Home Inspections

Serving Jacksonville, Orlando and surrounding areas. High value home assessments nationwide.

All our inspectors have earned the Certified Building Consultant™ designation. A Certified Building Consultant™ must hold at least two professional licenses and one national accredited certification to qualify.

Choosing a Home Inspector

If you are buying a home, you will need a professional home inspector to alert you to dangerous conditions or expensive repairs. Often, the buyer simply uses one of the 2 or 3 referrals provided by their realtor. While most realtors have your best interest at heart, they don’t always understand the difference in home inspectors, their qualifications or their product offerings. Often, they refer who they like or who they think has “the best price”. Finding the lowest price is rarely in your best interest. We encourage you to compare the firm’s qualifications.

The secret to a quality home inspector is knowledge and experience. Has your inspector ever built a home? What state licenses or national accredited certifications do they have? Do they carry Errors & Omissions insurance coverage? How long have they been in business? Do they offer any warranties? Florida is full of recent home inspectors with nothing more than a nice website and fake credentials. Look beyond the marketing hype and choose wisely. Read more here.

What Should You Expect From A Home Inspection?

A home inspection is designed to assist in minimizing your risk in purchasing a home. It is not intended to alleviate all risk. Every component and every square inch of the home will not be inspected unless you are willing to devote the time and money for the effort. The typical home inspection allows about 2 hours for most homes under 2500 sf. Your home inspector is tasked with alerting you to major issues in the home which present safety issues or may result in costly repairs in the near future. The home inspector reports on items which are not functional or near the end of its useful life cycle. The inspector does not determine if a component is optimal.

Unless you are purchasing a new home, you should understand there is obsolescence in a home. Unless the home has been properly remodeled, an aged home may have damaged trim, aged roof covering, minor water damage to the exterior, broken window seals, and normal wear and tear. Your home inspector is not tasked with presenting all minor conditions as a punch list of repairs and further, the home inspection should not be used for the purpose of obtaining a price reduction or to make the realtor “look better”.

If you are concerned with cosmetic or normal wear and tear items, that most people can easily see those for themselves, then you should negotiate with the Seller or make your purchase decision accordingly.

If there is a particular component or issue that you are concerned with, you should alert the inspector accordingly before the inspection. We are always happy to address our client’s concerns provided we know of them and can plan accordingly. The inspector may not be able to accommodate requests for specialized testing at the inspection.

A home inspection is not a home warranty. If you are concerned with possible repair costs in owning and maintaining your home, you should purchase a home warranty. Your realtor may recommend a plan or you may consider our home warranty plan which, we feel, is the best plan available. Further, if you purchase our plan, you will get 18 Months of coverage for the price of 12. See our home warranty plan here.

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. Are you insured?

We carry $1 million in General Liability and $1 million in Errors & Omissions coverage
We maintain commercial liability insurance on all of our inspection vehicles.

2. What qualifications do you have?

We hold many state licenses and national certifications.

Please see below:

Building Related

Florida Licensed Home Inspector
Florida Certified General Contractor
FL Certified Underground Utilities Contractor
Certified EIFS/Stucco Inspector (EDI)
Certified Pool Operator (NPSF)
Certified Tile Roof Installer, (Tile Roofing Institute)
CertainTeed Master Shingle Installer/Inspector
Home Builder with over 30 years experience

Environmental Related

Florida Licensed Mold Assessor
Florida Licensed Radon Measurement Technician
Certified Indoor Environmental Consultant
Certified Lead Inspector

Pest/Termite Related

Florida Licensed Pest Control Operator
UF/PMU Expert in Termite Management
Associate Certified Entomologist (ESA)

3. Do you offer gap warranties and why are they important? We offer several short term, gap warranties with our home inspection. We feel they provide real value to our customers.

