Ever wonder about your house number? Often, the previous owner installed the number and the new owner never had to think about it, leaving them clueless as to why it was placed where it is or why a particular color or size was chosen. These numbers are more important than you probably realize, and a lot of thought goes into making sure they are visible.Continue reading →
This list of terms covers most of the common household dangers likely to be encountered by our inspectors.Continue reading →
Stains on asphalt roofing shingles make a house look shabby, which detracts from its value. In some cases, stains are merely a cosmetic issue. But sometimes they’re symptomatic of a problem that, if left unchecked, can lead to more serious damage and, eventually, roof failure. It’s not always hard to distinguish the causes of stains, nor, in most cases, to get rid of them and prevent the stains from recurring.Continue reading →
Indoor air quality is generally worse than most people believe, but there are things you can do about it.
Some Quick Facts:
Indoor air quality can be worse than that of outdoor air.
Problems can arise from moisture, insects, pets, appliances, radon, materials used in household products and furnishings, smoke, and other sources.
Effects range from minor annoyances to major health risks.
Remedies include ventilation, cleaning, moisture control, inspections, and following manufacturers’ directions when using appliances and products.
One of the easiest ways to reduce solar heat gain and subsequent energy costs is as simple as planting a tree. The strategic placement of A shade tree can be uesful during the summertrees, known as landscape shading or tree shading, is a technique used to provide shade from the warm summer sun. Unobstructed solar heat can significantly increase indoor air temperature, which will frustrate efforts to keep the house cool.Continue reading →
Did you know the following facts about lead?
FACT: Lead exposure can harm young children and babies even before they are born.
FACT: Even children who seem healthy can have high levels of lead in their bodies.
FACT: You can get lead in your body by breathing or swallowing lead dust, or by eating soil or paint chips containing lead.
FACT: You have many options for reducing lead hazards. In most cases, lead-based paint that is in good condition is not a hazard.
FACT: Removing lead-based paint improperly can increase the danger to your family.
If you think your home might have lead hazards, read on to learn about lead and some simple steps to protect your family.Continue reading →
Lightning is the “visible discharge of static electricity within a cloud, between clouds or between the earth and a cloud,” as defined by Underwriters Laboratories. Lightning is unpredictable and a serious threat to buildings and their occupants virtually everywhere.Continue reading →
Log homes may be site-built or pre-cut in a factory for delivery to the site. Some log home manufacturers can also customize their designs. Before designing or purchasing a manufactured log home, you need to consider the following factors for energy efficiency.Continue reading →
The term “manufactured home” was adopted in 1980 by the the U.S. Congress to describe a type of house that is constructed in a factory to comply with a building code developed by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). In the past, manufactured homes were called “mobile homes,” a term that many people still use. However, “mobile” is no longer an accurate name because fewer than 5% of such homes are ever moved off the owner’s original site.Continue reading →
– The key to mold control is moisture control.
– If mold is a problem in your home, you should clean up the mold promptly and fix the water problem.
– It is important to dry water-damaged areas and items within 24 to 48 hours to prevent mold growth.
Pesticides are poisons designed to kill a variety of plants and animals, such as insects (insecticides), weeds (herbicides), and mold or fungus (fungicides). They are each composed of an inert carrier and a pest-specific active ingredient, both of which are toxic to humans and pets.Continue reading →
Plumbing may be defined as the practice, materials and fixtures used in the installation, maintenance and alteration of all piping, fixtures, appliances and appurtenances in connection with sanitary and storm drainage facilities, the venting system, and public and private water supply systems. Plumbing does not include the trade of drilling water wells, installing water-softening equipment, or the business of manufacturing or selling plumbing fixtures, appliances, equipment or hardware. A plumbing system consists of three separate parts: an adequate potable water supply system; a safe, adequate drainage system; and ample fixtures and equipment.Continue reading →
Swimming pools should always be happy places. Unfortunately, each year thousands of American families confront swimming pool tragedies, drownings and near-drownings of young children. At InterNACHI, we want to prevent these tragedies. These are guidelines for pool barriers that can help prevent most submersion incidents involving young children. These guidelines are not intended as the sole method to minimize pool drowning of young children, but include helpful safety tips for safer pools.Continue reading →
If your family gets drinking water from a private well, do you know if your water is safe to drink? What health risks could you and your family face? Where can you go for help or advice? The EPA regulates public water systems; it does not have the authority to regulate private drinking water wells. Approximately 15% of Americans rely on their own private drinking water supplies, and these supplies are not subject to EPA standards, although some state and local governments do set rules to protect users of these wells.Continue reading →
Radon is a cancer-causing, radioactive gas.
You cannot see, smell or taste radon. But it still may be a problem in your home. When you breathe air containing radon, you increase your risk of getting lung cancer. In fact, the Surgeon General of the United States has warned that radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States today.Continue reading →
The Federal Housing Administration (FHA), which is part of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), administers various single-family mortgage insurance programs. These programs operate through FHA-approved lending institutions which submit applications to have the property appraised and have the buyer’s credit approved. These lenders fund the mortgage loans which the Department insures. HUD does not make direct loans to help people buy homes. The Section 203(k) Program is HUD’s primary program for the rehabilitation and repair of single- family properties.Continue reading →
Remodeling can dramatically increase the quality of life for building occupants, but if you are considering a remodel strictly as an investment, think twice about it.
Remodeling is rarely a sound monetary investment.
According to a report published by Remodeling Magazine, most remodeling projects add only 60% to 80% of their cost to the home, and no projects, on average, yield any positive return.Continue reading →
Replacement Windows for Improved Energy Efficiency: A Walk-Through Case Study by Michael Chotiner of The Home Depot I’m not a building inspector, but as a former building contractor and a widely published home-improvement writer, I’m often asked by friends and … Continue reading →
Roofs play a key role in protecting building occupants and interiors from outside weather conditions, primarily moisture. The roof, insulation and ventilation must all work together to keep the building free of moisture. Roofs also provide protection from the sun. In fact, if designed correctly, roof overhangs can protect the building’s exterior walls from moisture and sun. The concerns regarding moisture, standing water, durability and appearance are different, reflected in the choices of roofing materials.Continue reading →
Eventually, your buyers are going to conduct an inspection. You may as well know what they are going to find by getting there first. Having an inspection performed ahead of time helps in many other waysContinue reading →