The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly – Through the Eyes of a Home Inspector

When it comes to home repairs and renovations, now and again they’re good, other times they’re bad, and sometimes they’re just plain ugly. If the homeowner – buyer or seller – making the renovations is a professional and knows what they’re doing, it’s good. If…

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When it comes to home repairs and renovations, now and again they’re good, other times they’re bad, and sometimes they’re just plain ugly. If the homeowner – buyer or seller – making the renovations is a professional and knows what they’re doing, it’s good. If their intent is good but their skills are lacking it’s bad. And if they’re way off the mark and have no idea what they’re doing, well, then it can get pretty ugly real fast. A home inspector can encounter a lot in a day, in fact we’ve created a gallery that showcases some of the incredible things found during home inspections, and sometimes we have to ask – Why? Why did this happen? How could it happen? What was the person thinking?

THE ‘BAD’

Taking shortcuts is risky when it comes to the safety of your home and the people living in it. But home inspectors continue to report all sorts of dubious fixes that range from the laughable to the ludicrous to the downright dangerous. Let’s start with some of the ‘bad’.

  • Lack of proper insulation. Without proper insulation, moist air from the home’s interior can condense on cooler drywall ceilings, creating the moisture that breeds mould.
  • Improper ventilation. Air needs to circulate. Do not block or restrict your air vents.
  • Improper sealing. Unless repaired properly, leakage will only get worse, causing odour, moisture, and damp.

THE ‘MAD’

From ‘bad’ to ‘mad’.

  • Working without a permit or not specifying your repairs to code. This is a big no-no; if you’re found out all that you’ve repaired or built may be torn down.
  • Different pipes for different jobs. Stick to using the pipes for what they’re designed for. A bathroom exhaust should not be vented into the furnace/water heater chimney.
  • Do it yourself rewiring. Just don’t do it. Hire an electrician.

AND THE ‘DANGEROUS TO DO’

This category lowers the bar from ‘mad’ to ‘dangerous’. Under no circumstances should you replicate what you read here. Doing so will put your home and anyone who lives under its roof at risk.

  • Water near electrical outlets. Unless you like electrocution avoid this at all costs.
  • Flammable materials near a heating appliance, furnace, or water heater. Fires are dangerous, spread quickly, and it is costly to repair fire damage.
  • Improper support. You want to keep the roof above, not on, your head. Anything heavy needs proper support or you risk collapse.

Get professionals to do the work. If you’re not sure, hire a reputable home inspector to assess the work. A home inspector conducts a visual, non-invasive examination of the condition of a home, inspecting all the accessible major components including the roof, basement and/or crawlspace, foundation, heating and cooling systems, plumbing, electrical and structural components of the house and delivering to the client a comprehensive report of findings. Experience counts when hiring a building inspector, as does a dedication to ongoing training. After the inspection get a recommended contractor to give you a quote to do the repairs or renovation.

Having a professional at your side or doing the work for you is a better and safer way to operate. Because what may save you time and money in the short term could very well end up causing you considerably more time, money, and stress in the long term.

Building Pro Inspections is fully insured, a member in good standing with the Canadian Association of Home and Property Inspectors (CAHPI) and licensed by Consumer Protection BC (license #57225). CAHPI requires mandatory continuing education credits in order to retain membership.

The goal of Building Pro Inspections is to give the best possible inspection so you can make the best decision with confidence. Whether you’re a buyer or seller, contact us today to learn more.