Top 10 Home Inspection Discrepancies in Nashville for 2012

Home Inspector with HABITEC Home and Building Inspections, LLC

See the list below for the:

2012 Top 10 Most Common Home Inspection Discrepancies in Nashville


10.  Vegetation encroaching on the house.  Vegetation that encroaches on the home can damage the home, trap moisture against the home, and allow a path for insects, rodents and reptiles to enter the home.  Keep vegetation at least 18” away from the home or components. 


9.  Window and door trim and caulk.  Cracks or gaps in the caulk around door and window trim can allow water to penetrate behind the trim.  This water can deteriorate the trim and the framing near the doors and windows.  Any crack or gap in the trim or caulk should be repaired with new caulk and paint. 


8.  Brick veneer stress cracks.  These cracks are most likely located near the corners of doors and windows, or at the down-slope corner of the home.  Brick veneer cracks are frequently an indication of water management failure.  Repair any crack in the brick veneer that exceeds 1/8 inch in width. 


7.  Roof penetration boot cracks.  The rubber-like neoprene component of roof penetrations (roof boots) for plumbing vents can crack after about 7 years and cause roof leaks.  Use of caulk is only a temporary repair.  These cracked components need to be replaced. 


6.  Condensate drains.  HVAC condensate drains that terminate at the foundation wall can allow significant moisture to accumulate at the foundation wall and possibly enter the crawl space.  Condensate drains should terminate at the exterior of the home, at least 18” from the home, and to terrain that slopes away from the home. 


5.  Grading and lot drainage.  The grade of the soil adjacent to the home can allow moisture to flow toward the home and weaken the foundation or enter the crawl space or basement and create an environment conducive to mold.  HABITEC recommends at least a 6” drop in grade over the first 10’ of horizontal space from the home. 


4.  Failing roof drainage systems including gutters, downspouts and extensions.  Gutters that are full of debris, rusted or poorly sloped can allow water to overflow and drop to the foundation wall or backflow into the attic or house.  Downspouts that are disconnected from the underground drainage components can allow water to drop at the foundation wall.  Make sure these components are clean and function properly. 


3.  Inadequate crawl space moisture barrier.  Some moisture will inevitably make its way to the crawl space.  Having a crawl space moisture barrier of 6 mil plastic covering 100% of graded crawl space soil that slopes to a positive drain will help control moisture that does make its way to the crawl space. 


2.  Water in the crawl space.  Water in the crawl space can cause either structural failure if allowed to pool at the foundation walls or around the piers, or mold to start growing on the wood components.  


1.  Crawl space mold.  Moisture allowed to accumulate inside the crawl space can lead to mold in the crawl space.  Forty percent of the air that enters the home comes from the crawl space.  Mold can be hazardous to your health.  Make every effort to prevent moisture accumulation in the crawl space.


Thank you,

Richard Acree


Comments in this blog posting are the copyrighted intellectual property of Richard Acree, President, HABITEC Home and Building Inspections, LLC, and contributing members of the Active Rain Real Estate network, and are intended to educate and otherwise assist home owners, sellers and buyers, building owners, sellers and buyers, realtors, real estate investors, property managers, and lenders in the process of owning, buying or selling homes or commercial buildings. HABITEC is a residential (home) and commercial building inspection company serving Middle Tennessee including Nashville, Brentwood, Franklin, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Mt. Juliet, Hendersonville, Dickson, Belle Meade, Columbia, Spring Hill and more! In addition to building inspections HABITEC offers Environmental Services for mold assessments, radon testing and water quality analysis. Additional information about HABITEC can be found on our website at, or call 615-376-2753.

Richard Acree is the author of the HABITEC Home and Building Inspections ActiveRain Blog and founder of the ActiveRain Group Tennessee Home and Building Inspectors. All are welcome to join and see more blogs like this one. You can also join HABITEC on Facebook or Linked .

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Comments (3)

Joan Whitebook
BHG The Masiello Group - Nashua, NH
Consumer Focused Real Estate Services

This is a good list of items that often come up during a home inspection.  It is important as part of a maintenance plan to try to prevent these situations from developing.

Nov 28, 2012 11:25 AM
Sharon Parisi
United Real Estate Dallas - Dallas, TX
Dallas Homes

Condensate drains can be a severe issue.  I represented a client who completed extensive foundation work and remodeling on a home, only to discover that the original builder ran the condensate line from the attic, down a wall, through the foundation, into the soil, with no hook up to a drain. I am betting that the new infrared devices would have picked this up in a pre inspection, before putting the house on the market.

Nov 28, 2012 12:52 PM
Robert Dirienzo
HABITEC Home and Building Inspections, LLC - Franklin, TN
Home Inspections - Nashville TN

Hello Joan and Sharon,

Hello and thank you for your comments.  Joan:  I agree this is a good list, especially for sellers, to help them get their home ready for sale.  But this is a good list for all home owners to use to keep their homes in good condition.  Water management issues are the number one discrepancy found on all homes during a Home Inspection.  If home owners would pay more attention to these issues they would do their homes a great service and avoid other issues suchs as mold and structural failure.


Sharon:  Interesting story.  In middle Tennesse we do not normally see our HVAC condensate drains tied into a drain pipe.  Normally these components are just routed to the outside of the home and deposit the condensate moisture to the ground.  Hopefully these terminations deposit to grade that slopes away from the house as well.  In the heat of the summer a condensate drain can produce between 5 - 7 gallons of water per day! 

Thank you,


Nov 28, 2012 09:02 PM