Buying Home Checklist

There is a client called saying that his bath tub just fallen through the floor in his new home (new to him). From the crawlspace up, mold had eaten away the floor. The seller had placed a few 4x4s under the floor to carry everything up long enough to sell the house and get out of town.

I asked if he had the home inspected before he got it. He stated “no, was that important?”

Look for all these things yourself, even if you decide to get a home inspector. Some home inspectors do not look for these items. Some never go to the house.


  • Mold test

The number one issue faced by homeowners is mildew. You learn about in the news. I get a phone from a lawyer gathering info for a law-suit against their real estate agent and a home vendor, every week. The subject is always mildew.


You can get inexpensive mould test kits at


  • Gutters

The number one cause of mold in a home is improperly installed or damaged gutters. They allow water to pour to the walls. And damaging mold to produce within the walls is caused by water. Make sure that the gutters aren’t bent and are level.


This goes back to gutters. This splashes mud against the exterior walls. However, the excessive water seeps into the basis of the house.


  • Plants too close

The new operator, of course, can appropriate this, but did the previous owner allow the crops to trap moisture in the partitions? There should be at least 18 inches between the exterior walls and also the plants.


  • Foundation vents

These vents are designed to let air flow through crawlspaces. This house might not have a crawlspace. When it does, check always the vents. Do they open and close? Potential mold and wood rot problems can result.


  • Sump pump

If there is a sump pump, then there has been extra water in the past. A sump pump needs some water inside anyway, to work. This standing water can direct to mold and termites. Avoid houses with sump pumps.


  • Drainage

Is it true that the yard allow water to flow into the house? Yes that lethal chemical they place in it is going to stop mold to get several years but maybe not forever. This really is a major problem based on lung surgeons.


  • Do attic vents perform?

Is the attic warm? Does not mean they work just since the attic has vents. Motors rust or burn off a fuse.


  • Crusty stuff on basement walls

If you see crusty white stuff on the block in the basement, it signifies long term water problems. That thing is minerals deposited over time by drying dampness. RUN away QUICKLY!


  • Water spots on ceiling

Mold is always held by these. You only have 4-8 hours following a leak before mildew starts to grow. After that, drying will not help.

By all means, hire a home inspector. Don’t use a house inspector recommended by the vendor or their agent. They don’t get potential referrals from the agent, if something negative is said by an inspector about a residence. And make sure that the inspector goes INSIDE the house.

Sounds silly but I’ve been in lawsuits where the inspector did all his function in the yard or even worse, from his car.