed in are loose and/or not securely anchored. Wire conductors may be damaged due to repeated movement and/or tension on wires, or insulation may be damaged. This is a safety hazard due to the risk of shock and fire. A qualified electrician should evaluate and repair as necessary.

    Photo 19  
    Outside Light needs to be resecured to house
     
    4) Stairs with more than two risers are required to have handrails installed. This is a safety hazard. A qualified contractor should install graspable handrails that your hand can completely encircle at stairs where missing, and as per standard building practices.

    Photo 25  
    Front stoop should have handrails installed
     
    5) One or more open ground, two and three-pronged electric receptacles were found. Also outside outlets should be GFCI type outlets. This is a safety hazard due to the risk of shock. A qualified electrician should evaluate and make repairs as necessary. For example, replacing receptacles and if necessary correcting wiring circuits.

    Grounding type receptacles began being required in residential structures during the 1960s. Based on the age of this structure and the presence of 2-pronged receptacles in some areas of this structure, an acceptable repair may be to simply replace the ungrounded 3-pronged receptacles with 2-pronged receptacles. However the following appliances require grounding type receptacles:

  • Computer hardware
  • Refrigerators
  • Freezers
  • Air conditioners
  • Clothes washers
  • Clothes dryers
  • Dishwashers
  • Kitchen food waste disposer
  • Information technology equipment
  • Sump pumps
  • Electrical aquarium equipment
  • Hand-held motor-operated tools
  • Stationary and fixed motor-operated tools
  • Light industrial motor-operated tools
  • Hedge clippers
  • Lawn mowers

    This list is not exhaustive. Grounded circuits and receptacles should be installed in locations where such appliances will be used.

    Photo 16  
    No GFCI .

    Photo 18  
    No GFCI
  • 6) There's a gap around the exterior sprinkler supply pipe where it penetrates the exterior. Gaps should be sealed as necessary to prevent moisture intrusion , heat lose and entry by vermin.

    Photo 15  
    Insulate /caulk around sprinkler main pipe.
     
    7) Soffit boards are damaged or deteriorated in one or more areas. A qualified contractor should evaluate and make repairs as necessary. If cosmetics are a major concern the soffit material can easily be replaced or the holes can simply be filled with white caulking and a few white aluminum siding nails can be used to secure the sagging soffit.

    Photo 5  
    Soffit holes are a result of prior basketball hoop setup
     
    8) One or more downspouts have no extensions, or have extensions that are ineffective. This can result in water accumulating around the structures foundation, or in basements and crawl spaces if they exist. Accumulated water is a conducive condition to wood destroying insects and organisms, and may also cause the foundation to settle and possibly fail over time. Repairs should be made as necessary, such as installing or repositioning splash blocks, or installing and/or repairing tie-ins to underground drain lines, so rain water is carried at least several feet away from the structure to soil that slopes down and away from the structure.

    Photo 22  
    Downspout is directed at foundation
     
    9) Minor cracks were found in the driveway. However they don't appear to be a structural concern and no trip hazards were found. The client(s) may wish to have repairs made so the cracked areas do not widen. It is common with asphalt driveways to develop cracks with age. During the winter as water enters these cracks it freezes and could further deteriorate the driveway. Periodic resealing the driveway could slow down the deterioration of asphalt driveways.

    Photo 2  
    Cracking of Driveway

    Photo 3  
    Multiple cracks in driveway
    10) Vegetation such as trees, shrubs and/or vines are in contact with or less than one foot from the structures exterior. Vegetation can serve as a conduit for wood destroying insects and may retain moisture against the exterior after it rains. Vegetation should be pruned and/or removed as necessary to maintain a one foot clearance between it and the structures exterior.

    Photo 14  
    Ivy around foundation should be removed. It will run under the siding.
     
    11) Minor repair to the garage door capping is needed. Simple bending an aluminum nail and some caulking should solve this minor issue.

    Photo 4  
    Minor repairs and caulking needed around garage door capping
     
    12) Trees that overhang the roof area can cause all kinds of problems. They clog gutters. Leave debris on the roof area and in the channels. Branches that can fall off or scrape the roof can cause damage to the shingles. They also provide a conduit or access path for insects and rodents. Trimming or pruning this tree is a cheap and very effective maintainance issue which will prevent a host of future problems.

