Your new house is finished and soon will become your new home. Your builder has scheduled a final walk-thru, commonly called a blue tape walk-thru, with you. He will walk you through the house and show you things like the doors, the toilets, the lights, and other such obvious things. You will be able to mark any cosmetic deficiencies that you notice with blue tape. His subcontractors will then come in and correct some of the deficiencies. This is not an inspection.
An inspector will spend several hours with you walking through the house during the final inspection. He will help you find and mark the cosmetic deficiencies. All appliances should be installed and operational at this time. This includes heating, cooling, water heaters, and kitchen appliances. Water service and all electrical breakers should be on.
Some of the items that are checked:
- Is the main water shut off valve present and accessible?
- Are the expansion joints in the brick veneer properly located?
- Are the expansion joints in the brick veneer clear of mortar?
- Are there properly spaced weep holes in the masonry veneer?
- Does the stucco veneer have a weep screed at the base?
- Is there adequate space between the exterior wall covering and the ground?
- Is the service entrance panel properly grounded and bonded?
- Is the adequate clear working space at all electrical panels?
- Is the A/C condensing unit properly elevated.
- Is there proper overcurrent protection for the A/C condensing unit?
- Is the water pressure within acceptable limits?
- Are the doors and windows properly flashed?
- Does the stove accurately heat?
- Does the microwave oven leak?
- Is the hot water within acceptable temperature range?
- Does the stove have an anti-tip device?
- Are the required receptacles GFCI protected?
- Are smoke alarms installed at the required locations?
- Does the water heater have a vacuum breaker and expansion tank?
- Is there proper combustion/dilution air at the gas appliances?
- Are there ant water leaks?
- Are there any gas leaks?
- Is there proper load path and lateral support at wood decks?
There are a few of the things that are looked at during a final inspection. It is a whole lot more than just cosmetics. This inspection is best performed the day before the “blue tape” walk-thru. Be prepared for that walk-thru by hiring an inspector that will inspect for you.
Author Larry Wedige (TREC#6060) of LarryInspects Home Inspection Service in San Antonio Texas is licensed by the State of Texas as a Professional Real Estate Inspector and has over 18 years of home inspection experience and over 50 years of home building and remodeling experience. He has taught the home inspection curriculum at San Antonio College and exceeds the required hours of continuing education yearly. Some of the information here may not be applicable to your area. Review this information with your engineer or inspector for further details.