home inspectors in connecticut ct: Seeing is Knowing - 11/15/11 11:09 PM
Home buyers see their new home through dreamy eyes, their vision clouded by euphoria. They may see themselves enjoying their new house with family over for a holiday or with their buddies hanging out watching the game on a Sunday afternoon. The excitement of buying a home creates a cornucopia of American dreams.
I see things a bit differently. Sure I admire the new kitchen and the nice yard for the kids and dog to play. Who wouldn’t? But I’m not here to appreciate, I’m here to investigate. So often I hear the buyers say something like;
We had _____ (insert … (14 comments)

home inspectors in connecticut ct: A Cure For The Flue - 11/11/11 12:03 AM
As the weather cools down, the thermostats go up. Just like Newton says…well maybe not exactly, but colder weather means the heat is being used in the house. And where there’s heat there’s fire…and smoke. Conventional heating systems produce much less actual, particulate laden smoke, than traditional wood stoves or a good old roaring fire in the fireplace.
Here in Connecticut fireplaces, wood and pellet stoves are quite common. Many wood stoves and some pellet stoves use the fireplace for installation and subsequently to vent out their smoke. I find many home buyers like having a fireplace in the home and … (14 comments)

home inspectors in connecticut ct: A Rare Bird - 11/04/11 01:33 AM
As we live and experience life, we also learn. Education starts from the day we are pushed into the world screaming and hopefully continues until we sigh our last breath. I say hopefully, because I’m not certain every individual possesses a child’s curiosity and desire to learn. That may not be an entirely fair assessment or even a true statement. Everyone has a passion for something and passion is a strong emotion. One thing is for certain, when one has a strong desire for what they do, whether it is a hobby or a job, it shows.

It is said … (9 comments)

home inspectors in connecticut ct: Disabling an Annoyance - 10/30/11 02:14 AM
We become very accustom to living a certain way in our homes. Our routine is built around our expectations, knowing that things operate a certain way. We expect when we walk into the kitchen to make our morning coffee and flip a wall switch, the light will come on. Standing at the shower, when we turn on the tap hot water will run out.
But what happens when the water is cold when we expect hot?

I suspect it is a mixed bag of emotions as you stand there naked, anticipating a warm steam to flow from the shower head. … (32 comments)

home inspectors in connecticut ct: A Good Idea? - 10/28/11 01:40 AM
In the course of many a home inspection I find something that makes me scratch my head in wonder. Now when I find a Handy Homeowner fix or a weird install by a contractor, it’s not hard to understand that somehow the synapses in this person’s brain matter connected in such a way as to view their work as sensible and good. What really makes my head throb is when there are very likely multiple people involved in weirdness.
Take for example a recent rainy morning inspection. As I came around to the one side of the exterior, right where the … (9 comments)

home inspectors in connecticut ct: Too Close For Comfort - 10/22/11 02:01 AM

We see things in the course of our day that we automatically assume are okay because they are the way we are used to seeing them. In the business of real estate propane tanks on the outside of houses are as commons as homes on the market (we all know how common those are). Where are these tanks often located?
Right up against the house.
If the tank is less than 125 gallons, it is allowed to be against the house following a few rules. Here is a propane tank I found against the home on a recent inspection. First … (69 comments)

home inspectors in connecticut ct: Which Way To Lean - 10/19/11 01:09 AM
November is fast approaching and that brings the question; which way do you lean, left or right? While it is quite unlikely this old shed and the rake are engaged in a debate, it sure looks like you can tell which way they tend to lean. Of course I could be entirely mistaken, the rake may simply be trying to help prop up the shed, keeping it from going past the point of no return. It's so hard to tell. Things gets so convoluted this time of year.

James QuarelloConnecticut Home Inspector2010 - 2011 SNEC-ASHI PresidentNRSB #8SS0022JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC

To … (5 comments)

home inspectors in connecticut ct: Shakey Stairs - 10/18/11 01:48 AM
Stairs, almost every home has a least one set. Stairs that were built with the home are usually built correctly and are fairly safe. Sure the older the home the more likely a set of stairs will not conform to modern building standards for construction and safety. Yet even an older set of stairs are generally solid.
And then there are deck stairs.
Decks as many inspectors know are a favorite project of the weekend warrior. Even professionals have difficulties constructing decks entirely correctly with all safety design elements in place. Stairs by and large seem to give the amateur the … (9 comments)

home inspectors in connecticut ct: Asymmetry - 10/17/11 01:15 AM
Asymmetry is found in the natural world, I would say mostly in living things. This quality is in the majority everything we see, especially peoples faces. Nature isn’t perfect so when a flower grows or we are conceived, all the parts aren’t exactly the same. And that is what makes our faces and everything around us interesting and unique.
Asymmetry on the other hand should not be found in the things we humans manufacture, unless of course it is by design. Flaws in manufactured symmetry are often the reason for failures. Precision is usually required, but to what degree depends on … (9 comments)

home inspectors in connecticut ct: The Smallest Addition - 10/15/11 01:09 AM
When you read the title your thoughts may immediately be brought to a new baby. Sorry, not the topic of this post. Since I’m a home inspector when I talk addition I mean to a house. Now most folks put on an addition to add more room. Part of the initial process is planning and determining just how big that new space is going to be. Well this is the world of real estate where it seems there are always exceptions to every concept we hold.
How about adding just over two feet to the end of the house? Doesn’t sound … (8 comments)

