Inspecting an abandoned home

Home Inspector with Superior Home Inspections - Greater Albuquerque Area InterNACHI 10041206

I done an inspection on an abandoned home the other day. I say abandoned because the home had been sitting empty for many many months, maybe over a year, how long I'm not even sure. I can say though that my inspection of said home has been delayed and rescheduled several times whilst the bank and listing agent got it to the place it could even be inspected! No utilities of course, and when they turned the water on, they realized the previous owner had removed the water softener and that loop was still open.... water everywhere.

Cancel the inspection till we get a plumber out there to fix it! I was told by the buyers agent that they had been lied to, delayed, etc, and was becoming a nightmare property. Maybe they will blog about it too?

So finally, after several months of delays and rescheduling, it was inspection day! Everything was on and we are a go! Homes sitting abandoned and boarded up so to speak are always a challenge because things mysteriously happen.

Moisture seeps in, no HVAC to control moisture in the interior, if there's a leak, nobody's there to see it and it gets worse and worse, mildew, mold, vandalism, etc. This was a beautiful 4000sf home in the foothills, a very desirable location with awesome views! I'm thinking it was tied up in the foreclosure process.

Anyway, roofing problems, broken windows boarded up, leaking water valves probably because all the packings on the valves dried up, pests, and much disrepair!

The kitchen was a mess, cabinet doors ripped off, cook top not even wired, I guess the owners were thinking of taking it with them, or someone tried to steal it...

When I entered the garage, a very strong gas odor was prevalent. The gas line for the water heater was loose, leaking gas... and the pilot was lit!  Not just loose, you could wiggle it, it was that loose. Can you say, boom?

We spent quite a long time there, ran through one cameras battery, had to use the backup to finish, was almost there long enough to miss the Active Rain Meetup!!

My point is this.... homes sitting empty are self destructive, they need love and attention, just like your pets! Well, maybe not that much, but they live and breathe! They need ventilation, maintenance, many of the systems in the house are meant to be used, not sitting idle. Like the water heater, the furnace, all the water fixtures, windows need exercise, fireplaces need fire, lock sets need, you get my drift. This will be an awesome home with some TLC, lots of it. I can hear it say, "Please never leave me again!"


Posted by

Fred Hernden 


 Superior Home Inspections





 Albuquerque, Rio Rancho New Mexico and surrounding areas...


“My mission is to provide superior quality home inspections to my clients to ensure peace of mind so they can confidently make the largest investment they may ever make!"


Please visit my website at: for details!







This entry hasn't been re-blogged:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
Home Buying
New Mexico Bernalillo County
Ask the Home Inspector
Sensei Grasshopper
home inspection albuquerque
inspecting an abandoned home

Spam prevention
Show All Comments
Sandy Padula and Norm Padula, JD, GRI
HomeSmart Realty West & Lend Smart Mortgage, Llc. - Carlsbad, CA
Presence, Persistence & Perseverance

Fred Hernden By the sounds of all the deficiencies, these were not natural occurrences and someone clearly had a hand in this destruction. Lucky you survived it!

Feb 01, 2016 02:06 AM #1
Jay Markanich
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC - Bristow, VA
Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia

Yikes!  The scariest thing was that gas line in the garage!  Had that not been such a ventilated place it may have built up too much gas!

Feb 01, 2016 06:51 AM #2
TeamCHI - Complete Home Inspections, Inc.
Complete Home Inspections, Inc. - Brentwood, TN
Home Inspectons - Nashville, TN area - 615.661.029

 Good evening Fred Hernden . I do have to agree. Abandoned properties can fall into disrepair quickly.

Feb 01, 2016 07:10 AM #3
Fred Hernden, CMI
Superior Home Inspections - Greater Albuquerque Area - Albuquerque, NM
Albuquerque area Master Inspector

Sandy - Yep, when a house sits alone with no protection.... mother nature, vandals, and theives take their tolls!

Jay - Oh, I opened those garage doors quickly.... manually too!

Michael - Yes they can!

Feb 01, 2016 11:25 PM #4
Roy Kelley
Realty Group Referrals - Gaithersburg, MD

Thank you very much for sharing your experience.

Have a most productive Feburary!

Feb 07, 2016 10:17 PM #5
Gene Allen
Fathom Realty - Cary, NC
Realty Consultant for Cary Real Estate

People don't think of houses needing TLC like that but they do.

Feb 25, 2016 05:01 AM #6
Fred Hernden, CMI
Superior Home Inspections - Greater Albuquerque Area - Albuquerque, NM
Albuquerque area Master Inspector

Roy - Thank you!

Gene - If a house is going to be vacant a while, the owner should prepare the house as such!

Feb 26, 2016 12:19 AM #7
Show All Comments

What's the reason you're reporting this blog entry?

Are you sure you want to report this blog entry as spam?


Fred Hernden, CMI

Albuquerque area Master Inspector
Ask me a question
Spam prevention

Additional Information