Author Archive


Return on Investment

When purchasing a home there are certain expenses that are of great value to the home buyer. Appraisals help banks to be confident they can loan large amounts of money to buyers.  The appraisal fee is a good return on investment.  Real estate agents’ fees are another expense that is worth every penny, as everyone knows. Home inspections cost money, but their value is immense in almost every situation. In our current “seller’s market”, some inspections ...


Fire Safety Plan

When I read or hear of home fire disasters, it affects me deeply.  My family home was totally destroyed by fire when I was a child. In the early 60’s, most homes did not have smoke alarms. If my 9 year old brother had not woke my parents and my father had not gone back into the intensely burning house against his neighbors urges to find his toddler son, ...


To Inspect or Not to Inspect

In today’s market, some buyers are wondering if they need a home inspection.  Even when a buyer purchases a house “as is”, there are good reasons to have a home inspection.  Below, I will consider several reasons: Safety: I have remodeled, built and inspected homes in our community for over 30 years.  I am convinced the practice of inspecting homes when they switch ownership has improved their safety.  (Prior to the relatively ...


Radon is Here to Stay

Radon is Here to Stay By Steve Vacha Radon is here to stay, literally.   The uranium dropped off by the glaciers millennia ago is buried deep in our soil.  As many of us who have been around awhile know, nothing in our environment stays the same for long.    Uranium after many thousands of years, changes to radium, and radium changes to radon gas. The problem with radon gas is the alpha radiation that ...


Buyer’s Expectations

Buyer’s Expectations of the Home Inspection By Steve Vacha   Expectations can be everything.  If a person has an unrealistic expectation about anything, they will probably be disappointed.  (Some of us football fans will never learn) When it comes to home inspections, it is important that the buyer understands just what exactly a home inspection is.   If the buyer has unrealistic expectations of what the inspection will do for them, they may be disappointed, angry, or think they made a bad choice. It is often ...


Electrical Panel Concerns

Electrical Panel Concerns By Steve Vacha Most of us have an innate respect or fear of electricity.  Be it our parents warning us about it from an early age or maybe having the outlet spark on us as we tried to plug in a damaged tool or appliance.  Our homes today have many safety features to allow us the benefit of electricity. One of the most important safety features is the electrical circuit breaker ...



Energy Steve Vacha   Where would we be without it?  We only have to remember how out of sorts we get when there is a short power outage at our homes. The cost of energy is going up. We pay more and more to heat our homes and keep the lights on. The cost to the environment rises as we take more and more to power our lives.  Our world needs new ways to utilize ...


Steps of Biblical Proportion

Steps of Biblical Proportions By Steve Vacha     My wife recently came home from a Bible study and told me the steps to the main Jewish Temple in Jerusalem, are not consistent.  They were purposely laid out in an irregular pattern to emphasize to the pilgrim to be mindful on their journey up to the Temple. Many homes we inspect also have stairs of biblical proportions.  Trouble is, we are often not in the state of ...


When It Rains It Pours

When It Rains It Pours By Steve Vacha My father was fond of saying that. He usually wasn’t talking about the weather. Our recent weather does fit this saying.  Who can remember rain like we have been having?  Homes that have never taken in water have had water in their lower levels this summer. Basements take in water or even flood due to numerous reasons. A water line can burst, usually it’s a supply line to ...


Roof Inspections Important

Roof Inspections Important By Steve Vacha During inspection walk-throughs one of the biggest questions buyers have is “what is the condition of the roof?”  Home insurance companies are starting to focus more and more on that the same question. 10 years ago most insurance companies would insure composition and wood shake roofs without a lot of questions.   If the roof looked in decent condition from the ground chances are it would be insured. In the last several years, insurance companies have tightened their qualifications ...