    Photo 12  
    Negative pitch of yard toward platform and home

    Photo 21  
    Roof of house is Architectural Fiberglass Asphalt tiles. Valleys at rear collect debris from overhanging tree.
    13) Window glazing putty at one or more windows is missing and/or deteriorated. Putty should be replaced and/or installed where necessary. For more information on replacing window putty, visit: http://www.oldhouseweb.com/stories/Detailed/12216.shtml
    The window area should be kept free from debris. The window should be scraped and painted. The exhaust from the dryer exists this window area. I would prefer to see the dryer vent exit the base of the house just above the sill plate in the basement. Then the window can be properly sealed and a storm window can be installed.

    Photo 17  
    Rear basement window needs to be cleaned of Debris and re-caulked and painted.
     
    14) The back yard grading slopes towards the structure in one or more areas. This can result in water accumulating around the structures foundation, or in basements and crawl spaces. Accumulated water is a conducive condition to wood destroying insects and organisms. Wet soil may also cause the foundation to settle and possibly fail over time. Although the house is 50+ years old and the foundation and basement shows no major cracks or water infiltration we recommend grading soil so it slopes down and away from the structure with a slope of at least 5% (10% or better is optimal) for at least 6 feet. The back yard slope could be aided by installing french drains underground to divert water away from structure if it ever becomes an issue.

    Photo 12  
    Negative pitch of yard toward platform and home

    Photo 23  
    Negative pitch of rear yard toward foundation
    15) Minor cracks were found in one or more sidewalk. However they don't appear to be a structural concern and no trip hazards were found. No immediate action is recommended.
    16) The substructure of the deck/platform is excluded from the inspection due to limited access because of the low height. This platform was built on top of an existing cement platform.. The platform is of limited height and requires no rails. It has been treated with a solid satin stain which generally has a 5- 10 year life span.The finish was in excellent condition. My only concern was where the facia board of the platform was in contact with the soil.. Rot is accelerated when even treated wood is in contact with soil. This is not a structural but a cosmetic issue with this facia board.

    Photo 10  
    Rear platform has contact with the dirt. Not ideal conditions.
     
     
    Roof Return to table of contents  
    Roof inspection method: Traversed, Viewed from eaves on ladder, Viewed from ground with binoculars
    Roof type: Gable
    Roof covering: Asphalt or fiberglass composition shingles
    Estimated age of roof: Less then 2 years.
    Gutter & downspout material: Aluminum
    Roof ventilation: Gable and Ridge vents. Excellent ventilation.
    17) Two sections of roof surfaces are sloped towards each other. Debris such as leaves or needles are more likely to accumulate in this area than rest of the roof. Leaks may occur as a result. Recommend monitoring such areas for accumulated debris in the future and cleaning as necessary.

    Photo 21  
    Roof of house is Architectural Fiberglass Asphalt tiles. Valleys at rear collect debris from overhanging tree.
     
    18) Debris has accumulated in the rear gutters. This is a conducive condition for wood destroying insects since gutters may overflow and cause water to come in contact with the structuring exterior or make water accumulate around the foundation. Gutters should be cleaned now and as necessary in the future.
    19) Trees are overhanging roof and are within 10 feet of roof vertically. This is a conducive condition for wood destroying insects and organisms since organic debris such as leaves or needles are more likely to accumulate on the roof surface. Accumulated debris may cause water to enter gaps in the roof surface and leak into attic and/or interior spaces. Trees should be pruned so they are at least 10 feet above roof, or don't overhang the roof.
    20) The roof was recently replaced. A total tear off and a 25 year fiberglass architectural tab shingle installed. The owner has the receipt for the work done. Check to see if the warranty is transferable. An ice dam membrane and total ridge vent were installed. This is the recommended procedure. Regardless of its design life every roof is only as good as the waterproof membrane installed underneath it. This is concealed and cannot be examined unless the roof was torn off. Only the installer can guarantee that a roof will not leak and they do. We can not give such guarantees. We will examine every roof, evaluate it, and attempt to give you an informative accurate description of its condition. This roof showed no signs of leakage as examened in the attic and inside sheetrock. The roof did not show any waves or granule deterioration. As stated the roof looked basically new. You can call in a roofing company and inquire about a comprehensive roof coverage or roof certification.
    21) Asphalt or tar sealant has been used on the metal flashing around the chimney. There were no visible leakage from in the attic that I could see around where the chimney is attached to the house. Many contractors apply this tar around the flashing as a protective measure. This is not a standard building practice that I recommend since it can trap moisture between the metal and the sealant.
     
