Importance of Inspections of New Construction Homes
I know, the home is newly built, what can be wrong with it? The answer is simply A LOT!
I know that goes against most people's thinking because the home is new and each stage of the home is inspected by a building inspector to ensure the home is being built to "code", so how can there be things wrong? Because no one is perfect, and people make mistakes. Then there is also things that happen AFTER the building inspector has passed certain areas of the home being built. For example, how many of you have heard of floor joists being cut to install drain pipes for showers or bathtubs? Don't think it still happens? I am sure if you speak to several home inspectors you will find it does. See, the building inspector inspects the framing of the home and passes it. The plumber comes in and does their work and that is inspected. The thing is the inspector doesn't always look at what else was changed such as cut floor joist. They will even cut engineered I-joists which requires a structural engineer to make the repairs properly.
I know, where's the list showing " A LOT" of things? I promise it's coming but I wanted to provide you more than you want to see, especially if you didn't get an inspection on a new construction home.
Let's speak on roofs for a moment... You would think what could possibly be wrong with the roof? It's a brand-new roof, there shouldn't be any issues on the roof, right? Surely the building has only the best installing the roofs on the homes they build? I wish I could say you're correct, but I can't. As of today, the last 14 new construction homes I have inspected all have had roof issues.
Some more than others, but still there shouldn't be any issue present. Some of these are not minor issues. I have seen 1/4-1/2 inch holes filled with silicone caulking, damage from construction, 1/2 to 1 inch dips in the roof, the fiberglass core visible, vents installed as an afterthought. When I say afterthought, I mean the vent was nailed
to the roof, through the shingles and the edges caulked using
silicone to create a seal. These are just a few of the many issues I have seen on shingle roofs on new construction homes. Would you want to have these present on your home? Now for the other things I have seen, as promised. To name several of them are - loose toilets, loose toilet tanks, warped doors, brokens drawers in new cabinets, bad disposals in the kitchen sink, leaks around B-vent pipes going through the roof, construction waste thrown under the front porch, bad wiring causing the circuit breaker to trip, then even with the power off to that section of home the power still showing up to receptacles, but not where it should, HVAC systems not cooling as they should, thermostats not functioning properly, cracks in tiles showers, faulty widows, improperly built decks. These are not everything I have found, but still present a rather large list of things many people wouldn't or doesn't think are present, but unfortunately are present.
As a home inspector I want you to be aware of the issues found in new construction homes. These are not all the issues and doesn't even begin to list the cosmetic issues you will find. I'm sure you are thinking I am only wanting your business. I will admit I do want your business, but because I am in business to help protect you from mistakes like these while you are making a huge investment in a home. I would rather you use a different inspection company than not get an inspection. On either a new or pre-existing home, please be sure to always have it inspected by a qualified, thorough inspector such as First Home Inspections.