Category Archives: broward home inspection

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Homeowner Maintenance: Changing the HVAC Filter

Homeowner Maintenance: Changing the HVAC Filter

Part of responsible homeownership includes, of course, regular home maintenance. And there are some tasks that, if deferred, can lead to a home system that’s inefficient and overworked, which can result in problems and expenses. One such task is changing the filter of the home’s HVAC system. It’s simple and inexpensive, and taking care of it at least every three months can mean the difference between optimum comfort and avoidable repairs.

What Can Go Wrong

Most homes have some sort of furnace or heat pump, and manA-C System Home Inspectiony of those homes (especially newer ones) have combined heating, ventilation and air-conditioning or HVAC systems. Each type uses some type of air filter or screen to prevent larger airborne particles (up to 40 microns) from entering the system and clogging sensitive machinery. A system that has a dirty filter can suffer from pressure drop, which can lead to reduced air flow, or “blow-out,” resulting in no air infiltration at all. Any of these conditions can cause the system to work harder to keep the home warm or cool (depending on the season and the setting). And any mechanical component that has to work harder to run efficiently puts undue stress on the whole system, which can lead to premature failure, resulting in repair or replacement.

Also, a dirty filter that’s exposed to condensation can become damp, which can lead to mold growth that can be spread throughout the home by the HVAC system. This can lead to serious health consequences, not to mention a compromised unit that will likely require servicing and may require replacement, depending on the severity of the moisture problem.

Types of Filters

Most HVAC and furnace filters are disposable, made of biodegradable paper or similar media, and shaped in cells, screens or fins designed to trap as much airborne debris as possible. Filters can typically be purchased in economical multi-packs, and there are many types that will fit different models of furnace/HVAC units. It’s important to use the appropriate filter for your unit; using the wrong filter that doesn’t fit the unit properly can create the same types of problems as having a dirty filter. Your HVAC installer can show you where the filter goes and how to remove the old one and install a new one. Your unit may also have an affixed label with directions for easy filter replacement.

How Often?

Your HVAC or furnace technician should service your unit once a year. Because a furnace/HVAC unit contains moving parts, it’s important that belts are not cracked and dry, ventilation ductwork is not gapped, cracked or rusted, and components, such as coils and fans, are clog-free and adequately lubricated for unimpeded operation. This sort of evaluation is best left to the professional, unless the homeowner has had the appropriate training.
The filter of the unit, especially if it’s an HVAC unit that will tend to get nearly year-round use, should be changed by the homeowner at least every three months, but possibly more often.
Check your filter’s condition and change it once a month if:
You run your unit six months a year to year-round.
You have pets. Pet dander can become airborne and circulate through the home’s ventilation system just as typical household dust does.
You have a large family. More activity means more household dust, dirt and debris.
You smoke indoors.
You or someone in your household suffers from allergies or a respiratory condition.
You live in a particularly windy area or experience high winds for extended periods, especially if there are no nearby shrubs or trees to provide a natural windbreak.
You live in an area prone to or having recently experienced any wildfires. Airborne ash outdoors will eventually find its way indoors.
You have a fireplace that you occasionally use.
You live on a working farm or ranch. Dust and dirt that gets kicked up by outdoor work activity and/or large animals can be pulled into the home’s ventilation system, especially through open windows.
You have a large garden. Depending on its size and how often you work it, tilling soil, planting, pulling weeds, using herbicides and pesticides, and even watering mean that dirt, chemicals and condensation can be pulled into your home’s ventilation system.
There is construction taking place around or near the home. You may be installing a new roof or a pool, or perhaps a neighbor is building a home or addition. Even if the activity is only temporary, dust and debris from worksites adjacent to or near the home can be sucked into the home’s ventilation system, and this increased activity can tax your HVAC system.

Change the filter immediately if:

The filter is damaged. Whether it happened inside the packaging or while being installed, a damaged filter that has bent fins, collapsed cells or holes will not work as well as an undamaged filter, especially if it allows system air to bypass the filter at any point.
The filter is damp. A filter affected by moisture intrusion, system condensation, or even high indoor humidity can quickly become moldy and spread airborne mold spores throughout the home via the ventilation system.
There is evidence of microbial growth or mold on the filter. Mold spores already infiltrating the home via the HVAC system are not only bad for the unit itself, but they can pose a health hazard for the family, ranging from an irritated respiratory system to a serious allergic reaction. The musty smell produced by a moldy HVAC filter is also unpleasant and may take a while to completely eradicate from inside the home. If you discover that you have moldy air filter, it’s important to have the cause investigated further. An InterNACHI certified Cris Home inspector can help determine the problem so that it doesn’t recur.

