Standards of Practice

 

All Pro Home Inspections


Steve John, 3685 Herbert Street, San Diego, CA  92103, 619-283-1123
 
 STANDARD RESIDENTIAL INSPECTION AGREEMENT
(PLEASE READ CAREFULLY, THIS IS INTENDED TO BE A  LEGALLY BINDING CONTRACT)
 
Client Name:                                                                                                  Date:
Inspection Address:                                                                                       Time:   
 
SCOPE OF THE INSPECTION: The real estate inspection to be performed for Client is a survey and basic operation of the systems and components of a building which can be reached, entered, or viewed without difficulty, moving obstructions, or requiring any action which may result in damage to the property or personal injury to the Inspector. The purpose of the inspection is to provide the Client with information regarding the general condition of the building(s).
    Inspector will prepare and provide Client a written report for the sole use and benefit of Client. The written report shall document any material defects discovered in the building’s systems and components which, in the opinion of the Inspector, are safety hazards, are not functioning properly, or appear to be at the ends of their service lives.
    The inspection shall be performed in accordance with the Standards of Practice of the California Real Estate Inspection Association (CREIA®), attached hereto and incorporated herein by reference, and is limited to those items specified herein.
 
CLIENT'S DUTY: Client agrees to read the entire written report when it is received and promptly call Inspector with any questions or concerns regarding the inspection or the written report. The written report shall be the final and exclusive findings of Inspector.
    Client acknowledges that Inspector is a generalist and that further investigation of a reported condition by an appropriate specialist may provide additional information which can affect Client's purchase decision. Client agrees to obtain further evaluation of reported conditions before removing any investigation contingency and prior to the close of the transaction.
    In the event Client becomes aware of a reportable condition which was not reported by Inspector, Client agrees to promptly notify Inspector and allow Inspector and/or Inspector's designated representative(s) to inspect said condition(s) prior to making any repair, alteration, or replacement. Client agrees that any failure to so notify Inspector and allow inspection is a material breach of this Agreement.
 
ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS: Client agrees what is being contracted for is a building inspection and not an environmental evaluation. The inspection is not intended to detect, identify, or disclose any health or environmental conditions regarding this building or property, including, but not limited to: the presence of asbestos, radon, lead, urea-formaldehyde, fungi, molds, mildew, PCBs, "Chinese drywall" or other toxic, reactive, combustible or corrosive contaminants, materials, or substances in the water, air, soil, or building materials. The Inspector is not liable for injury, health risks, or damage caused or contributed to by these conditions.
 
SEVERABILITY: Should any provision of this Agreement be held by a court of competent jurisdiction to be either invalid or unenforceable, the remaining provisions of this Agreement shall remain in full force and effect, unimpaired by the court’s holding.
 
MEDIATION: The parties to this Agreement agree to attend, in good faith, mediation with a retired judge or lawyer with at least 5 years of mediation experience before any lawsuit is filed. All notices of mediation must be served in writing by return receipt requested allowing 30 days for response. If no response is forthcoming the moving party may then demand binding arbitration under the terms and provisions set forth below.
 
ARBITRATION: Any dispute concerning the interpretation or enforcement of this Agreement, the inspection, the inspection report, or any other dispute arising out of this relationship, shall be resolved between the parties by binding arbitration conducted by Construction Dispute Resolution Services, LLC utilizing their Rules and Procedures. The parties hereto shall be entitled to all discovery rights and legal motions as provided in the California Code of Civil Procedure. The decision of the Arbitrator shall be final and binding and judgment on the Award may be entered in any Court of competent jurisdiction. 
 
