I’m wondering what may have caused these spiderweb cracks observed on an inspection today. Spalling is usually not as “spiderweb” like, and the crown wasn’t any worse than lots of others I’ve seen.
My guess is the homeowner may have put some sort of sealant on the blocks, and the heat from the chimney caused the cracking.
Maybe a past chimney fire that seller “forgot” to disclose? The home has been vacant for more than a year.