Tips on Changing the Filter

Turn off the unit before replacing the filter.
Use the right filter for your unit and make sure it’s not damaged out of the package.
Follow the directions for your unit to make sure you’re installing the filter properly. For example, many filters use different colors for the front and back (or upstream and downstream flow) so that they’re not installed backwards.
Make sure there aren’t any gaps around the filter frame. If this is the case, you may have the wrong size filter, or the filter itself may be defective or damaged.
Use a rag to clean up any residual dust before and after you replace the filter.
Securely replace any levers, gaskets and/or seals.
Turn the unit on and observe it while it’s operating to make sure the filter stays in place.
Note the date of filter replacement in a convenient location for the next time you inspect it. A filter that becomes dirty enough to change within a short period of time may indicate a problem with the unit or ventilation system, so monitoring how often the filter requires changing is important information for your technician to have.

Call a technician for servicing if:

Your unit fails to turn back on.
The fan is slow or makes excessive noise, or the fins are bent.
The coils are excessively dusty or clogged.
You notice moisture intrusion from an unknown source anywhere in the system.
Homeowners who take care of the easy task of changing their HVAC filter can help prevent system downtime and avoidable expenses, as well as keep their families living and breathing comfortably. Cris home inspections Cris Home inspector can provide more useful tips and reminders during your annual home maintenance inspection.


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Home Inspection Services

Cris Home Inspections Has been in business for over 15 years and our Inspectors are experienced in the construction and electrical industries. We have the knowledge and experience to do the Home Inspection right. We are fully licensed, insured, binded and guarantee your satisfaction.

Home Buyers Inspection Services:

One of the many steps in the real estate purchase is to have a home inspection on your future home so there wouldn’t be any surprises and home that is being purchased should be inspected no matter of the age new or old. So the Buyer could learn true conditions of the home. Cris Home Inspectors will review different components in the home with you and discuss were those components fall in their life cycle, and how to maintain and improve the condition of the home. We provide a detailed home inspection report explaining the condition of the home both positive and negative. Our Home Inspection Reports are easy to read and understand with high resolution photos. During the Home Inspection process we will inspect and discuss any problems the home may have. Our professional Home Inspectors will do the job right.

Home inspection Services for Real Estate Professionals:

Your clients turn to you for advice during many stages of the home buying and selling process. In particular, many clients look for guidance in hiring a home inspector. Our work is a commitment to the understanding that your reputation is our responsibility. We are there as a resource to assist you and your clients making the ever important decision of buying or selling a home. We walk the client through the Home Inspection process from the beginning to the end. We are always available to answer any questions you might have and to be helpful home inspection resource for you and your client. We are fully insured Home Inspection Company and all of our Home Inspectors are Internachi Certified and you can be sure that your client will receive excellent service from a qualified home inspector.

Home Sellers inspection Services:

Pre-Sale Home Inspection provides confidence in the condition and value of your home. The last minute discovery of problems by a buyer can lead to a time delay, Expenses and even to derail of the sale. By taking care of any repairs or modifications up front, the final sale will have fewer complications and expedite the escrow process. Buyers have more confidence when looking at a house that has already been inspected. More confidence means more offers.


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Home Inspection

A Home Inspection is examination of the condition of your home, often in connection of  home for sale. Home inspections are provided by a trained home inspector who is trained to perform home inspections.

Are you selling your home? It can be a very difficult and a long process. You want and need every advantage in marketing your home to prospective buyers. The best way to show that your home is a good investment is to have us perform a Home Inspection. As InterNACHI certified home Inspectors, we will thoroughly inspect your home and generate a detailed report along with pictures the same day.

You can complete repairs and improvements before you show or even list your home.  A Home Inspection helps you justify your asking price, and can help avert any last-minute re-negotiations on price or condition.  A Home Inspection may convince a buyer to waive his own Inspection, making the process to go faster. You can advertise that your home has been pre-Inspected, which will help drive traffic to your home.  Of course, We would be happy to perform a Home Inspection for the new home you’re buying – just give us a call.

Inspections we provide::

  • Windstorm Mitigation Inspections
  • Citizens Roof Certificate Inspections
  • 4 Point Inspections
  • Home Inspections
  • Commercial Property Inspections

We can assist your family, friends and neighbors with all Residential/Commercial Inspection needs on their homes, weather they are selling their home or buying a new one. We provide Home Inspections Palm Beach County, Miami, Broward and Martin County.  Thank you in advance for the opportunity to serve you once again.  Please give us a call anytime at  561-393-9977 &  954-523-4040.

Commercial Inspections
10 Years Experience

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Things to know about a Saint Lucie County Home Inspection.

Saint Lucie County Home Inspection is a objective visual Inspection of the physical structure and systems of a house. Buying a house is one of the biggest investments you will ever make. A Home Inspection may identify the need for major repairs. Home Inspection is NOT just for buyers, but also sellers. The Home Inspection can identify problems in the making and give the seller the opportunity to make the repairs that are needed to make the house in better selling condition. The Inspector will check – structure, foundation, attic, doors, windows, ceilings, floors, exterior, interior, roof, electrical, walls, plumbing, HVAC, Insulation and ventilation.

Cris Home Inspections is a complete home and building inspection firms specializing in Martin County.  Our Inspectors are able to conduct a variety of different Inspections for you, including 4 Point Inspections, Windstorm Mitigation Inspections, Citizen’s Roof Certificate Inspections and Home Inspections. This allows you to have one source for all your Home Inspection needs. Our professional, friendly staff will be more than willing to answer any questions that you may have. In addition, we will be able to provide you with an estimate for the overall cost of your Home Inspection.