It is possible a component which we found to be functional at the inspection could fail shortly after you occupy the home. When we inspect a vacant home, it has not been “under load”, meaning our inspection may not be sufficient to demonstrate possible issues such as downstream drainage issues which may not become apparent until the home is loaded (occupied). Plumbing may leak, appliances may fail, a roof leak may occur, the AC can fail – components fail and often do so without any visible warning. This does not mean we did not conduct a good home inspection and most inspectors would simply advise they are not responsible for the issue. While our job is to protect you against major issues, we also recognize it can be frustrating to discover an issue shortly after you move in. Our gap warranties will assist with any needed repairs and in many cases, it will completely cover them at no cost to you. We pay for these warranties for your benefit and they are administered by a third party, Residential Warranty Services. You may review our gap warranties here.

4. How long have you been a home inspector? We conducted our first, fee paid, home inspection in 1986.

5. How many home inspections have you performed? We have completed over 15,000 home inspections.

6. How long does a home inspection take? It depends upon the size, age, type of construction and condition. A typical 2000 sf, slab home (3/2/2) will take between 1.5 to 2 hours unless you have ordered additional services. We may assign 2-3 inspectors to larger or older homes to keep the inspection within the same time frame.

7. Do you inspect sprinkler systems? We can provide a limited inspection but we do not encourage it and we will not warrant it. Almost all sprinkler systems need repair or system calibration. You are better served applying the sprinkler fee to repairs by a licensed sprinkler technician after closing. Most Sellers will not make repairs to sprinkler systems. As a courtesy, we verify if the controller works and the zones supply water. You should understand a proper sprinkler system inspection will take 1 to 2 hours.

If the other home inspector you are considering promises to “inspect the sprinkler system”, you should ask yourself, “if he has allotted 2 hours to inspecting the whole job, which part of the home or sprinkler system is he not inspecting?” We know, many of our competitors promise to include the sprinkler system for the fee quoted and we also know, they are lying to you. They only plan to turn it on and take a couple of photos of it working and that is not a proper evaluation/inspection. We simply want to be upfront and honest with you.

Home inspectors are not licensed irrigation or sprinkler contractors and all we can generally tell you is “it’s working” or “it’s not working”. We want you to understand one thing – they all need repair and calibration and almost every home we inspect has above grade sprinkler heads in contact with the structure which we will advise to have replaced. If you see water staining on your home, the sprinkler system needs repair. If you see brown patches of grass or shriveled up landscaping, the sprinkler system needs repair. If fish are living in your lawn, the sprinkler system needs repair. What are the chances your sprinkler system needs repair? 99.9% based on over 15,000 home inspections.

7a. Do you inspect sprinkler systems in new homes? See answer above. What are the chances your “brand new” sprinkler system needs repair? 100% based on over 2500 new home inspections.

8. Do you inspect pools and spas? We provide a limited inspection designed to alert you to major issues with the inground pool/spa or associated equipment. While we are Certified Pool Operators, we recommend you have the system evaluated by a local licensed pool service contractor who has factory training in the equipment present.

We do not offer any warranty or guarantee with our inspection. Like sprinkler systems, we understand almost every home inspector is offering “pool inspections” with your home inspection. What you need to understand is they rarely have any training in construction or operation of pools and they will be providing a visual only inspection on components you can most likely see for yourself. While our inspectors are trained and certified for pool inspection, we want you to understand we are not factory trained on the equipment nor do we have the proper testing equipment. Our inspection is designed to simply alert you to items which are deficient. This may be good enough to assist you in determining if you want to purchase the home but it should not be construed as a complete analysis of the pool system. We are happy to assist you but you won’t hurt our feelings if you have the pool inspected by a competent local service contractor.

9. Do you perform background checks on your inspectors? Yes. All of our employees are subjected to an independent, third party background check for criminal history and driving records. Licensed inspectors are approved by the Department of Business & Professional Regulation which includes a criminal record search.

10. Are your inspectors uniformed? Yes, all inspectors will show up wearing a company issued uniform shirt and all employees drive company branded vehicles. We do not use subcontractors or allow personal vehicle use. Our inspectors are easily identifiable for your protection and safety.