    Garage Return to table of contents  
    22) Safety containment cables are missing for one or more vehicle door springs. This is a safety hazard. Safety containment cables prevent springs from snapping free and causing damage or injury. A qualified contractor should evaluate and make repairs or replace components as necessary. For more information on garage door safety issues, visit: http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/pubs/523.html or http://www.ohdstl.com/safety.html
    23) There was no ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) electric receptacles installed in the garage. The existing outlet should be replaced .This is a safety hazard due to the risk of shock. A qualified electrician should evaluate and repair as necessary.
    24) No infared "photo eye" devices are installed for the vehicle door's electric door opener. They've been required on all vehicle door openers since 1993 and improve safety by triggering the vehicle door's auto-reverse feature without need for the door to come in contact with the object, person or animal that's preventing it from closing. Recommend considering having a qualified contractor install these devices for improved safety. For more information on garage door safety issues, visit: http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/pubs/523.html or http://www.ohdstl.com/safety.html
    25) No hatch is installed over the attic access opening. A one-hour, fire-rated hatch should be installed to slow or prevent the spread of fire from the attached garage to interior living spaces. Typically these hatches are made from 5/8 inch Type X sheetrock.
    26) The single car attached garage has no entrance to the house. The garage door was metal, insulated with an electric door opening device. The door worked as it is intended. The reverse mechanism performed correctly. No cables were installed in the return springs nor were there electric eyes at the base of the door. These items are required today as safety items and may not have been required at the time of installation of this garage door opener. See comments below for further information.The outside right hand jam of the garage door has many cosmetic dents and scratches on the surface.

    Photo 24  
    Metal insulated garage door. Side trim is a bit banged up
     
    27) The rear of the garage are excluded from this inspection due to lack of access from stored items.
     
    Attic Return to table of contents  
    Inspection method: Traversed
    Roof structure type: Rafters
    Ceiling structure: Ceiling beams
    Insulation material: Fiberglass roll or batt
    Insulation estimated R value: R-19
    28) The ceiling insulation's R rating is R-19. With the cost of energy today I would recommend that additional insulation be installed. Your return on investment (ROI) should be realized in a very short period of time. I would recommend having a qualified contractor install additional insulation as per standard building practices for better energy efficiency.
    29) The attic was accessible through the garage. The attic showed to have adequate ventilation. No visible active signs of water leakage or past leakage were found during the time of this inspection.
     
    Electric service Return to table of contents  
    Primary service type: Overhead
    Primary service overload protection type: Circuit breakers
    Service amperage (amps): 100
    Service voltage (volts): 120/240
    Location of main service switch: Basement south east wall.
    Location of main disconnect: Breaker at top of main service panel
    Service entrance conductor material: Copper
    System ground: Ground rod(s) in soil, Cold water supply pipes, Copper
    Main disconnect rating (amps): 100
    Branch circuit wiring type: Non-metallic sheathed, (BX) Armor clad
    Solid strand aluminum branch circuit wiring present: No
    30) The service entrance wire insulation is frayed and/or deteriorated. This type of wire has the grounding cable on the outside of the interior service entrance wires. The service entry cable does not appear to be compromised however the insulation over the grounding strands has deteriorated in one or more areas. A qualified electrician should evaluate and make repairs or replace wires as necessary.

    Photo 8  
    Wooden mast which supports the drip loop

    Photo 9  
    Service entrance cable has the grounding wire exposed.
    31) The service entrance wires have one or more loose points of where it is not properly caulked or enclosed in conduit. Water could enter this area of concern and find its way through the meter pan. This is a potential safety hazard. A qualified contractor or electrician should evaluate and make repairs as necessary.

    Photo 6  
    Service entrance cable needs to be repaired
     
    32) The service mast is wooden and old. A qualified electrician should evaluate and replace the mast or make repairs as necessary.

    Photo 8  
    Wooden mast which supports the drip loop

    Photo 9  
    Service entrance cable has the grounding wire exposed.
    33) The electric service to this property appears to be rated at substantially less than 200 amps. Although the 100 amp service is adequate at this time , if you make any significant improvements that require a larger amperage draw I would recommend having this situation upgraded. Refer to the meter pan notes and the SE cable feeding the pan further down. Over time budgeting for an upgraded electric service would be a wise investment. Consulting with a qualified electrician about upgrading to a 200 amp service and its benefits.
    34) The seal for the metal ring securing the electric meter to its base is missing or broken. The utility company installs these seals. Recommend consulting with the property owner(s) about this and/or contacting the utility company to have one reinstalled.

