Hi boys and girls! This is our third lesson!
Let's get to the bottom of this thing, in more ways than one!
Remember, we have a loose gutter that dips in the middle. When it rains hard water flows over and onto the box window and front porch below.
Judging from that caulking, this has been happening for some time. That caulking is turning brown with mildew.
The homeowner obviously knows there is a problem because that caulk job was very sloppy. He probably did it himself. But caulking doesn't solve the problem!
So here are the final clues! Now it's easy!
The photo on the right shows moss on the brick, another sign this has been happening a while.
And the photo on the left has soil at the bottom. That can't be good. That also means there is soil under the front staircase that is getting wet as water crashes down.
What happens when water constantly splashes against a house, boys and girls?
Mr. Jay knew there was a problem on the wall under the front door. That wall is inside the garage. So he took his client and the Realtor there first! What did they find?
Yep! That is really wet! There is serious staining on the drywall and on the blocks!
What does that mean? Look closely at the drywall just to the right of the concrete blocks, just at the top. Do you see it?
That's right! A small mud tunnel. And the other photo above shows the left corner under the front porch. You can't see it in the big photo! That's another tunnel!
Mr. Jay showed them how stained everything is! The termite guys tell Mr. Jay that 90% of the time when termites get into a house it is under the front door!
What Mr. Jay CANNOT do on a home inspection is INVASIVE INVESTIGATION. He would LOVE to! But this is serious. Mr. Jay is worried about the second floor above all this, as well as the structure over the garage door and to the left of the garage door, which helps hold up the second floor!
On the report, Mr. Jay said, "Wood insect damage suspected - call a licensed pest control agent - termite tunnels and mud visible above and to the left of the garage door and under the front door. The framing beside and header over the garage door is not visible, but it is possible they are damaged. It is unknown if the termite activity is current or controlled, but an invasive investigation of the framing beside and above the garage door is necessary to properly evaluate what is going on."
The listing agent didn't like Mr. Jay saying that! She said, "He is a home inspector, not a termite inspector." Well, she is right! BUT DON'T DISCOUNT THE HOME INSPECTOR PART! In the report Mr. Jay used words like "suspected," "possible," "unknown," "current," and "necessary." He does that for a reason!
The seller was very interested though! He consented to an invasive investigation and wanted it right away! That's because he is smart. And, listen carefully, HE HAS HAD A TERMITE MAINTENANCE CONTRACT WITH A LOCAL COMPANY (SAID TO BE SUPERIOR IN ITS FIELD) FOR MANY YEARS! THERE IS NO EVIDENCE ON THIS HOUSE THIS SUPERIOR TERMITE COMPANY HAS DONE ANYTHING TO CONTROL A POSSIBLE TERMITE PROBLEM, EVEN THOUGH THESE CLUES HAVE BEEN HERE FOR SOME TIME, PROBABLY YEARS!!!
So, five days later we all returned!
It was really fun boys and girls! Tune in tomorrow!
Mr. Jay's School of Inspectology. Where the learning never stops. You can check out, but you can never leave.
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC
Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.
Office (703) 330-6388 Cell (703) 585-7560