Home Inspections for New Construction, Do You Really Need One?
If you’re having a new home built, have you considered having your home inspected by a independent home inspector who doesn’t work for the builder? Do you know when you should you have the home inspection? Or what type of home inspections should be done?
There are three types of inspections associated with new-construction homes: pre-drywall, final, and finally warranty inspections.
Pre-drywall inspection The American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI) has a Standard Of Practice for conducting residential pre-drywall inspections, and this is the standard that we follow. You can find this standard online here: Pre-Drywall Inspection Standard.
The Pre-Drywall Inspection SOP states that this inspection should take place after the following components have been installed: A. Foundation components, B. Floor, wall, and roof structural components, C. Plumbing, electrical, and rough-in components, D. Windows and exterior doors.
These inspections should be completed once all of the above work has been completed and ideally before any of the drywall has been installed. We will work with your builder to make sure we are able to inspect the home at just the right stage.
Final inspection The final inspection is really a standard home inspection and should be done after the home has been completely built. If the builder is running behind on schedule, the home inspection should be re-scheduled. A home inspection conducted too soon in the building process will leave the buyer with a huge punch-list of incomplete items.
The photo below shows a home that was almost completed. The overhead doors still had to be installed, but just about everything else was done.
One-year warranty inspection A one-year warranty inspection, aka 11-month warranty inspection, is also a standard home inspection with a different name. The difference between a one-year warranty inspection and a final inspection is timing. One-year warranty inspections should be conducted before the builder’s one-year warranty is up. The Alberta new home warranty program says that home buyers get a one-year warranty on their home that covers defects in materials and labour.
The vast majority of our one-year warranty inspection clients are people who bought new construction homes without an inspection and later regretted it. They’ve had way more problems with their new home than they had bargained for, and they want to know what else is going on.
Conclusion If you’re having a new home built, get a pre-drywall inspection and a final inspection. If you’re buying a new home that has already been built, get a home inspection. If you’ve already purchased a new home but you skipped the inspection, schedule a one-year warranty inspection before your warranty expires.
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