GENERAL PROVISIONS: The written report is not a substitute for any transferor’s or agent’s disclosure that may be required by law, or a substitute for Client’s independent duty to reasonably evaluate the property prior to the close of the transaction. This inspection Agreement, the real estate inspection, and the written report do not constitute a home warranty, guarantee, or insurance policy of any kind whatsoever.
    No legal action or proceeding of any kind, including those sounding in tort or contract, can be commenced against Inspector/Inspection Company or its officers, agents, or employees more than one year from the date Client discovers, or through the exercise of reasonable diligence should have discovered, the cause of action. In no event shall the time for commencement of a legal action or proceeding exceed two years from the date of the subject inspection. THIS TIME PERIOD IS SHORTER THAN OTHERWISE PROVIDED BY LAW.
    This Agreement shall be binding upon and inure to the benefit of the parties hereto and their heirs, successors, and assigns.
    This Agreement constitutes the entire integrated agreement between the parties hereto pertaining to the subject matter hereof and may be modified only by a written agreement signed by all of the parties hereto. No oral agreements, understandings, or representations shall change, modify, or amend any part of this Agreement.
    Each party signing this Agreement warrants and represents that he/she has the full capacity and authority to execute this Agreement on behalf of the named party. If this Agreement is executed on behalf of Client by any third party, the person executing this Agreement expressly represents to Inspector that he/she has the full and complete authority to execute this Agreement on Client's behalf and to fully and completely bind Client to all of the terms, conditions, limitations, exceptions, and exclusions of this Agreement.
    I agree to pay the fee listed below, and I have read, understand and agree to all the terms, conditions, and limitations of this Agreement, and voluntarily agree to be bound thereby.  I understand that the inspection fee stated is for the initial inspection and report. I agree to pay for the inspector's time for any reinspection, meetings with third parties including any contractor, seller, or arbitrator that may be needed at a later date, or any time for inspector to participate in any legal or administrative proceeding at the hourly rate of $150.00 for the initial hour or part thereof, and $120.00 per hour after the first hour. (Reasonable phone consultation is free.)
 
                                                                                                   ________________________________________
 
 
________________________________                                                  ____________________________  ___________
Inspector for Company                    Date                                          Client                                    Date
 
 
Total Fee $0.00       Paid by: Check # ____________      Payment acknowledged: _______________________________ 
 
 
CALIFORNIA REAL ESTATE INSPECTION ASSOCIATION
 
Residential Standards of Practice
 
Part I. Definitions and Scope
 
These Standards of Practice provide guidelines for a real estate inspection and define certain terms relating to these inspections. Italicized words in these Standards are defined in Part IV, Glossary of Terms.
 
A real estate inspection is a survey and basic operation of the systems and components of a building which can be reached, entered, or viewed without difficulty, moving obstructions, or requiring any action which may result in damage to the property or personal injury to the Inspector. The purpose of the inspection is to provide the Client with information regarding the general condition of the building(s). Cosmetic and aesthetic conditions shall not be considered.
A real estate inspection report provides written documentation of material defects discovered in the inspected building’s systems and components which, in the opinion of the Inspector, are safety hazards, are not functioning properly, or appear to be at the ends of their service lives. The report may include the Inspector's recommendations for correction or further evaluation.
Inspections performed in accordance with these Standards of Practice are not technically exhaustive and shall apply to the primary building and its associated primary parking structure.
 
Part II. Standards of Practice
 
A real estate inspection includes the readily accessible systems and components or a representative number of multiple similar components listed in Sections 1 through 9 subject to the limitations, exceptions, and exclusions in Part III.
 
SECTION 1 - Foundation, Basement, and Under-floor Areas
A.  Items to be inspected:
     1. Foundation system
     2. Floor framing system
     3. Under-floor ventilation
     4. Foundation anchoring and cripple wall bracing
     6. Wood separation from soil
     7. Insulation
 
B.  The Inspector is not required to:
     1 Determine size, spacing, location, or adequacy of foundation bolting/bracing components or reinforcing systems
     2 Determine the composition or energy rating of insulation materials
 
SECTION 2 - Exterior
 
A.  Items to be inspected:
     1. Surface grade directly adjacent to the buildings
     2, Doors and windows
     3. Attached decks, porches, patios, enclosures, balconies, stairways and their enclosures
     4. Wall cladding and trim
     5. Portions of walkways and driveways that are adjacent to the buildings
 
B.  The Inspector is not required to:
     1. Inspect door or window screens, shutters, awnings, or security bars
     2. Inspect fences or gates or operate automated door or gate openers or their safety devices
     3. Use a ladder to inspect systems or components
 
