Home Inspection & Education – Serving Winchester and Northern Virginia
- For prospective homeowners.
- Get to know the property and ask questions.
- The easy-to-read report empowers you to make the best decision.
- For current homeowners.
- Uncover safety concerns and how to resolve them.
- On-site reporting and consultation customized to your home needs.
What should you expect during your Home Inspection?
Primarily, our goal is to provide as much information about a house as possible, putting the power of our experience into the hands of our customers so they can make well-informed decisions during the buying process.
We encourage home-buyers to be present whenever possible and to ask as many questions as they can.
Our process is as follows. During a home inspection, the inspector will:
- Assess the condition of a house including its roof, structural integrity, and exterior.
- Inspect the electrical system, heating and cooling, plumbing, insulation, and interior finishes.
After the on-site inspection, buyers get a report that describes the home’s systems and details any limitations encountered during the home inspection. The report also makes recommendations for improvement for each category.
We design our reports so that buyers can easily understand them. They make use of pictures, diagrams, and outside links for the buyer’s reference.
A Home Review is a convenient way to proactively protect your house – as the place where your family lives and as an important investment.
A Home Review is exactly what it sounds like, a review of your home’s major systems.
You inspect your car yearly. Houses are a much greater investment. When was the last time that you had a home inspection? Your house doesn’t roll down the highway at 70 mph, but it can pose just as many risks as an unsafe car.
Home inspectors find safety hazards all the time, so there is no reason to limit this expertise to those buying a house.
What to Expect at A Home Review
A Home Review is for current homeowners. We have designed this program to uncover safety concerns, assess damage to the house and its mechanical systems, and prioritize repair work. We give priority to safety first, then comfort, and then aesthetics.
Like a home inspection, when we perform a Home Review, it is a limited visual inspection. The review will not include the disassembling of the house or appliances. Reporting and consultation take place on-site.
On a regular basis, I find exposed live wiring, roof leaks, and plumbing issues that homeowners never knew existed. Dangerous or damaging conditions can develop for months, even years, before you begin to notice.
So, remember that it is easier and less expensive to fix a lot of the damage and wear on a house the earlier you diagnose it.
A Note: Home reviews are not home inspections as defined by the Virginia Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation and the American Society of Home Inspectors.
Residential Radon Testing
The EPA recommends testing for radon at each real estate transaction. This area of Virginia is designated as Level 1 for radon exposure.
Radon is a toxic, odorless, colorless gas that can cause serious health issues. It is a known carcinogen and the second leading cause of lung cancer after smoking.
To determine radon levels in a home, we deploy a measurement device for a minimum of 48-hours, then collect and analyze the results.
With experience as a classroom teacher, I am able to offer classes and seminars on the various systems at work in a home for either real estate professionals or homeowners. Houses are a collection of many different systems that all work together to keep you safe and comfortable. However, understanding how these systems function and how to care for them can be intimidating, even confusing.
The good news is that even a small investment of time learning about systems such as roofing, heating/cooling, and plumbing can pay huge dividends when it comes to assessing damage and wear. In my experience, the sooner you diagnose a problem, the less expensive and extensive the repairs will be.
Home Education Topics
Popular topics for classes and seminars include, but are not limited to:
- Radon gas
- Water management
- The home inspection process
- Energy use
A better understanding of how houses, both modern and historic, function is equally beneficial for agents and homeowners. During the buying process, a basic knowledge of home system can be useful in identifying potential problems and pricey fixes.
Building practices and materials change constantly. They used to build houses by hand and with local materials. Now, builders make many structural components offsite and order the materials from around the world. Old industry standards like lead paint or, more recently, polybutylene plumbing are now considered a liability.
It is my job as an inspector to keep up with these changes and I am happy to share them with you.
How to Book Your Presentation
To get a feel for my style and approach, please visit the collection of Virginia Dwelling blog posts.
Our programs are designed primarily for group settings, but can be tailored for interested home buyers as well. We recommended advanced notice as we tailor each presentation to meet the needs of the group that requested it.
Joe is licensed by the Commonwealth of Virginia (#3380000776) holding New Residential Construction credentials, an ASHI (American Society of Home Inspectors) Certified Inspector, certified AARST-NRPP Residential Radon Measurement Provider (#109096 RT), and currently on the executive board of the Virginia Association of Real Estate Inspectors . He also enjoys writing and teaching about the home inspection industry.
Joe is certified by the AARST-NRPP as a residential radon measurement provider.