This is a hard question to answer, as I don’t number the items I’ve found. I would guess 20-30 items per house are mentioned on average. However, if I find more than three problems with a system, I generally do not detail every occurance (for example: damage was found to the siding at multiple locations vs. Siding damage found on the east near the ground).
Today however, I inspected a 100+ yr old farm house in a rural area. It may have been 1400 Sq Ft with 2 additions. There was not a system in the house without problems.
I thought I must have done something really bad in a past life, my last 4 houses were all old and decrepit. There were so many problems on major systems, I could barely keep up with my camera clicking. But today, I did an inspection on a 4 year old home with not much wrong.
So… 4 older houses at 30-50 reported items average 4 hours to inspect.
1 house at less than 12 reported items-1.5 hours to inspect.
Anyways, it varys so much- I don’t think an average is possable, but age of home seems to be a major factor.
For example, I just finished a report on one of yesterday’s inspections. My standard numbering system would have reported 43 items. However, after going to the subletter numbering system, I got that down to 21 items. Realtors love it the fewer items you report, and in this case, it’s all perception.
Bruce, I haven’t kept count on the items. Like you, I include some cosmetic issues in my reports. (If the client is with me, I simply point them out. If they are not with me, I refer generally to paint issues and specifically to deep scratches, off center lights, etc.)
Do you put cosmetic issues in the Summary (the item functions and doesn not necessarily warrant service is my view)? I do not put cosmetic items in the summary and was wondering about your method.
Generally, I disclaim cosmetic items. However, when I’m inspecting a new house, and particularly a new and expensive house, I report each and every cosmetic defect, even something as small as a missing screw in a hinge. I feel that I owe it to my client(s).
Me too. But have seen occassions where a marble hearth will have a tremendous amount of scratchs. Or a wood floor will have a gouge. Or a kitchen counter will have a deep scratch. Or a metal dishwaher will be dented. I’ve seen paint overspray on entrance doors. Etc. Some of the ‘more significant’ cosmetic issues I put in the report body (not the Summary). New homes only.
Since NC requires a summary with rules about what actually goes in there it is “difficult” on new homes. One way to look at it, the sales people tell the home buyer the house will be “near perfect” or some even say “perfect”.
Is a house habitable when it is full of bad workmanship? It all depends on the buyer… the buyer does not even have to buy it if it is not representative of what they contracted to buy. I have many clients that delay their closing based on my findings. NC is mostly concerned with regular pre-purchase inspections, new homes need that plus a good quality control evaluation.
An inspector has to understand home building to know what to report and what is considered typical, normal and within reason.
New home inspections are and should be different, many inspectors are missing out on business by not being thorough. (Joe, I know you are thorough, I have seen your reports)