What is considered a major defect when an inspector finds a horizontial crack on a foundation wall should be determind by a few things: First thing that has to be considered is the age of the home, the second is the size of the crack. Being a home inspector in NJ delivering the news to the buyer that there is a horzontial crack can be a tricky task. The standard of practice we follow states I have to note it in the report and advise the client to seek further evaluation from a structural engineer. I agree that a CYA statement is necessary, but I also want to be careful not use a scare tactic just to cover myself. I take the age of the home and the size of the crack and make a statement like the following: The house is 26yrs old the crack is no more then 1/8 of an inch. It does not appear structural. However for your peace of mind you might want to consider bringing in a engineer to verify my findings since horizontial cracks can lead to structural concerns. My first obligation is to my client. I will give them the facts and let them make the decision if purchasing the home still worth it.
I just recently inspected a home with EIFS or Exterior Insulation Finishing system siding. Most people know it as synthetic stucco. The owner disclosed that the system has already been replaced and the house was no more then 14 yrs old. While doing my inspection I can across some unfamilar drip marks or bleeding under a window. I am not sure if it is insect related or it has something to do with the siding itself. This is the whole point of this post. I made a call to a certified EIFS inspector to take a look a the pictures I had taken that day to determine what I had found. If you are buying a home, selling a home or do home inspections for a living. If you ever come across this type of siding i highly recommend you hire a certified inspector who specializes in these types of inspections. If you are selling your home that has EIFS, get the siding inspected and present to potential buyers the report and a moisture free warranty which will put there minds at ease.