11. Do you use thermal imaging in your inspection? Yes, every inspector uses thermal cameras to assist in our inspection. Standard components we test with thermal imaging are windows, doors, AC ducts, water heaters, and air handlers. You should understand there are limitations to thermal imaging which many inspectors fail to either understand or fail to inform you of.

A thermal camera’s usefulness depends upon several key components:
a. The type of camera.
b. The knowledge and training of the inspector in using the technology.
c. The environment it is being used in and what it is being used for.

A thorough building analysis by thermal imaging requires a controlled environment and several hours of time. You will not get that level of inspection in a typical home inspection for a real estate transaction, regardless of what the other home inspector claims.

We know many home inspectors market “thermal imaging” as a means of “seeing behind walls” or for its ability to “locate hidden moisture” and both statements are false and misleading. Thermal cameras do not detect moisture and they do not “see through walls” like an x-ray. Thermal cameras detect temperature differences in building components and nothing more. We find false reporting almost weekly relating to a home inspector identifying missing insulation, moisture or roof leaks based on a thermal image. A thermal camera is simply one tool in an inspector’s bag and every suspected image must be followed up with additional testing. Many inspectors use cheap $600 cameras and they are rarely sufficient to identify real issues. We inventory a range of thermal cameras, each designed for a specific task based on its resolution. Our minimum camera is the Flir E8.

12. What information do you provide in your home inspection? First of all, we do not want you to buy a money pit or a home with significant surprises. You deserve to understand the overall condition of the home and its major components.

You should understand aged homes will almost always have some level of deferred maintenance or obsolescence. Most people buy a home for the location and they are willing to buy a home with general wear and tear to get the location they prefer. If you want a perfect home, you should shop for a new home which includes a new home warranty although you should understand we rarely find a new home that doesn’t have some level of cosmetic deficiency.

We strive to alert you to major components which are not functional or are near the end of their expected life cycle. Replacing 40 SQ of roof can be expensive and we want you to know if that is needed. Structural damage in crawlspaces, wall or truss systems, faulty electrical panels, defective garage doors, major wood rot/decay, window failure, defective AC systems, aged or faulty plumbing, unsafe wiring or foundation issues generally top the list of items we are concerned with. While we may also report other, more minor issues, our primary task is to alert you to major component issues.

13. Can I use your report to negotiate repairs/price reduction from the Seller? Yes, you may. However, we want you to understand this is not the primary reason for your home inspection. The home inspection is a due diligence inspection to protect from unknown and significant issues you may not be able to see or understand for yourself.

Your home inspector is not there to help you get a price reduction or to make the realtor look good; we are there to protect you from major expenses you may not know about. If we can prevent you from incurring a major loss, we have done our job.
We do not attempt to provide a “punch list” of all items which may need some level of repair or those which are associated with normal wear and tear or obsolescence in a home of this age. Not all Sellers are willing to make minor repairs and most homes are sold “As Is”.

If you believe you can get any and all repairs made, or you want a list of any deficiency noted, you should alert us prior to the inspection. An additional fee will most likely be required.

Beware of home inspectors promising a punch list of all deficiencies over the phone; most of them will exclude this in their contract if they have any sense at all. You should also understand most insurance carriers exclude the first $2500 to $5000 in an Errors & Omissions policy so this home inspector may be liable for “unreported” minor deficiencies if they promise to report them and they have an E&O policy. While a home inspector has a fiduciary duty to protect your interest in accordance to the Florida Standard of Practice, inspectors also have a legal duty to not harm the Seller irresponsibly. An inspector who exaggerates an issue or misrepresents the severity or makes false claims of failure may be subject to legal claim by the Seller, and should be.

14. How long does it take to get my report? Most reports are submitted within 24 hours of the inspection, if not the same day. Major issues we uncover may take a little longer to research or report on. We will alert you if this occurs.