A single family dwelling inspection takes about 2-3 hours depending on the conditions found, how many questions are asked, and the size and nature of the property. A historic house (e.g., 1850's) takes longer than a newer home in good condition. We generally plan on 2-1/2 hours, but our schedule allows us to extend that time to about 3-1/2 hours. If the house is unusually large or is known to have major issues, we can schedule more time if we know in advance.
Attendance at the inspection is strongly recommend but not required. We describe how a home's systems work, what our concerns are, and offer information concerning maintenance and corrective action. In effect, our inspections are a "Homeowner 101" presentation about your house. Many of the items discussed do not merit inclusion in the report, but our clients tell us that the information is very useful.
You will be advised of the findings before you leave the inspection. The written report takes a day or two to prepare. We e-mail the report to you, your Realtor, and your Attorney. Radon testing takes longer, generally about a week from the time the inspection starts until the results are available.
Yes. We offer radon testing as a service to our clients. Radon is a naturally-occuring, odorless, colorless radioactive gas. Considered an indoor pollutant, radon is emitted by hard, rocky soils found in many areas of New Jersey. Like any radioactive substance, exposure at sufficient doses can lead to health issues. High levels of radon in a home can usually be effectively reduced by a qualified expert.
We use either a continuous reading radon monitor or charcoal canisters. When we use charcoal canisters, we use two in duplicate at the same location. The New Jersey DEP recommends two tests either simultaneously or sequentially for reliability purposes. The two results are compared, and both tests are reported, along with the average value. The results are usually very close.
Yes, but some comments apply. We generally advise scheduling the inspection after attorney review.
During attorney review, you can walk away from the contract without giving a reason, particularly if something nasty turns up during the inspection. However, the seller can also break the contract without giving a reason. You will have paid for your inspection, and will lose the money if the seller breaks the contract before attorney review is completed.
Some sellers will not permit an inspection until the attorney review is complete, as breaking the contract is harder once attorney review is complete.
You may wish to schedule an inspection in anticipation of completion of attorney review. We can adjust the schedule if attorney review takes longer than expected.
In a word, no. We are good at what we do, and focus on our core expertise. We refer an agent with an with an excellent reputation with 30 years experience. As a convenience, we can schedule his inspection for the same time as ours. If you have an agent you prefer, we will be pleased to work with them instead.
First, understand that this is not a legal opinion. Talk to your attorney. A contract is usually considered to be complete when your attorney has completed a review of the contact and signs off on it. But some cautions are in order.
If you are using a Realtor, he/she prepares an initial draft to make the offer, and when it is signed by buyer and seller, it creates an "offer and acceptance" which is then given to the Attorneys for their review. You have three days to seek an attorney, or you forfeit the right to an attorney review. The clock starts when both parties receive completed paperwork, properly signed. Attorneys can extend the initial three-day review period, and frequently do. Attorney review takes as long as it takes.
If you are not using a Realtor, your Attorney prepares the contract, and it becomes official when both Attorneys (buyer's and seller's) sign off on the contract. You in effect skip the "offer and acceptance" stage.