    Photo 7  
    Meter pan is missing the LIPA lock
     
    35) The main service panel cover couldn't be removed due to lack of access from stored items and/or debris. This panel wasn't fully evaluated. See picture above for basement.

    Photo 38  
    100 amp Murray electric panel

    Photo 39  
    100 amp service panel showing labeling.
     
    Water heater Return to table of contents  
    Estimated age: 20+
    Type: Tank
    Energy source: Oil
    Capacity (in gallons): 50
    Water temperature (degrees Fahrenheit): 130
    36) No drain line is installed for the temperature-pressure relief valve. This is a potential safety hazard due to the risk of scalding if someone is standing next to the water heater when the valve opens. A qualified plumber should install a drain line as per standard building practices. For example, extending to 6 inches from the floor, or routed so as to drain outside.
    37) The hot water temperature is greater than 120 degrees Fahrenheit. This is a safety hazard due to the risk of scalding. The thermostat should be adjusted so the water temperature doesn't exceed 120 degrees. For more information on scalding dangers, visit http://www.tap-water-burn.com/
    38) The estimated useful life for most water heaters is 8 to 12 years. This water heater according to the owner is 20 years old and may need replacing at any time. Although there were no visible leaks and the unit was operating at its intended function I would recommend budgeting for a replacement in the near future.

    Photo 40  
    20 year old water heater. surrounded by clutter
     
     
    Heating and cooling Return to table of contents  
    Estimated age: Original 50+
    Primary heating system energy source: Oil
    Primary heat system type: Baseboard
    Primary A/C energy source: Electric
    Primary Air conditioning type: Through wall units
    39) Because of the age and/or condition of this furnace we recommend that a qualified heating technician inspect the heat exchanger and perform a Carbon Monoxide test when it's serviced. According to the service tags attached to the unit this furnace has been serviced once a year by Meehan. I tested for carbon monoxide and found no elevated levels. I also tested the efficiency of the combustion gases and found that the unit was within range of older units. I would consider budgeting for a more efficient furnace and hot water supply system in the future. It is prudent to shop for these items during the off season and make an informed decision then if the unit fails during the middle of February on a 20 degree day and you are at the mercy of the only available contractor at that moment. This house has two zones and is a water baseboard system. The circulator pumps are showing significant corrosion and need to be evaluated.

    Photo 41  
    Circulator pumps for furnace are old and rusted

    Photo 42  
    Original 50+ year old oil fired furnace
    40) No combustible materials should be found less than six inches from the top and/or sides of the furnace, boiler or hot water heater.. Most manufacturers require at least a six inch clearance to these surfaces. If documentation cannot be found indicating that closer clearances are allowed, then this is a fire hazard. Combustible materials should then be moved, or repairs made by a qualified contractor, as necessary to maintain these clearances.
    41) No combustible materials should be found less than 24 inches from the front of the oil-fueled furnace or boiler. Most manufacturers require at least a 24 inch clearance from the front. If documentation cannot be found indicating that a closer clearance is allowed, then this is a fire hazard. Combustible materials should then be moved, or repairs made by a qualified contractor, as necessary to maintain this clearance.
    42) The house had 4 through the wall a/c units. All units when turned on operated as they were intended. No inordinate noises and all blew considerable cold air. I would recommend removing the filters and washing or replacing them periodically.
    43) The oil tank was a 275 gallon unit, metal and located in the basement. I could not get close enough to evaluate the tank for evidence of rust or corrosion due to the amount of storage materials in front of the unit. Generally storage tanks that are located in the interior are not as susceptible to rust and corrosion. During your pre closing examination would be a good time to have a heating contractor take a quick look.
     
