What I'm Seeing Now


True Or False - You Don't Need A Home Inspection On New Construction?

True or false - you don't need a home inspection on new construction?

So, what do you think?

This is what you hear from the builder or builder's Realtor:

-->   We only employ the best subcontractors to work on your house.
-->   We have a supervisor on site, every day.  He is making hundreds of regular inspections, every day.
-->   The County or local jurisdiction makes multiple inspections of the house to insure code compliance.
-->   We allow you inspections of the property with our supervisor so you can stay on top of the work.
-->   You can contact us any time with questions, and we will answer you right away.

Walking through a new house with my clients I noticed something.  Remember, this is after the daily supervision and county approval for code compliance.

This is what I saw in every bedroom.  Do you see anything odd? 

No, you say, I don't see anything.

I didn't see anything either, and that was the problem.

Looking around each bedroom I noticed no HVAC registers, in the ceiling, walls or floors.

My clients had not noticed.

I waited until I saw every room.  The bathrooms had one, or two, in the walls.  But there was nothing in any bedroom or bedroom closet that would have needed a register.

At that point it was time for some fun.

So, in a bedroom I said, "Show me where the air blows from the heating and air conditioning system."

They looked around.  Nothing.

Shining my flashlight on the carpet above I said, "Feel here."

They did.  The AC was running.  "It's cold!"

"Yes, this is the new magical, invisible heating and air conditioning system."

They looked at each other and me, marveling.  Then the wife looked at me and said, "Wait.  How can that work?  Isn't the air blocked by the carpet?"

"Yes!"  Then I explained.  Despite all the builder supervision, county inspections, and careful work by professional subcontractors, somehow all the floor registers in the house have all been covered by carpeting and vinyl flooring!

And I ask this:  do you think this was the only problem I found in this house?

The Answer to My First Question?  FALSE!!

My recommendation:  gee, it's a good thing we did that inspection.  Sure, this one problem would have been figured out eventually.  It's coming to the end of the AC season, so it might not have been noticed until this winter when they experience that the house would not heat up.  But by then damage could have happened to the system when it is overworked trying to match the indoor temperature to the thermostat demand.  Yes, a private home inspection is a good thing.  A couple more EXPERIENCED eyes never hurt!



Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

Office (703) 330-6388   Cell (703) 585-7560


Comment balloon 23 commentsJay Markanich • September 14 2017 10:02AM
True Or False - You Don't Need A Home Inspection On New Construction?
True or false - you don't need a home inspection on new construction? So, what do you think? This is what you hear from the builder or builder's Realtor: --> We only employ the best subcontractors to work on your house. --> We have a… more
Doing More Than The Client Expects. The Slight Edge Business Model.
Doing more than the client expects. The slight edge business model. What is your business model? Do you create a slight edge? I think exceeding expectation is an important business model. Or should be. Clients have expectations in every business… more
Why This Hose Bib Shut-Off Valve Replacement Is Incorrect
Why this hose bib shut-off valve replacement is incorrect. Apparently the old hose bib shut-off valve in this house broke and needed replacement. It's always best to have a professional do such work, or, if one is capable of doing one's own work, at… more
Warning - Sarcasm To Follow. Is This A Pro Job Or Not?
Warning- sarcasm to follow. Is this a pro job or not? To be truthful, I saw the brick work from the parking lot and knew it would be a thermal camera issue inside. Is it a pro job? Probably not. What happened? Likely the front hose bib was not… more
When Staircases Are Lemons
When staircases are lemons. From my Oxford Dictionary of English - Lemon - informal - an unsatisfactory or feeble person or thing. In this 21 year old townhouse, three levels, when walking up and down the staircases, all of them, that is ALL OF THEM… more
The Walls Were Wet In The Middle But Not At The Bottom? Why?
The walls were wet in the middle but not at the bottom? Why? And that was the question. I couldn't answer it! I only knew what I found. During the thermal image sweep of this condo I found walls and ceilings wet, but only on the lower level. The… more
A Flat Roof Must Provide A Way For Water To Go
A flat roof must provide a way for water to go. If not, water sits, and finds any small opening it can. Since we know gravity works, if water can go down, it will. On a flat roof surface, that means eventual destruction. This is a 17 year old EPDM… more
Thermal Imaging Art
Thermal imaging art. Thermal imaging can check a lot of things. It can be a precursor check for electrical issues. Heating and air conditioning can be evaluated. Roof and plumbing leaks are a given. And the best way (the only way inside walls)… more
When Any Upper Level Is Hot Insulation Is Almost Always The Reason
When any upper level is hot insulation is almost always the reason. And why else wouldn't it be? It could be that the air conditioning does not reach or blow hard enough into the upper level. But that air pressure is an easy check. When air is… more
My Client Asked If There Was No Insulation In the Wall
My client asked if there was no insulation in the wall. Often during a home inspection my client follows me around when I do a thermal image sweep to check for insulation issues or roof leaks. They like looking over my shoulder and listen to my… more