Monday, November 14, 2016

Inspection Report - What We Found And Didn't Find

We scheduled our inspection as soon as our inspector we had used on our previous two houses was available. We wanted it completed as quickly as possible so we could either retract our offer if we found something terrible. With all of the issues we could spot, we were really worried there was something lurking that we may miss.

The inspection took forever. First, the inspector was late. He had his schedule wrong and didn't have us down for that day. We arrived at the house at 3pm and he finally showed up 4:15. The inspection took over 4 hours. I know I should be glad it was thorough but we were tired and cranky and hungry by the end of it all.

The inspection report showed us mostly things we figured we would find: rotted siding boards, some leaky plumbing, doors that were difficult to open and various other things we consider cosmetic. There were a few odd things. The biggest one was that the hot water heater was outside in a big tin box. 

Heeeey overgrown backyard weeds!
We asked the inspector about it and he said it was weird but not something he hadn't seen before. The assumption is that the old owners didn't want it taking up space in the garage so they moved it out back into what we lovingly refer to as the coffin. There was some standing water in the bottom of the tank but the inspector wasn't sure if that was fluid from that or from rain water. There were so many other things to worry about during the inspection, we kind of forgot about this and never checked to see if the hot water worked.  

All in all, the inspection report was not terrible. There were a lot of problems on the report (78 items in total) but everything seemed manageable from our perspective. We knew we were moving into a house that needed a lot of work, inside and out. We were willing to take on that challenge. 

We decided that there were a few things that needed to be fixed before or shortly after we moved in - most importantly the rotted siding on the house and some pipe collars on the roof. We had a contractor go out and inspect the damage and got a quote from him. We sent that quote to the sellers and they ended up giving us that money in closing costs. Score one for the little guy. So, we moved forward with the purchase, got our financing in order and started the process to sell our house.


Remember when I mentioned the fact that we didn't check the hot water? After we closed, we planned on spending a half day cleaning the house. We got out some buckets to fill with hot water and soap to scrub the house down. We turned on the tap hot water. We checked the gas - it was on. We checked the water heater. We called a plumber. It was broken. 

Over the next 2 days, I had 6 different plumbers out to the house to give us quotes. The first plumber who came out took one look at our situation (movers and stuff everywhere, family everywhere) and quoted us $2400 to replace our 50 gallon water heater. The 5th plumber who came out quoted us $750. What a racket. We ended up using the 5th plumber, who has now become our go-to guy for all of our plumbing needs. He's honest, reasonably priced and has been in the business for 25 years. 

It is really, really stressful to have contractors coming to your house at the same time movers are asking where to put things, your 4 year old is complaining she is bored and your mother is asking where you want your silverware, bowls and cooking supplies to go. 

While we did move on the hottest days of the year, it was a blessing in disguise as we really didn't need hot water that badly (other than to clean). Our wonderful friends let us shower at their house to get all of the moving grime and sweat off. We finally got a new hot water heater on Wednesday. My shower that night was the best shower I have had in my entire life.

Note to all future home buyers - if you're not sure if the hot water heater is working, just turn on the tap and point it to hot. If we had done that, we would have saved ourselves a lot of stress and a lot of money. 

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