 


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Things to know about a Broward Home Inspection and the benefits.

home inspection

Home Inspection

Important things to know about a Home Inspection and the benefits. Home Inspections are an important process that plays a pivotal role in the buying or selling of property. It is done by a professional Home Inspector trained for this specific purpose. A house will probably be one of the largest investments you make, you do not want to lose any time while forking out where you are not required to.

Generally, the procedure is beneficial to both the seller who gets to know the real value of the property in context, and the buyer who gets an in-depth understanding of the home’s condition. What does a comprehensive Home Inspection process entail? The procedure may slightly vary from one Home Inspector to the next simply owed to the varying personalities of each

While one may be thorough and detailed, he/she may not be as experienced as the next hence, losing an edge in that perspective.  However, there are three common components that every good Inspector should cover and include in the final report. A comprehensive Home Inspection should basically elaborate and categorize each problem as a safety issue, minor defect or major defect.

Secondly, the Inspector should also list down all items that need to be replaced, repaired or needs servicing. Lastly, the Inspector should explain the items that are suitable for now and those that require close monitoring.

Benefits of a Home Inspection for Broward County Residents:

To a home owner, contrary to common perception, Home Inspection shouldn’t be carried out only when buying or selling. It is equally beneficial to all home owners and in fact, those that do it on a regular basis enhance the longevity of their property.

A comprehensive Home Inspection will not only document the condition of your home, but also identify minor defects before they turn into expensive repairs. The procedure will go a long way in helping you find solutions to problems in a professional and timely manner.
To Buyers technically, this is the lot that stands to gain the most from Home Inspections. Qualified Inspectors are trained to detect as many defects as possible with the help of acquired techniques, specialized tools and extensive experience. This basically means that the buyer will be made aware of any problems and hazardous conditions within the property hence avoiding over-paying.

This gives the buyer peace of mind as he/she makes an informed decision on whether or not to purchase the house or to keep looking. Not only will the buyer get valuable, in-depth knowledge about the new home, he/she will also avoid future surprises.
To Sellers it is common to find home owners seeking to sell and not identifying problems on the property while showing it to a prospective buyer. A seller can avoid losing out on sweet deals by procuring a Home Inspection. This will enable the Seller to replace or repair any defects to increase the property’s value. This also eliminates the rush and costs that come with last minute repairs that are known to cause delays.

The bottom line is that regardless of whether you are a buyer, seller or home owner, Home Inspections are a highly beneficial procedure that you will be glad about in the future. It is certainly worth every penny offering great value for your money.


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A few things you should know before building your dream home!

Building a Home

 

If you want to build a new home, there are things you need to know before you begin. Homes and projects financed by FHA-insured mortgages are the collateral for these loans, and their lack of durability can increase the FHA’s financial risk in the event of default.

More specifically, the model codes do not contain any minimum requirements for the durability of items such as doors, windows, gutters and downspouts, painting and wall coverings, kitchen cabinets and carpeting. The MPS includes minimum standards for these, and other items, to ensure that the value of an FHA-insured home is not reduced by the deterioration of these components.  

The property report contains relevant information about the subdivision and must be delivered to each purchaser before the signing of the contract or agreement

The property report, which is also prepared by the developer, goes to the buyer. The law requires the seller to give the report to a prospective lot purchaser prior to the time a purchase agreement is signed. Ask for it. The seller is also required to have the buyer sign a receipt acknowledging receipt of the property report.

Do not sign the receipt unless you have actually received the property report. 

Check the developer’s property report before buying. This is the kind of information you will find in a property report:

  • distances to nearby communities over paved and unpaved roads
  • existence of mortgages or liens on the property
  • whether contract payments are placed in escrow
  • availability and location of recreational facilities
  • availability of sewer and water service or septic tanks and wells
  • present and proposed utility services and charges
  • the number of homes currently occupied
  • soil and foundation conditions which could cause problems in construction or in using septic tanks
  • the type of title the buyer may receive and when it should be received. 

Federal law requires that you receive this report prior to signing a contract or agreement to buy or lease a lot in this subdivision. However, no federal agency has judged the merits or value of the property.

If you received the report prior to signing a contract or agreement, you may cancel your contract or agreement by giving notice to the seller any time before midnight of the seventh day following the signing of the contract or agreement.

If you did not receive this report before you signed a contract or agreement, you may cancel the contract or agreement any time within two years from the date of signing. 

Don’t fail to ask questions. Don’t buy “sight unseen.” Better yet, hire an InterNACHI Inspector from Cris Insurance Inspections to perform a thorough Home Inspection.


Recommended Links

Eaton Insurance
Phone (561) 966-1848
www.eatoninsurance.net

Furman Insurance
Phone (954) 943-5050
www.furmaninsurance.com

Real Estate Agent
Mark Baker
Phone 561-336-6333
www.buyingpalmbeachhomes.com