What is Not Seen

By Steve Vacha

Most buyers tend to spend most of their time looking at the interior of a house during a showing. Interior finishes and floorplans are most important in many peoples’ minds.  At times, harsh weather such as extreme heat, cold or rain and snow can keep people from spending too much time around the outside the…

Stopping Ice Jams

By Sue Josoff

If a home has a history of ice damming, fall is the time to try to prevent further problems. Ice damming occurs when heavy snow on the roof starts to melt. The melting is usually caused by inadequate insulation in the attic. Too much warm air in the attic area warms the underside of the…

Shady Solar Panel

By Sue Josoff

Most solar panels convert around 15% of the sun’s energy into electricity.  I don’t think there is any energy getting converted, looks pretty shady to me!

Inspecting Insulated Windows for Leaks

By Sue Josoff

I recently inspected a two-bedroom home with a very large insulated window with a defective thermal seal. I explained to the concerned buyer there was a less expensive alternative to replacement. Insulated or thermal windows are made with two panels of glass sandwiched over a spacer and sealant, creating a space between the panes that…

Unconventional Chimney

By Home Standards

Here’s a  chimney I looked @ the other day. I called it unconventional and labeled it a safety recommending further evaluation. In the second picture it appeared to me that the flue pipe inside may have been too close to the window well metal because the paint and galvanizing looks like it has burned off.…

They’re Out There!

By Home Standards

Sometimes when doing an inspection, we come across what can I only be describe as “jaw dropping” examples of how not to build a house.  The other day, I had two such events in the same home.  While checking the electrical panel, I noted that all the circuit grounds had been tied together instead of…

Moisture Concerns from Window Wells

By Home Standards

I periodically read in disclosure statements that water has entered the lower level through a window well.  This normally happens in older homes, where the well does not have a drain system installed.  In heavy rains, the window well may fill up and start to leak into the house through the window.  Windows in residential…

Flashing Between Siding

By Home Standards

    When you see stacked vertical siding, you must have a piece of metal flashing between the two pieces of siding (commonly known as drip edge) to keep out any possible water penetration. If not, you will usually find soft/deteriorated siding at the seams,affecting both the top and bottom pieces, as seen in the…

Steps of Biblical Proportion

By Steve Vacha

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…