SECTION 3 - Roof Covering
 
A.  Items to be inspected:
     1. Covering
     2. Drainage
     3. Flashings
     4. Penetrations
     5. Skylights
 
B.  The Inspector is not required to:
     1. Walk on the roof surface if in the opinion of the Inspector there is risk of damage or a hazard to the Inspector
     2. Warrant or certify that roof systems, coverings, or components are free from leakage
 
SECTION 4 - Attic Areas and Roof Framing
 
A.  Items to be inspected:
     1. Framing
     2. Ventilation
     3. Insulation
 
B.  The Inspector is not required to:
     1. Inspect mechanical attic ventilation systems or components
     2. Determine the composition or energy rating of insulation materials
 
SECTION 5 - Plumbing
 
A.  Items to be inspected:
     1. Water supply piping
     2. Drain, waste, and vent piping
     3. Faucets and fixtures
     4. Fuel gas piping
     5. Water heaters
     6. Functional flow and functional drainage
 
B.  The Inspector is not required to:
     1. Fill any fixture with water, inspect overflow drains or drain-stops, or evaluate backflow devices, waste ejectors, sump pumps, or drain line cleanouts
     2. Inspect or evaluate water temperature balancing devices, temperature fluctuation, time to obtain hot water, water circulation, or solar heating systems or components
     3. Inspect whirlpool baths, steam showers, or sauna systems or components
     4. Inspect fuel tanks or determine if the fuel gas system is free of leaks
     5. Inspect wells or water treatment systems
 
SECTION 6 - Electrical
 
A.  Items to be inspected:
     1. Service equipment
     2. Electrical panels
     3. Circuit wiring
     4. Switches, receptacles, outlets, and lighting fixtures
 
B.   The Inspector is not required to:
     1. Operate circuit breakers or circuit interrupters
     2. Remove cover plates
     3. Inspect de-icing systems or components
     4. Inspect private or emergency electrical supply systems or components
 
SECTION 7 - Heating and Cooling
 
A.  Items to be inspected:
     1. Heating equipment
     2. Central cooling equipment
     3. Energy source and connections
     4. Combustion air and exhaust vent systems
     5. Condensate drainage
     6. Conditioned air distribution systems
 
B.  The Inspector is not required to:
     1. Inspect heat exchangers or electric heating elements
     2. Inspect non-central air conditioning units or evaporative coolers
     3. Inspect radiant, solar, hydronic, or geothermal systems or components
     4. Determine volume, uniformity, temperature, airflow, balance, or leakage of any air distribution system
     5. Inspect electronic air filtering or humidity control systems or components
 
SECTION 8 - Fireplaces and Chimneys
 
A.  Items to be inspected:
     1. Chimney exterior
     2. Spark arrestor
     3. Firebox
     4. Damper
     5. Hearth extension
 
B.  The Inspector is not required to:
     1. Inspect chimney interiors
     2. Inspect fireplace inserts, seals, or gaskets
     3. Operate any fireplace or determine if a fireplace can be safely used
 
SECTION 9 - Building Interior
 
A.  Items to be inspected:
     1. Walls, ceilings, and floors
     2. Doors and windows
     3. Stairways, handrails, and guardrails
     4. Permanently installed cabinets
     5. Permanently installed cook-tops, mechanical range vents, ovens, dishwashers, and food waste disposers
     6. Absence of smoke alarms
     7. Vehicle doors and openers
 
B.  The Inspector is not required to:
     1. Inspect window, door, or floor coverings
     2. Determine whether a building is secure from unauthorized entry
     3. Operate or test smoke alarms or vehicle door safety devices
     4. Use a ladder to inspect systems or components
 
