Buying a home is a significant investment, and a thorough home inspection is a crucial part of the process. A standard home inspection can help identify any issues or concerns with the property. Still, there are some ancillary inspection services that homebuyers may want to consider adding to their inspection.
Ancillary inspection services, such as mold testing, radon testing, water testing, wood-destroying insect inspections, underground oil tank detection, and lead paint testing, provide additional information about the property’s condition and potential health hazards.
This blog post explores the benefits of these ancillary services and how they add value to the home inspection process. By going the extra mile and investing in these additional services, homebuyers will have greater peace of mind and make more informed decisions about their investment.
Standard Home Inspection Services
A standard home inspection provides a detailed overview of the property’s condition and potential issues that may need to be remedied before the sale. A professional inspector will thoroughly inspect the home’s interior and exterior, looking for any signs of damage or maintenance needs. The inspector will examine the roof, plumbing and electrical systems, foundation, walls, and ceilings. A home inspection does not include assessments for termites, radon gas, and environmental hazards; these are ancillary services.
Ancillary Inspection Services
Adding ancillary services to a home inspection offers benefits to a homebuyer. These services require special tools and expertise and identify potential issues beyond the scope of a standard inspection.
Some ancillary inspection services that home inspectors offer include radon testing, mold inspections/testing, termite/WDO inspections, well water testing, underground oil tank detection, and lead paint testing. By adding ancillary services to your home inspection, you will have a more comprehensive understanding of the overall condition of your home and any risks involved with your purchase.
Mold Inspection and Testing
Some of the most essential ancillary inspection services are mold inspections and testing to avoid health problems and property damage. A home inspector will use specialized air and surface sampling equipment to detect mold spores. These samples are then sent to a laboratory for analysis, where the lab determines the type and concentration of mold present so that the problem can be remediated effectively.
Mold can have serious health implications, causing respiratory issues, headaches, and allergies, making it critical to identify and address a mold problem as soon as possible. Hiring a professional mold inspection and testing service is an investment in your health and the home’s long-term value.
Radon is a radioactive gas produced from the breakdown of uranium in soil, rock, and water. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), it is the second leading cause of lung cancer in the United States after smoking. It is colorless, odorless, and tasteless, which makes it impossible to detect without specialized equipment. Every house should undergo radon testing, especially before a home purchase.
Many home inspectors offer professional radon testing, making it easy to add a radon test to a home inspection for an extra fee. Even if the sellers have performed a radon test in the past showing low levels, it is still a good idea to test the home again. Variables like renovations can cause radon levels to change over time.
A high radon reading is rarely a reason for a buyer to back out of a purchase. If the test reveals levels at or over the EPA’s action level, 4.0 PCi/L, the buyer can negotiate for installing a radon mitigation system. The cost of a radon test is a small price to pay to safeguard your family’s health.
Termites are destructive pests that can severely damage the structure of your home. Termites cause more than $5 billion in property damage yearly in the United States. Adding a termite/WDO inspection to your home inspection may save you from expensive repairs and future property damage.
A termite/WDO inspection detects early signs of infestation and identifies the type and extent of damage already done. This allows homeowners to take necessary steps for prevention and control while minimizing the potential damage. These inspections can also alert potential buyers about advanced termite/WDO infestations and damage, enabling them to negotiate the price and know what they are getting into with their new property.
A standard home inspection does not include a detailed pest inspection, so these ancillary inspection services are necessary to identify signs of termites and infestations.
When buying a house, ensure that the water supply in your new home is safe and clean for you and your family to use. A professional water testing service will provide peace of mind by analyzing the water from various sources within your home, including taps, showers, and appliances. Whether the water source is from a municipality or a well, your water may have unhealthy contaminants.
Water testing services detect harmful pollutants such as lead, bacteria, and arsenic, which pose serious health risks if undetected. The testing process also evaluates the water’s physical properties, like pH levels, hardness, and mineral content.
Based on the results, experts will provide tailored recommendations on the best water treatment solutions. By investing in professional water testing, you can make an informed decision about what sort of treatment is necessary to ensure that your home’s water is of the highest quality.
Ancillary Inspection Services for Underground Oil Tank Detection
Underground oil tanks often go undetected in older homes and can affect the property’s and its inhabitants’ safety. Some home inspectors offer underground oil tank detection services to assess potential risks.
These services use advanced technology such as ground penetrating radar (GPR) and electromagnetics to determine the location of underground oil tanks, piping, and other equipment. These services can provide peace of mind while saving homeowners thousands of dollars in potential cleanup and remediation costs.
In addition, some insurance companies require underground oil tank testing before providing coverage, making it a necessary step for many homebuyers. By adding an underground oil tank detection service to your home inspection, homebuyers can make an informed decision and ensure the safety of their investment.
Lead Paint Testing
Lead paint testing in older homes is a crucial step in ensuring the safety and well-being of the occupants. Homes built before 1978 are more likely to contain lead-based paint, which can be harmful if ingested or inhaled. Lead-based paint was banned for residential use in 1978 due to its health hazards. However, homes built before this date will likely have several layers of lead-based paint.
Lead paint becomes especially hazardous when performing renovation work involving cutting, scraping, or drilling walls, which can release toxic paint particles into the air. The test results will indicate the lead level in the paint, and the inspector will suggest the steps for lead paint removal or remediation. Lead paint testing in older homes can help prevent health risks associated with exposure to lead-based paint, especially for children and pregnant women.
From testing for mold to detecting underground oil tanks, these services provide essential insights into the condition of a property that may not be evident during a standard home inspection. They help identify potential issues and hazards and provide peace of mind and greater confidence when purchasing a home. By partnering with a trusted and experienced home inspection company offering various ancillary services, homebuyers can get all the information they need to make an informed decision. When booking a home inspection, consider adding the above ancillary inspection services.