Category Archives: Palm Beach Home Inspector

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Home Inspection and What To Expect

Home Inspection is a non-invasive visual examination of the condition of a home, often in connection with the sale of that home.

Home Inspection may include any combination of mechanical, structural, electrical, combination of mechanical, structural, electrical, plumbing, or other essential systems or portions of plumbing, or other essential systems or portions of the home.

What is non-invasive Home Inspections, inspector can only report on what can be seen, given reasonable access. The Home Inspection will not reveal every issue that exists or ever could exist, but only those material defects observed on the date of the inspection.

A material defect is a specific issue with a system or component of a residential property that may have a significant, adverse impact on the value of the property, or that poses an unreasonable risk to people.  The fact that a system or component is near, at or beyond the end of its normal useful life is not, in itself, a material defect.

For example, a cracked foundation or a dangerous electrical condition would constitute an unreasonable risk to people, but a roof covering that had exceeded its intended lifespan would not, unless it was also showing signs of leakage.

Home Inspection report identify in written format, all defects within specific systems and components defined by the Inspection Standards that are both observed and deemed material by your inspector.  Inspection reports may include additional comments and recommendations.

The Home Inspection covers the house itself and that part of the property which has a direct impact on the building. An example of some of the items inspected would be:

  • Attic
  • Roof
  • Exterior
  • Exterior Grounds
  • Heating/Cooling
  • Electrical
  • Interior
  • Plumbing
  • Safety Issues

 After the completion of your Home Inspection, our office will prepare a detailed Home Inspection Report for your property.


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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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10 Important questions to ask the Home Inspector

1.  Do you participate in Continuing Education programs to keep your expertise up to date?

Yes, Florida Home Inspectors are required to have 14 CEU’S yearly. Some must be on certain topics such as: Roof Covering, HVAC.

2.  Do you maintain a membership in a Professional Home Inspection Association? If so, which one?

We are Internachi Certified, Internachi is the most well  known but There are several different home inspection association’s out there.

3. When will I get my report from my Home Inspector?

The Inspector will fill out a form and it will be emailed to you and your agent. We try to do this within 24 hours of the Inspection.  

4. What does the Inspection cover?

Depends on the Inspection. Check out OUR Inspections page and it will tell you about what the Inspection you need covers.

5. How long have you been doing  Home Inspections?

We have been doing Home Inspections for 15 years in South Florida.

6. Do you work for me, my agent or the Insurance Company?

 You. You hire us to come and do the Inspection. We work for our client’s ONLY. We do follow all rules and regulations by the Insurance Company’s.

7. Are you Licensed, bonded and Insured?

Yes, I would never recommend using a Business who is not licensed, bonded or insured.

8. Do you preform the repairs?

No, we DO NOT preform any repairs. We may be able to help recommend a Business.

9. Will your Inspection meet recognized standards?

Yes, our Inspection goes above and beyond regular standards and even exceeds recognized standards.

10. Will I be able to attend the Inspection?

Yes, we encourage you to be there. Sometimes, if something needs to be fixed or replaced it is easier to show you then try to explain it over the phone.

 


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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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Buying a home? The process can be stressful.

Buying a home? The process can be stressful.  A home inspection is supposed to give you peace of mind, but often has the opposite effect.  You will be asked to absorb a lot of information in a short time.  This often includes a written report, a checklist, photographs and what the inspector himself says during the inspection.  All this, combined with the seller’s disclosure and what you notice yourself, makes the experience even more overwhelming.  What should you do?

Relax.  Most of your inspection will be maintenance recommendations, life expectancies for various systems and components, and minor imperfections. These are useful to know about.

However, the issues that really matter will fall into four categories:

Attic InspectionsAttic inspections

 Major defects –  example: of this would be a structural failure

Things that lead to major defects – example: such as a small roof-flashing leak

Things that may hinder your ability to finance, legally occupy, or insure the home

Safety hazards, such as an exposed, live buss bar at the electrical panel

Anything in these categories should be addressed.  Often, a serious problem can be corrected inexpensively to protect both life and property (especially in categories 2 and 4).

Most sellers are honest and are often surprised to learn of defects uncovered during an inspection.  Realize that sellers are under no obligation to repair everything mentioned in the report.  

Keep things in perspective.  Do not kill your deal over things that do not matter.  It is inappropriate to demand that a seller address deferred maintenance, conditions already listed on the seller’s disclosure.


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Ventless Fireplace Home Safety Tips

Ventless fireplace vent into hte living spaceVentless fireplace Safety Tips

During production, installation or servicing, a gas leak can be created

The contractor may accidentally plug the burner ports while spreading ceramic tile over the burners, or they may be painted over at the factory. The resulting unbalanced burn will create excessive carbon monoxide

 Dust, carpet lint and pet hair can gradually choke off the fireplace’s air supply, leading to incomplete combustion and high amounts of CO (carbon monoxide) that are vented into the living space

Excessive CO (carbon monoxide) ventilation or overheating of the unit will result from firing the gas higher than the input rate set by the manufacturer’s specifications. This can be caused by high gas-supply pressure, an incorrect orifice drill size done at the factory, or if the installer gives the customer’s unit a larger flame for aesthetic reasons;

The fireplace is oversize for the square footage of the area to be heated.

The gas burner may develop a crack over time and function erratically, producing high levels of CO (carbon monoxide)

The fireplace contains items other than the artificial logs designed for the unit. Problems caused by the incineration of firewood or other flammable items will be immediate and extreme. A more likely and less obvious hazard is created by adding pebbles, lava rocks, and other non-combustible aesthetic touches to the fireplace, as their exposure to flames will cause an unsafe rise in levels of CO (carbon monoxide)

As these components may fail, it is advisable to install a CO (carbon monoxide) detector near a ventless fireplace and, ideally, in other rooms, as well.

In summary, vent less fireplaces, while attractive and portable, suffer from a design flaw that may allow dangerous gases to enter the living space.


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Home Inspections Palm Beach County

Cris Home Inspections is a full service home inspection company with over 10 years experience in the home inspection field providing Home Inspection Sevices in Palm Beach County. Home inspections we provide:

Home Inspection – A 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. This 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.

4 Point Inspections The 4 Point Inspection is a visual Inspection on the four major components of your home. The 4 Point Inspection was created after Hurricane Andrew hit South Florida in 1992. It has become a requirement for homes, that are 30 years or older.

Citizens Roof Certificate Inspection Anyone with a home that is 25 years old or older trying to renew or get a new Homeowners Insurance Policy, must get a Citizens Roof Certificate Inspection to prove that the roof is expected to last at least another 3 more years.

 

 

Windstorm Mitigation Inspection – Windstorm Mitigation Inspection is the only inspection that is almost always going to result in some level of insurance discount on your insurance policy premium. A Windstorm Mitigation Inspection is for homeowners that are trying to reduce their Home Insurance rates up to 50% off the original policy premium.

 


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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