So, take your pick, Max Headroom or minimum headroom - which would YOU want?
This is a flip. A previous, small house was razed in favor of a large, expensive house.
Everything was made newer and larger - from the foundation to the roof. Pulling up to it, from the street, it gives every appearance of being a wonderful house!
After spending many hours there one fine day, there are many, many things that make themselves obvious that much of the house was put together by people who are not professionals in the trade they worked on. Name your system - electrical, plumbing, HVAC, architectural design - a jack-of-all trades, and not a specialist, spent a lot of time in this house!
Take this rear door arrangement for example.
We have a basement door, from a finished basement, to a stairwell under a double door off the kitchen eating area.
The "designer," let's just call him Flipper, not his real name, said it was his "vision" to put the kitchen door there.
Never mind that the family room is on the right side of the house, outside of this photo, and would have made an ideal spot for a doorway to a deck or patio.
THIS SPOT IS FLIPPER'S "VISION!"
The house is now an expensive house and my clients want to put a deck there. They do not, however, want to put a teeny little deck off to one side.
Let's picture the deck they want to build - say 18', 20', maybe 24' wide. Can you see it?
Now, picture yourself exiting the basement door to do a little yard work. As you approach the top of the stairs your max headroom there would be about 3 1/2 feet!
Have a nice day! Can you catch the "vision?"
The International Residency Code, adopted and followed by this particular county, says, in both the 2006 and 2009 editions, that the minimum headroom when going up or down a staircase is 6' 8". Hey, there isn't even enough room there to accommodate that guardrail under the deck!
I think a little "vision" should have been used by Flipper to read the code's minimum headroom requirements before deciding to put his visionary kitchen door there!
Oh well, that little protective rail over the kitchen door sure is beautiful and does add a nice touch! It better, cause it ain't a' goin' no where!
My recommendation: when you pull up to a newly-renovated house, don't assume anything! You KNOW what happens when we ASSume...
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC
Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.
Office (703) 330-6388 Cell (703) 585-7560