9 Common Home Inspection Problems in Virginia

If you’re looking to buy a house in Virginia, the home inspection process can help you avoid making a bad investment, identify issues that could be hazardous to you and your family, and even allow you to negotiate a better deal with the seller.

Of course, very few inspection reports come back clean. Here are nine of the most common home inspection problems in Virginia!

1. HVAC Issues

Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning are essential systems, as they regulate temperature and air quality throughout the home.

Virginia’s winters are often mild, but the state’s summers are quite hot, and a faulty air conditioning system can cause a great deal of discomfort. There are several common AC issues that may be uncovered during a home inspection—ranging from refrigerant leaks to thermostat issues.

2. Mold and Mildew

Similarly, Virginia’s often-humid weather can allow moisture to become trapped within homes—causing mold and mildew to develop.

Basements are especially prone to mold and mildew growth, as they are not as regularly maintained as other rooms in the home. Additionally, leaks from upper levels can cause water to flow down to the basement level.

3. Energy Inefficiency

Poor energy efficiency is common in older homes that haven’t been recently updated or renovated. Unfortunately, it’s a problem that can lead to compounded issues down the road.

Beyond causing you and your family discomfort during the hot summer months and frigid winter months, poor insulation puts pressure on your HVAC systems. As a result, your energy bill may be higher than most, and your systems may break down prematurely. Not to mention, poor insulation makes your home even more susceptible to mold and mildew.

4. Roof Damage

Approximately 19.7% of inspection issues are roof-related, according to a Porch’s survey of 998 homebuyers.

Virginia certainly isn’t immune to these issues either, as the state’s harsh weather is known to wreak havoc on older roofs in particular. Only nine states are hit by more hurricanes than Virginia.

While issues such as blistering and missing shingles aren’t always cause for concern, leaks, holes, and more severe structural damage should be taken seriously. A new roof is one of the costliest repairs!

5. Electrical Problems

There are many older homes in Virginia, many of which have outdated electrical systems. For this reason, your inspector might encounter faulty wiring when walking a property.

As many of these issues have a direct impact on your safety, they should be addressed prior to purchasing and occupying into a new home.

6. Bad Plumbing

Plumbing issues occur in old and new homes alike, and if you’ve lived in multiple homes in your lifetime, you have likely encountered the occasional faucet drip or slow drain. While certain plumbing issues require simple repairs, other issues are far more costly.

Fortunately, many plumbing problems are easy for an inspector to identify. Corrosion, leaks, pipe damage, and low water pressure are all common signs of an underlying plumbing problem.

7. Poor Drainage

When a house is built, it is constructed with a drainage system that allows water to run away from the property. When the soil beneath the home shifts, however, the drainage system may also shift—causing water to no longer run off naturally.

If water pools around the home’s foundation, it can lead to not only mold and mildew but also decay and compromised stability.

8. Pest Infestations

Virginia homeowners experience their fair share of humid weather, and subsequently, pest infestations. While checking for pests isn’t part of the typical home inspection process, you can arrange a specialized termite inspection if you or your inspector suspects any level of damage.

During a pest inspection, the inspector will examine the home for damaged wood and determine whether the house’s structural integrity has been compromised. The average termite inspection costs roughly $100—a small price to pay in lieu of discovering a severe infestation after moving in!

9. Poor Maintenance

Overall neglect is another issue that an inspector might discover by walking through a property. While a certain level of wear and tear is to be expected with any home, deferred maintenance can quickly turn a house into a large rehabilitation project for the next homeowner.

If the inspector notes that the property needs significant renovations, you will need to either ask the homeowner to make repairs or account for the total cost of these repairs before putting in your offer.

Certain findings might even cause you to walk away from a deal altogether! According to Gitnux, roughly 63% of homebuyers claim that the home inspection is a significant factor in their purchasing decision.

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