Water is THE killer of houses, inside and out. The outside of the house comes with an exterior "skin," which is supposed to keep that water OUT of the house. That skin develops in different forms, shapes and materials, and all combine, ostensibly, to keep the water out.
These are two of four such "skin" features on this new construction. You have seen this house before! AND these are two of four similar features, each with EXACTLY the same problem!
Can you see the problem? Look closely and where that small roof detail on the front ends in the corner, the materials do not reach the end. On all four features there is something that looks like this:
The "skin" has a hole in it! Water gets into that hole and infests the bare wood inside. It will cause rot. The rot will cause structural damage. The structural damage will cause future repairs. The future repairs will happen AFTER the builder's "warranty" expires (they know that). After said expiration the homeowner will be on the hook to repair it, necessarily sooner rather than later.
THE LONGER THE HOMEOWNER WAITS THE MORE IT WILL COST!
What's wrong here, and in all four locations? The drip edge, the protective, white horizontal piece of metal under the shingles, should extend all the way to the end and be cut to fit the space at the end. That's the part that requires care and professional skill!* Then a PROPER caulking should be applied where needed. The shingle should not be cut to overlap that end. It will dry out, crack and/or blow off, and take more shingle with it, so a larger gap can open up later.
To see this from the street you need a home inspector's eye. And if you use THIS home inspector his eye will be accompanied with a Canon 20X Image-Stabilizing Binocular to bring those spots close and right into steady focus! That binocular isn't cheap, but very, very effective!! That little tool can also make it convenient for the client to get up close and personal with what the inspector is describing too!
When is the best time to catch these little anomalies? BEFORE THE CLOSING!!
My recommendation: Always, always, always hire an experienced home inspector on new construction. What can look pretty from the street may actually be a ticking time bomb waiting to explode one day as you look up and discover a sagging roof! Or missing materials! Or, believe it or not, carpenter ant or termite damage!
* While you might expect care and professional skill from your builder, it is not always forthcoming. Finding that in today's 7-11 Construction Worker Pool is about like hoping to find a fine tailor in the WalMart Men's Department. Ain't happenin' !!
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC
Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.
Office (703) 330-6388 Cell (703) 585-7560