Stairs

Structural Integrity:  All stairs must be kept structurally sound. Don’t forget to examine the basement stairs.  Check the area where they meet the floor and where they are attached to the floor joists above. Stair Width and Clearance:  Stairways should have a minimum headroom of 6 feet and 8 inches, and width of 3 feet. Treads and…

Interior, Exterior, and Garage Doors

Interior Doors:  Monitor the condition of your home’s doors and door frames, including the interior of entrance doors and storm doors. Check their hardware for finish, wear, and proper functioning. Sticking doors or out-of-square frames may indicate house settlement, which is normal. Exterior Doors:  Exterior doors should be checked often for their condition, operation, and the functionality…

Crawlspace Safety

Crawlspaces are notorious for the nasty discoveries made there by homeowners, inspectors, and home remodelers, and it isn’t hard to figure out why; for one thing, their cool, dark environment attracts undesirable pests and can promote dangerous conditions. And since the crawlspace is mostly unmonitored, hazards can breed there unchecked for a long time.  Never enter a…

Landscaping

Well-maintained landscaping and other improvements are important for the enjoyment of a healthy and durable property. Plants, Trees & Shrubs:  Check the location and condition of all trees and shrubbery. Those that are overgrown should be pruned or trimmed. Where trees or bushes have overgrown, complete removal may be necessary. Trees need to be trimmed.  Overhanging…

Property Drainage

Making sure that your property is sloped to allow proper drainage can mean the difference between a trouble-free rainy season and a flooded basement a few times a year.  Unwanted moisture intrusion—even at a level not serious enough to cause interior flooding—can create insidious problems that will be difficult to completely eliminate, such as weakened…