    Plumbing and laundry Return to table of contents  
    Water pressure (psi): 42
    Location of main water shut-off valve: Northeast basement wall. Ball valve design
    Location of main water meter: Front Lawn
    Water service: Public
    Service pipe material: Copper
    Supply pipe material: Copper
    Vent pipe material: Cast iron
    Drain pipe material: Plastic, Cast iron, Copper
    Waste pipe material: Plastic, Cast iron, Copper
    44) The laundry sink is not anchored to the wall or floor. A qualified contractor should securely anchor the sink to the wall and/or floor to prevent damage to and leaks in the water supply and/or drain pipes due to the sink being moved.
    45) Stains were found in one or more sections of drain and/or waste pipes. Recommend monitoring these areas in the future, and if leaks are found, have a qualified plumber evaluate and repair as necessary. Alternatively, the client(s) may wish to have a qualified plumber evaluate now and repair if necessary.

    Photo 43  
    Waste line above laundry area slight staining

    Photo 44  
    Same area of waste line vertical line

    Photo 45  
    Waste line just before entering slab's main line
     
    46) Neither the clothes washer nor dryer were operated or evaluated. They are excluded from this inspection. Client was going to install new units. Presently the discharge of the washing machine is into the slop sink. This is not the recommended procedure. Have a licensed plumber properly install a washing machine drain line tap into the waste line.. The washer is also supplied by a rubber hot/cold supply lines connected to two separate supply valves. I prefer to have them installed with flex metallic supply lines into a single throw ball shut off valve. A water leak alarm option is also a good item to have to either sound an alarm if it detects water or automatically shut off the water supply electrically.

    Photo 46  
    Non GFCI outlet above slop sink and valves to laundry clothes washer

    Photo 47  
    Washing machine discharge into slop sink
     
    Fireplaces, woodstoves and chimneys Return to table of contents  
    Woodstove type: Metal
    Chimney type: Masonry, MetalMasonary for furnace and metal for wood stove.
    47) The masonry chimney crown is deteriorated (cracked or broken) and needs repairs or replacement. The crown is meant to keep water off of the chimney structure. The chimney can be damaged by wet masonry going through freeze-thaw cycles. A properly constructed chimney crown should:

  • Be constructed using either pre-cast concrete slabs, cast-in-place steel reinforced concrete, solid stone, or metal
  • Be sloped down from the flue a minimum of 3 inches of fall per foot of run
  • Extend a minimum of 2-1/2 inches beyond the face of the chimney on all sides
  • Not directly contact the flue liner (if installed), and this gap should be filled with flexible caulk
  • Have flashing installed between the bottom of the crown and the top of the brick chimney

    A qualified chimney service contractor or mason should evaluate and repair or replace the crown as necessary.
    This chimney has a C.B. Antenna attached. We do not recommend that anything be attached to chimneys.

    Photo 13  
    C.B. Antenna hooked up to chimney is not recommended

    Photo 20  
    The Chimney Cap has crackes in the cement.
  • 48) All solid fuel burning appliances (woodstoves and fireplaces, etc.) should be inspected annually by a qualified chimney service contractor, cleaned and repaired as necessary. The wood stove in this house was properly installed. It also appears to have had very little use.

    Photo 28  
    Wood burning stove in den.
     
     
    Basement Return to table of contents  
    Beam material: Solid wood, Steel
    Floor structure above: Solid wood joists
    49) Some wiring is loose, unsupported, or inadequately supported. Standard building practices require non-metallic sheathed wiring to be trimmed to length, attached to runners or to solid backing with fasteners at intervals of 4-1/2 ft. or less. Fasteners should be installed within 12 inches of all enclosures. A qualified, licensed electrician should evaluate and repair as necessary. For example, trim wire to length and/or install staples as needed.

    Photo 37  
    Romex wires running loose in front of southwest basement window
     
    50) Gaps larger than four inches were found in one or more guardrails. This is a safety hazard, especially for small children. A qualified contractor should make modifications as necessary so gaps in guardrails do not exceed four inches. For example, installing additional balusters or railing components.

    Photo 36  
    Basement banisters are too far apart.
     
