So, you are buying a brand-new house and think that a home inspection might be a luxury you can live without? Think again! There are a lot of different moving parts that must come together when a home is being built. A lot of times different contractors and subcontractors are utilized that do not communicate properly and mistakes can be made. The most common mistakes involve framing, insulation, air-sealing and mechanical details that can affect the comfort and energy usage. We have also found electrical problems, plumbing problems, roofing/decking installation errors, potential structural problems, drainage issues and all kinds of other issues as well.
Let me share a story of what we at Old Line Home Inspections found during a recent inspection on a newly built home. Look at the first picture and you will see a drainage pipe that was installed in a basement that went to a floor drain. The problem is that there was no drain in the floor upstairs to match up with this pipe! Basically, it was a drain to nowhere. Upon further investigation, it was discovered that the room above this drainpipe was the laundry room on the main floor.
Look at the second picture and you will see that a beautiful tile floor was installed over top of what was supposed to be the drainpipe for the washing machine! While washing machines are not required by building codes to have a drainage pipe in the floor it is always a good idea in case the washing machine malfunctions. This is especially true when washing machines are on the upper floors of the home since leakage can damage or even destroy carpeting and hardwood flooring.
This is not the kind of thing that a homeowner or real estate agent should be expected to catch during a final walkthrough. Home inspectors are trained to take a methodical approach as they go throughout the house. If they something does not make sense, they follow that anomaly back to the source and report what they find. In this case, we saved the homebuyer a lot of trouble since there was no way for them to know that a drain was supposed to be built into the floor. Even if they did know, homebuyers have so much on their mind they should not be expected to know every last detail involving the construction of their new home.
This story was a comparatively mild case, I can share numerous other new home construction anomalies that are much more serious than this one. At Old Line Home Inspections, we will go through every detail on your new home build and report anything that doesn’t look right or that should be improved before you close on the sale of the home. For more information, please contact us at (410) 236-3027 or click here to schedule an appointment.