Why do I need a home inspection? We get the question frequently and there are a number of reasons we suggest our buyers ALL get a home inspection done. This week alone we've seen two issues, one fairly uncommon, arise.

For instance, we had a client who against our advice didn't have a home inspection done. After beginning a renovation (upgrading the vinyl floor in the kitchen to tile) he found that there was a leak that had ruined the flooring not only in the kitchen, but all the way through a great room as well. This would definitely have been discovered by even the most inexperienced home inspector. In this case, saving the buyer from both a big headache and a hefty sum of money. The home was "run of the mill" and we could have easily found a very similar deal on a comparable property.

The second situation we've run into is infestation. In another property the home inspection turned up not only the normal shortcomings of an aging home that can be repaired before the sale, saving the buyer the headache and money of dealing with unresolved an unknown issues, but also a Brown Recluse infestation. Those familiar with this spider know that it is a common species in Middle Tennessee but also highly poisonous and thus dangerous. Here are the images from the home inspection:

Brown Recluse - Murfreesboro Home Inspections

Not only that, but much more uncommon inhabitant was also found. This snake (see below) seems to have taken up residence in the attic of the home.

Attic Snake - Murfreesboro Home Inspection

Now that's a problem most buyers don't want to deal with. Luckily the buyers of this property had the home inspection done and will be moving into the home reptile, insect, and probably problem free.

So what does the typical home inspection include?

1) Finding major defects.

Example: Structural failure, foundation cracks (due to water penetration causing excessive settlement), roof defects, etc.

2) Identifying problems that can lead to major defects.

Example: Defective roof mounted structures, stopped up gutters, defective or damaged windows, water in crawl space, excessive heat/moister build in attic (caused by inadequate ventilation which can lead to premature roof failure), and termite damage.

A home inspector will also check the home's heating system, central air conditioning system, interior plumbing and electrical systems; the roof, attic, and visible insulation; walls, ceilings, floors, windows and doors; the foundation, basement, and visible structure. Many inspectors will also offer services such as mold, radon and water testing.

We've even had a home inspection turn up a dead cat in an air conditioning unit. Another found that the sellers stored their unwanted trash in the crawl space. Take it from us You Want To Get A Home Inspection!

Wondering what other ODD things home inspectors come across? ThisOldHouse.com posted THIS article that featured everything from a home heating system made from car parts and holes in roofs, to light switches in a showers and aluminum foil pipes. The things some builders and homeowners do to houses never cease to amaze me!