Buying A Home? Don’t Forget About The Real Estate Inspection Of Your Chimney
Buying a new home can be an exciting adventure. But the decision can bring with it a lot of uncertainty and risk, and a sense of urgency. There’s so much that’s unknown. Will you really love the neighborhood? Will the house end up being as good for you and your family as it seems to be? What if there are hidden problems that you just don’t know about? Is that fresh paint covering something up or did they just want to up the sale value?
The truth is: It’s easy to feel uneasy when you’re purchasing a new home. In many ways, the home inspector is designed to minimize your risk and protect you against an unwise purchase. But what many homeowners aren’t aware of is that, when it comes to your fireplace and chimney, a home inspector is a generalist, not a specialist. They can miss big things that you’d be better off knowing about before you make your final decision.
What kinds of things?
- Leaks and mold — Water can get into your chimney and fireplace in a number of ways, from a concave and rusting chase cover to a missing chimney cap, damaged flashing, or deteriorating masonry. Chimney leaks can cause a lot more than just an unpleasant odor; they can also contribute to dangerous mold and structural damage. What makes matters worse is that leaks can be hard to detect if you don’t know where to look or what to look for. A home inspector may miss chimney leaks and water damage in the fireplace during a home inspection, giving you the false confidence that everything is A-OK.
- Masonry/structural problems and weaknesses — While a chimney may look alright from the ground, a closer look may reveal mortar damage, cracked brick or a cracked crown, or a problem with the design. For example, the chimney may not extend far enough above the roofline for peak safety and performance. There may not be sufficient clearance from combustibles in the attic or crawl space. Or, the fireplace opening may be too large for the chimney flue. Home inspectors don’t know chimney physics and chimney safety like chimney professionals do, and they are really only there to provide a basic overview of the entire home. Wouldn’t you rather know if there are structural concerns or fire hazards to consider and/or budget for before you buy?
Certified chimney professionals are highly trained and aware of what matters when it comes to chimney and fireplace performance and safety. That’s why the Chimney Safety Institute of America (CSIA) states that all chimney and venting systems should be inspected by a certified chimney professional prior to the sale of a home/transfer of property.
Real Estate Inspections With Trinity Chimney
Are you looking for your next home? Make the move with confidence and peace of mind by scheduling a real estate inspection with a CSIA certified chimney professional before you close the deal. During a real estate inspection, we’ll:
- use video scanning equipment to see the interior of the chimney system, checking the flue for any damage, creosote buildup, fire hazards, blockages, or other concerns.
- check the chimney for proper height, design, and function.
- check the fireplace and chimney for any signs of leaks, water damage, or other types of deterioration.
- check for proper clearance from combustibles.
- check for proper installation, connection, and footing.
When we’re done, we’ll provide you with a full written report, which will include photos of our findings and recommendations for repairs or restoration work. If everything looks great, your report will provide peace of mind to move forward with a purchase. If there are problems, you’ll know what to budget for if you choose to move forward with a purchase, or what costs you should work into negotiations. Either way, you’ll have the knowledge you need to make the right decision for you and your family.
And don’t worry — Trinity Chimney Service understands that time is of the essence when you’re considering purchasing a new home. We’ll work to get your inspection done when you need it done and provide you with a full report within 24 hours.