Part III. Limitations, Exceptions, and Exclusions
 
A.   The following are excluded from a real estate inspection:
1.     Systems or components of a building, or portions thereof, which are not readily accessible, not permanently installed, or not inspected due to circumstances beyond the control of the Inspector or which the Client has agreed or specified are not to be inspected
2.     Site improvements or amenities, including, but not limited to; accessory buildings, fences, planters, landscaping, irrigation, swimming pools, spas, ponds, waterfalls, fountains or their components or accessories
3.     Auxiliary features of appliances beyond the appliance’s basic function
4.     Systems or components, or portions thereof, which are under ground, under water, or where the Inspector must come into contact with water
5.     Common areas as defined in California Civil Code section 1351, et seq., and any dwelling unit systems or components located in common areas
6.     Determining compliance with manufacturers’ installation guidelines or specifications, building codes, accessibility standards, conservation or energy standards, regulations, ordinances, covenants, or other restrictions
7.     Determining adequacy, efficiency, suitability, quality, age, or remaining life of any building, system, or component, or marketability or advisability of purchase
8.     Structural, architectural, geological, environmental, hydrological, land surveying, or soils-related examinations
9.     Acoustical or other nuisance characteristics of any system or component of a building, complex, adjoining property, or neighborhood
10.   Conditions related to animals, insects, or other organisms, including fungus and mold, and any hazardous, illegal, or controlled substance, or the damage or health risks arising there from
11.   Risks associated with events or conditions of nature including, but not limited to; geological, seismic, wildfire, and flood
12.   Water testing any building, system, or component or determine leakage in shower pans, pools, spas, or any body of water
13.   Determining the integrity of hermetic seals at multi-pane glazing
14.   Differentiating between original construction or subsequent additions or modifications
15.   Reviewing information from any third-party, including but not limited to; product defects, recalls, or similar notices
16.   Specifying repairs/replacement procedures or estimating cost to correct
17.   Communication, computer, security, or low-voltage systems and remote, timer, sensor, or similarly controlled systems or components
18.   Fire extinguishing and suppression systems and components or determining fire resistive qualities of materials or assemblies
19.   Elevators, lifts, and dumbwaiters
20.   Lighting pilot lights or activating or operating any system, component, or appliance that is shut down, unsafe to operate, or does not respond to normal user controls
21.   Operating shutoff valves or shutting down any system or component
22.   Dismantling any system, structure or component or removing access panels other than those provided for homeowner maintenance
 
B.     The Inspector may, at his or her discretion:
 
1.     Inspect any building, system, component, appliance, or improvement not included or otherwise excluded by these Standards of Practice. Any such inspection shall comply with all other provisions of these Standards.
2.     Include photographs in the written report or take photographs for Inspector’s reference without inclusion in the written report. Photographs may not be used in lieu of written documentation.
 
 
 
IV. Glossary of Terms
 
*Note: All definitions apply to derivatives of these terms when italicized in the text.
 
Appliance: An item such as an oven, dishwasher, heater, etc. which performs a specific function
Building: The subject of the inspection and its primary parking structure
Component: A part of a system, appliance, fixture, or device
Condition: Conspicuous state of being
Determine: Arrive at an opinion or conclusion pursuant to a real estate inspection
Device: A component designed to perform a particular task or function
Fixture: A plumbing or electrical component with a fixed position and function
Function: The normal and characteristic purpose or action of a system, component, or device
Functional Drainage: The ability to empty a plumbing fixture in a reasonable time
Functional Flow: The flow of the water supply at the highest and farthest fixture from the building supply shutoff valve when another fixture is used simultaneously
Inspect: Refer to Part I, 'Definition and Scope', Paragraph A
Inspector: One who performs a real estate inspection
Normal User Control: Switch or other device that activates a system or component and is provided for use by an occupant of a building
Operate: Cause a system, appliance, fixture, or device to function using normal user controls
Permanently Installed: Fixed in place, e.g. screwed, bolted, nailed, or glued
Primary Building: A building that an Inspector has agreed to inspect
Primary Parking structure: A building for the purpose of vehicle storage associated with the primary building
Readily Accessible: Can be reached, entered, or viewed without difficulty, moving obstructions, or requiring any action which may harm persons or property
Real Estate Inspection: Refer to Part I, 'Definitions and Scope', Paragraph A
Representative Number: Example, an average of one component per area for multiple similar components such as windows, doors, and electrical outlets
Safety Hazard: A condition that could result in significant physical injury
Shut Down: Disconnected or turned off in a way so as not to respond to normal user controls
System: An assemblage of various components designed to function as a whole
Technically Exhaustive: Examination beyond the scope of a real estate inspection, which may require disassembly, specialized knowledge, special equipment, measuring, calculating, quantifying, testing, exploratory probing, research, or analysis
 
 2006 CREIA® ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. CREIA® IS A PUBLIC-BENEFIT, NONPROFIT ORGANIZATION.