    51) Cover plate(s) are missing from one or more electric boxes, such as for receptacles, switches and/or junction boxes. They are intended to contain fire and prevent electric shock from exposed wires. This is a safety hazard due to the risk of fire and shock. Cover plates should be installed where missing.
    52) Evidence of prior water intrusion was found behind the furnace area of the basement. For example, water stains and/or efflorescence on the foundation or floor, water stains at bases of support posts, etc. Accumulated water is a conducive condition for wood destroying insects and organisms and should not be present in the basement. The client(s) should review any disclosure statements available and ask the property owner(s) about past accumulation of water in the basement. The basement should be monitored in the future for accumulated water, especially after heavy and/or prolonged periods of rain. If water is found to accumulate, a qualified contractor who specializes in drainage issues should evaluate and repair as necessary. Typical repairs for preventing water from accumulating in the basement include:

  • Repairing, installing or improving rain run-off systems (gutters, downspouts and extensions or drain lines)
  • Improving perimeter grading
  • Repairing, installing or improving underground footing and/or curtain drains

    Ideally, water should not enter the basement, but if water must be controlled after it enters the basement, then typical repairs include installing sump pump(s) or interior perimeter drains.
    Even with the negative slope and that most of the basement walls could not be evaluated due to paneling and storage, I did not find a musty damp odor in this basement. Nor did I see ant wet or stained areas on the walls or floors where visible. Again, when the pre closing inspection is performed this would be a good time to further evaluate the basement for leaks.

    Photo 48  
    Efflorescence stains on wall behind boiler.
     
  •  
    Kitchen Return to table of contents  
    53) One or more electric receptacles that serve countertops surfaces within six feet of a sink appear to have no ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) protection. This is a safety hazard due to the risk of shock. A qualified electrician should evaluate to determine if GFCI protection exists, and if not, repairs should be made so that all receptacles that serve countertops surfaces within six feet of sinks have GFCI protection. For example, install GFCI receptacles or circuit breaker(s) as needed.

    Photo 35  
    No GFCI'S in kitchen
     
    54) All the kitchen appliances performed their intended functions. I ran the dishwasher through an abbreviated cycle and it filled,heated, discharged and did not leak. The oven was turned on to 350 and my digital infared thermometer registered 340. The stove top was the glass type counter top unit and heated up. The sink is a single stainless unit with a single handle faucet with separate faucet sprayer. The cold water shut off was missing the handle. Under the kitchen sink cabinet there appeared to be past evidence of prior leaks and stains. My moisture meter detected normal ranges. I cannot determine exactly what the stains are and as many people are aware mold has become a significant concern. I explained to the clients the value of evaluating the home for mold and they declined to have the testing performed.
    The wall oven had evidence of a slight distortion/wave to the cosmetic metal front face plate. When I put the unit on broil I found that there was no abnormal heat escaping.
    The counter tops and cabinets all were in good condition. They are a laminate material over a wood substrate. The flooring was vinyl tile with no deficiencies showing.
    The venting system was a through the wall fan located above the range .
    The microwave was portable.

    Photo 26  
    Kitchen sink faucet cold water valve missing handle

    Photo 27  
    Numerous stains under kitchen sink. No evidence of current leaks.

    Photo 53  
    Kitchen wall oven worked properly however showed some distortion to exterior metal face plate
     
     
    Bathrooms Return to table of contents  
    55) Tile grout around one or more bathtubs is damaged or deteriorated. A qualified contractor should evaluate and repair tile and/or grout as necessary. Water intrusion through tiles can quickly cause wall deterioration, additional structural problems and mold.

    Photo 32  
    Hall bath/shower area needs to be re grouted and caulked
     
    56) Caulk is missing or deteriorated above the bathtub, where the tub surround meets the tub. It should be replaced where deteriorated and/or applied where missing to prevent water intrusion and damage to the wall structure.
    57) This home has a half bath attached to the den and a full bath in the hall outside the sleeping areas.
    Both bathrooms are primarily ceramic tile and in good condition. GFCI'S are installed and operating correctly.
    No visible leaks from the plumbing and all fixtures drained adequately.
     
    Interior rooms Return to table of contents  
    58) One or more open ground, three-pronged electric receptacles were found. This is a safety hazard due to the risk of shock. A qualified electrician should evaluate and make repairs as necessary. For example, replacing receptacles or correcting wiring circuits.

    Grounding type receptacles began being required in residential structures during the 1960s. Based on the age of this structure and the presence of 2-pronged receptacles in some areas of this structure, an acceptable repair may be to simply replace the ungrounded 3-pronged receptacles with 2-pronged receptacles. However the following appliances require grounding type receptacles:

  • Computer hardware
  • Refrigerators
  • Freezers
  • Air conditioners
  • Clothes washers
  • Clothes dryers
  • Dishwashers
  • Kitchen food waste disposer
  • Information technology equipment
  • Sump pumps
  • Electrical aquarium equipment
  • Hand-held motor-operated tools
  • Stationary and fixed motor-operated tools
  • Light industrial motor-operated tools
  • Hedge clippers
  • Lawn mowers

    This list is not exhaustive. Grounded circuits and receptacles should be installed in locations where such appliances will be used.
  • 59) The light fixture at one or more sets of stairs with living spaces at both ends is controlled by a single switch at one end. This is a safety hazard due to inadequate lighting. The light should be controlled by three-way switches at the top and bottom of the stairs so it can be easily operated on both floors. A qualified electrician should evaluate and make repairs as necessary.

