Home Inspections 101

As homes are bought and sold, they generally get inspected. Inspections generally fall into two categories, a general home inspection and the WDO (Wood Destroying Organism) inspection. These inspections serve different purposes.

The general home inspection is just that. A ‘once over’ of the property to point out issues, both large and small, that a trained eye may notice but a home buyer might not. The average home buyer will not crawl under a home, nor into the attic, with the knowledge of what to look for and where to look for it.

The general home inspection will note the age of the roof, major systems such as the water heater and HVAC, and note other items of various levels of importance. Some noted items are simply informational, not cause for alarm. It is nice to have a list of all observed items and then the buyer can decide whether this affects their interest in a home. Maybe the seller will ask the buyer to repair some of the items as part of their negotiation, or maybe the list of items found is pretty normal for a home of that age and both parties decide to move forward.

The WDO report is generally required by the purchasing parties mortgage company. They do not want to issue financing on a property that is disintegrating due to rot and pest damage. While termites are the ‘organism’ that comes to mind for most when it comes to destroying wood, it is far from alone. Water will find its way into cracks and joints in wood, behind failing paint and caulk, and begin to soften wood. Algae, fungi and other ‘organisms’ join the effort, and the wood begins to decay. Over time, that decay can become significant.

The WDO report is focused specifically on this kind of damage. WDO issues must be resolved, and be re-inspected, for the buyers financing company to go to settlement. Common WDO issues include door trim and jamb damage, fascia repairs, and rotten boards stairs on decks. More significant issues can include rotten siding, soffit repairs, and chimney repairs. Plywood siding is very common in Jacksonville, and some of it is in pretty rough shape. Moisture delaminates the plywood, starting at the bottom and working up. There is no way to ‘repair’ damaged plywood siding, it must be replaced.

Inspections are intended to expose issues, and potential issues. A seller may not be aware of an issue in their crawlspace, or they may be aware and acting in bad faith. Inspections surface the issue, so all parties are aware. They can then negotiate a financial arrangement, or the buyer can walk away.

The big challenge, once the inspection has been completed and work needs to be one, is who can you trust. Mr. Handyman is your Professional, Safe and Reliable solution for many of the items that will surface on both a general home inspection and a WDO inspection report. To be clear, we are not the company to perform the inspections, but we can resolve many of the issues found during the inspection.

We are a licensed General Contractor and do a lot of wood rot repairs. We understand what will be re-inspected and can confidently resolve these issues, so your closing date is not at risk. When you do not know who to call, call Mr. Handyman – there’s simply no one like us!