Fire house! Fire house!

I have a home inspection Jan. 9 th on a home that was built in 2003 and caught fire in 2014. The fire completely destroyed the roof , nothing left from 2nd story top plate to ridge. Apparently from a newspaper article I found on the web, the fire started on the outside of wall from a compost pile and traveled to roof, also states no fire damage on 1st and 2nd floor, but both had heavy water damage. The home was remodeled and sold to private owner and again to rental company , now my client is preparing to buy. My questions are 1. What should I be looking for during my inspection? And 2. Should I put in my report the fire damage ? Thanks.

Roger, I’d be on the lookout for charred wood, smoke smell, water swelling and damage, sagging vinyl siding, permit search for the repairs, melted wiring, etc. and I would put the fire in the report but only if you attribute it to the newspaper that you read it in.


I would hope that the fire is included in the sellers disclosure but maybe not. I would talk to my client about it to see if they are aware of the fire. Then I would do as Larry said and have my spidy senses turned up for moisture and fire damage, as well as any ways it could be covered up.


Agree with the guys above! ^^^^^^^^ :slight_smile:

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Thanks Larry, the remodel , obviously replaced trusses ,sheathing and asphalt shingles. And I assume basically all the interior that could be damaged by water - drywall , insulation , electrical fixtures , receptacles, switches etc… they also replaced all the vinyl siding, trim, soffit and fascia. I found also on the web the listing from 2014 fire damage with 10 pictures! I can compare with the listing, for the present sell. I guess I may be worrying too much about missing something.

Thanks Tony, I would hope it would be disclosed also. Are the realtors required also to reveal that info?

Hi Junior, I do too! Thanks.

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Depends what state you’re in.
In Florida no, unless there’s something that would affect the material value of the property.

End of report note:
**NOTE: Although not part of this bargained for inspection, the client has been given information on a previous fire at the property as a courtesy.

Check the attic well.

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I inspected one of these a few months back. Half the house had burned and half the roof had been replaced. The original roof had water strains throughout the attic and the same was true in the crawlspace. I reported the water stains, but included a note regarding the recent fire and that they should read the seller’s disclosure thoroughly. I did what I could to disclaim the roof because I can’t tell the difference between a leak caused by a faulty roof or water stain from the firefighters. I also encouraged the buyers to find out what sort of warranties from the various contractors that did the repairs might be transferable and to get written confirmation of such protections prior to closing.
In general, the electrical should have been replaced after the fire (even if the conductors didn’t burn they were doused in water which can cause them to deteriorate under the insulation) and this include the breakers. I think they can keep the electrical receptacles.
Anyway, have fun - it should be a good learning experience, it was for me.

Thanks so much for all the replies. There was a disclosure from the seller, my client was concerned about the roof and foundation. The roof structure was completely replaced, all interior including electrical and hvac. However the subflooring (OSB) was not replaced, only in the 1st floor mechanical room was the sheathing visible, and in every room the floor squeaked severely . I put that in the report and explained to my client that I believe it was from the water damage and ws probably going to get worse!. Thanks again for all the help.

If you locate reconstruction permits you can use those as a basis for inquiry if the information hasn’t already been disclosed, check the listing first you may have nothing to worry about.