    Photo 50  
    Basement steps emergency wall switch for furnace should be red emergency plate
     
    60) Incandescent light fixtures in one or more closets are too close to shelves and/or storage areas. This is a safety hazard due to the risk of fire. Flammable stored items may come into contact with hot light fixtures, and glass enclosures or lamps may be broken. Standard building practices require incandescent closet light fixtures to have the following clearances: I personally recommend they be removed and a properly enclosed fixture installed. The other issue that is glaring with the closet is how the light fixture receives its power. The original light fixture that was installed in the scuttle opening was converted to a receptacle. Have an electrician evaluate how to properly wire this closet.

  • 12 inches from shelves and spaces above shelves
  • 12 inches above the highest closet pole

    A qualified electrician should evaluate and repair as necessary and as per standard building practices.

    Photo 30  
    Hall closet scuttle has electric socket converted to outlet to feed a pressure light switch.

    Photo 31  
    Same closet showing incandescent bulb on pressure switch
  • 61) Three smoke alarms are visible. One at the base of the steps, one in the den and one in the hall by the bedrooms. Standard building practices now require that smoke detectors be installed on every floor and in every bedroom. A qualified electrician should install smoke alarms as per standard building practices (functioning one exists in hallways leading to bedrooms, and in each bedroom, etc.). For more information, visit http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/pubs/5077.html
    62) Cover plate(s) are missing from one or more electric boxes, such as for receptacles, switches and/or junction boxes. They are intended to contain fire and prevent electric shock from exposed wires. This is a safety hazard due to the risk of fire and shock. Cover plates should be installed where missing.

    Photo 33  
    15 amp outlet with no cover feeding wall a/c unit. Outlet should be 20 amp.
     
    63) Batteries in all the smoke alarms should be replaced after taking occupancy, and annually in the future. "Chirping" noises emitted from smoke alarms typically indicate that batteries need replacing. For more information, visit http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/pubs/5077.html
    64) The whole-house fan performed its intended function. When using a whole house fan make sure that a few windows are opened to allow incoming air. If not you will cause negative air pressure in the house and the air will then be fed via chimney flues etc.
    65) This structure was built prior to 1979 and may contain lead paint. Laws were enacted in 1978 in the US preventing the use of lead paint in residential structures. Lead is a known safety hazard, especially to children but also to adults. The paint found in and around this structure appeared to be intact and may be encapsulated by more recent layers of paint that are not lead-based. Regardless, recommend following precautions as described in the following links to Consumer Products Safety Commission website articles regarding possible lead paint.

    What You Should Know About Lead Based Paint in Your Home: Safety Alert - CPSC Document #5054

    CPSC Warns About Hazards of "Do lt Yourself" Removal of Lead Based Paint: Safety Alert - CPSC Document #5055
    66) Minor popping of sheet rock nails were found in ceilings in one or more areas. They do not appear to be a structural concern, but the client(s) may wish to repair these for aesthetic reasons.

    Photo 54  
    Nail popping in numerous areas of master bedroom ceiling
     
    67) All the windows in the house were recently upgraded with vinyl insulated replacement windows. Check with the home owner for transferable warranties.
     

    Photo 11  
    Rear photo of house. Tree overhangs the rear roof and gutters

    Photo 29  
    Dining area into front living room. Kitchen is on left.

    Photo 34  
    Front bedroom showing outlet
     

    Prior to closing obtain a termite warranty.
    Transfer all manufacturers appliance manuals and contractor warranties.
    Fully test all appliances once again at the pre closing inspection.
    Obtain all certificates of occupancy and UL certificates for any additional work.

    Thank you for allowing me to be your home inspector. I hope this report was informative.
    I am always available if you have any questions or concerns regarding this report.

    Best regards,

    Michael Shain
    NY State License # 16000001670