Northern Virginia Home Inspection Service
We are Your Trusted Partner for Comprehensive Home Inspections in Northern Virginia
Northern Virginia real estate inventory is low, prices are still rising, and a home inspection is more crucial than ever. Our goal is to help guide you from excited and nervous to empowered and confident.
An informed decision is a good decision. Simply put, we want you to feel good about your next move – whether that means moving forward or walking away from the home.
Your inspection experience has two components – a professional home inspection and detailed home inspection report. So, we mastered the art of both. Not only do we find major issues, but we convey them in a detailed report without overwhelming you with too much information.
Embracing the Charm and Challenges of Northern Virginia’s Real Estate
Northern Virginia’s real estate landscape is diverse, encompassing historic and older homes, modern high-rise condos, luxury mansions, and everything in between. Plus, Northern Virginia homes face its unique set of challenges. Likewise, your home inspection should reflect the specific trends in Northern Virginia.
Historic Significance: Many homes in our area have a rich history. So, pay special attention to the unique aspects of historic homes, from colonial-era craftsmanship to mid-century modern designs.
Radon Gas: Most areas in Northern Virginia are in Zones 1 and 2 on the EPA’s radon risk map. These are the high risk and moderate risk zones. For example, Falls Church, Fairfax County, Manassas, Stafford, and Spotsylvania are all in the highest risk zone. And Loudoun County, Prince William County and Arlington County are in the Moderate risk zone.
Termites: The entire Northern Virginia area is at risk for termite infestations. Specifically, the Eastern Subterranean Termite is prolific in the area. Plus, to make matters worse, the mild climate in Northern Virginia means termites are active all year long.
Your Home Inspection Will Include
Our home inspection process is designed to be thorough, transparent, and educational. We cover many aspects of your potential future home, providing detailed insights and observations about the major systems and components. You can also check out our full SOP here.
We walk any roof that is safe as we believe that is the only way to get the most detailed information. We inspect the roof covering materials, flashing, penetrations, and chimneys when present.
We inspect the siding, flashing, and trim; all exterior doors, decks, stoops, steps, stairs, porches, railings, eaves, soffits and fascias. We check a representative number of windows; the vegetation, surface drainage, and retaining walls when these are likely to adversely affect the structure.
Foundation and Structure Inspection
Our thorough inspection includes the foundation, the basement, the crawlspace and report observed indications of active water penetration. We inspect for wood in contact with or near the soil, and report observed indications of possible foundation movement, such as sheetrock cracks, brick cracks, out-of-square door frames, and unlevel floors. We inspect and report on any observed cutting, notching, and boring of framing members that may, in the inspector’s opinion, present a structural or safety concern.
Heating and Cooling Systems
The heating system inspection includes identifying and describing the energy source, and checking the operation. We also inspect the central cooling equipment using normal operating controls and report on air conditioning systems that do not function as intended. Plus, we inspect the visible distribution methods for deficiencies and visible venting methods for improper or deficient installations.
Plumbing consists of the water heater, including combustion air, venting, connections, energy sources, seismic bracing, and verifying the presence or absence of TPRVs. We flush all toilets and run water in sinks, tubs, and showers. While doing so, we inspect the interior water supply including all fixtures and faucets; inspect the drain, waste, and vent systems, including all fixtures. We describe any visible fuel storage systems; inspect the drainage sump pumps and test pumps with accessible floats; inspect and describe the water supply, drain, waste, and main fuel shut-off valves, as well as the location of the water main and main fuel shut-off valves; inspect and determine if the water supply is public or private.
We inspect the service line, the meter box, the main disconnect and determine the rating of the service amperage. Inside, we inspect panels, breakers, and fuses, the service grounding, and bonding, a representative sampling of switches, receptacles, light fixtures, AFCI receptacles, and test all GFCI receptacles and GFCI circuit breakers observed and deemed to be GFCI’s during the inspection and report on any GFCI-tested receptacles in which power is not present, polarity is incorrect, the receptacle is not grounded, is not secured to the wall, the cover is not in place, the ground fault circuit interrupter devices are not properly installed or do not operate properly, or evidence of arcing or excessive heat is present. We inspect the service entrance conductors and the condition of their sheathing. We report the absence of smoke detectors and report the presence of solid conductor aluminum electrical wiring if readily visible.
Insulation and Ventilation
We inspect the insulation in unfinished spaces, the ventilation of attic spaces, mechanical ventilation systems, and report on the general absence or lack of insulation and ventilation in unfinished spaces.
We inspect the walls, ceiling, and floors; steps, stairways, balconies, and railings; counters and a representative number of installed cabinets; a representative number of doors and windows; report on signs of abnormal or harmful water penetration into the building or signs of abnormal or harmful condensation on building components; garage doors and garage door openers by operating first by remote (if available) and then by the installed automatic door control, and report as in need of repair any installed electronic sensors that are not operable or not installed at proper heights above the garage door, and report as in need of repair any door locks or side ropes that have not been removed or disabled when garage door opener is in use, and report as in need of repair any windows that are obviously fogged or display other evidence of broken seals.
Additional Services: Radon testing, termite inspections, thermal imaging pre-drywall inspections