home inspectors in connecticut ct: Gravity Glue - 10/14/11 01:27 AM
Home inspectors love to joke about the favorite repair products of homeowners and professionals a like, duct tape and caulk. There literally seems to be an unending number of uses for these two materials. There are also a few other less used, but just as creatively applied products like wire or roofing tar (a crude form of caulk). Now add to that gravity glue.
What is gravity glue you ask?
Well it seems to be a new miracle adhesive that magically holds repairs in place, for example this hole in a roof. Some handyman apparently removed a waste pipe vent from … (16 comments)

home inspectors in connecticut ct: Lying Down On The Job - 10/11/11 01:30 AM
Yes lying down on the job is not usually a sign that you are working hard unless you happen to be an auto mechanic or a plumber under a sink. Home inspectors like myself sometimes have to get down on our hands and knees or belly to crawl or slither along under a house. Definitely hard work and not often pleasant.
Recently I found an important component for the house lying down on the job. I can surely say I have never seen this before in all my years of inspecting homes. In fact when I asked other inspectors I know, … (40 comments)

home inspectors in connecticut ct: The Draft - 10/10/11 01:05 AM
Back some years ago, the draft was something to be avoided, with some young men going so far as to flee to Canada. Yet all along and it’s still true today a draft can be desirable in some instances, while in others not so much. The draft of which I speak has nothing to do with manning an army, but with air flow.
Since we humans prefer to stay warm, we have for centuries relied on burning something to produce heat. At first it was wood and it still is for many people, especially as the price of our more modern … (7 comments)

home inspectors in connecticut ct: Now This is Rockin’ - 10/09/11 01:09 AM
Anyone who is in the business of real estate will tell you there is rarely a dull moment. We see all kinds of strange and interesting stuff. I don’t mean to sound like I’m bragging, but home inspectors undeniably get to see the best stuff. Not to take away from the other professions that make up this business or the clients themselves. There are times when the fascinating and odd are readily on display.
Here is a curiosity form a recent inspection we all had to talk about. That is exactly what it looks like, a bed frame made from mortar … (22 comments)

home inspectors in connecticut ct: Shoemakers and Building Contractors - 10/08/11 12:26 AM
After spending many years at one job, you sort of develop a six sense about certain things related to what you do. For me I get a sense of the owners of a house. I think every house has a personality, an aura that comes from the people that have occupied the space. Like a clairvoyant I can get a vibe from a house. Sometimes it’s not so warm and fuzzy. When I feel it, I know I’m in for a long inspection.
Now I am not speaking of evil spirits or anything remotely super natural, just a sense of how … (17 comments)

home inspectors in connecticut ct: Twofer - 10/04/11 11:54 PM
Everyone loves a twofer. You buy one of something and you get another of the same item free. Buy a bag of chips, get another one free, buy a pair of pants and get the other one free. How about chimneys? Or should I say chimney flues. Did someone run a twofer on them way back many years ago?
Here is an unusual looking chimney on an antique home circa 1880. Notice the wide base extending to the right. That’s where it turns out the fire place has been built. A bit unusual because the flue has to be considerably off … (19 comments)

home inspectors in connecticut ct: Kick It Out Blues - 10/04/11 01:33 AM
You might think of the song by Heart after reading the title, but this post has little to do with kick ass rock and roll. This is more a tale of the blues.
Roofs, every home has one. Without a roof you would have a big skylight…that let’s in all the elements. So the roof is very important. What is also important with the roof are the flashing details. It is often said the devil is in the details. I couldn’t agree more.
What often separates good work from great? The minute details, the care, the knowledge that someone took to … (12 comments)

home inspectors in connecticut ct: Gambling - 09/25/11 01:46 AM
A funny quip I have been hearing for as long as I can remember goes; I bet it looked good on paper. Meaning something is a piece of junk and it has or will predictably fail miserably.
As a Connecticut home inspector, I see good (?) concept, bad execution way too frequently. No where do I tend to find this more, than on a home that has been flipped.
Take for example this bright idea, a shelf above the garage door. Good thought, the garage is small and the extra storage will certainly be useful. Notice the large joist being used … (16 comments)

home inspectors in connecticut ct: The Best Route May Not Be The Best Way - 09/21/11 12:05 AM
It is said the shortest distance between two points is a straight line. That is certainly true…on paper. In the real world it is often impossible to reach point B from point A directly unless you happen to be a bird. One must use the best route available. That path may not be the most direct or the easiest, just the best road to travel.
Here we have a plumber who has lost his way and has taken the direct route. He has drilled through this duct like a marauding band of Huns. That duct has been there since the house … (34 comments)

home inspectors in connecticut ct: It All Comes Round - 09/20/11 01:28 AM
Recently at an inspection I was greeted at the door by the homeowner who also happens to be a real estate agent. I know her and during our conversation she let it be known she has been in the business for over thirty years. The reason her longevity was brought up, there is just about always a reason, was to do with the radon test. Specifically with regards to signing the test conformance agreement.
A radon testing conformance agreement is an important part of testing protocols for real estate transactions. It first educates the homeowner on the necessary test conditions that … (10 comments)

James Quarello, Connecticut Home Inspector (JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC) Rainmaker large

James Quarello

Connecticut Home Inspector

Wallingford, CT

More about me…

JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC

Address: Wallingford, CT, 06492

Office: (203) 887-4782

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