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Outdoor Inspections
October 20th, 2015 1:26 PM

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Mature trees towering over a yard may draw buyers, but failing to inspect the health and location of those trees could bring future headaches and costs.  The same goes for inspecting a home's irrigation system, outdoor kitchens or fireplaces, retaining walls, pools, patios or decks.

A lot of home inspectors don't focus on the landscape or exterior of the home, but landscapes are a huge issue financially for a home owner and structurally for the house.  There are a number of potential problems that can be present:  oversaturation of soil; tree branches hanging over a home that can damage roofs and allow pests access; broken or misaligned sprinklers that can lead to dry rot or termites; inefficient rain gutters that cause drainage problems; and lawn slopes that drain toward the house rather than away, setting the scene for flooding issues. 

Recently, more home inspectors are becoming aware of these issues and are now routinely including an outdoor review as part of an inspection package.  In some extreme circumstances, landscape specialists may still be needed for a more thorough investigation.  Costs vary depending on the service needed, from $75 to $450.  But buyers would benefit from learning upfront that the needed removal of a large tree could cost upwards of $1,500.

Most homes are free of any landscape issues, but if mature trees or landscaping are of any concern to a buyer, then a home inspector should be asked to include an outdoor review in his inspection package.

Posted in:Real Estate
Posted by Allen Doeringer on October 20th, 2015 1:26 PMPost a Comment

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