Let me start by saying, 'I am not a home inspector, and none of this is intended to replace a home inspection.' There, that is my disclaimer for this post. If you are selling or purchasing a home in the Orlando real estate market, I recommend you know a little about four point inspections.
First, what are the four points? The four items covered in a four point inspection include: roof, electrical, plumbing and HVAC. Why do you need a four point inspection? If you are purchasing a home that is more than 10 years old, your insurance company is likely to require a four point inspection report, before they will issue homeowners insurance. Is a four point inspection a home inspection? No, it is not. A four point just provides some background information about the age, type and installation of the four items. It does not replace a full home inspection.
You are selling your house, and already have insurance, why should you care about a four point inspection? If your home fails one or more of the four points, buyers may have difficulty obtaining insurance which may stop your sale. What types of things can cause one of the points to fail? We had a lot of wild weather here in the Orlando area back in 2018, and a ton of roof replacement, insurance claims have been paid over the last few years. The response from many, if not most, insurance companies has been a reluctance to write new policies for homes with roofs over ten years old. It is a little crazy, since your roof could be good for another 10-15 years, but an 11 year old roof could sink a sale. There is a possibility, if your home was plumbed in the early to mid '90's, it may have polybutylene piping. Unfortunately, that is another potential four point fail. There are electrical panels, such as Federal Pacific, or Zinsco that can cause issues, especially in older homes. An old HVAC system that is not operating properly, or in disrepair could lead to things like mold, so this could also be a red flag to insurance companies.
If you are interested in a property, or prior to putting your home on the market there are a few things you can do to be more prepared. I suggest doing a quick check of permit records to get some background information, also a seller's disclosure can be a great way to get more information about these items. When viewing a home, I recommend checking out the condition of the roof, looking for any exposed plumbing such as the water heater lines, opening up the electrical panel to look for the brand name, and looking for a date on the AC. You may still be surprised by the findings in a home inspection, but if you keep an eye out for these four points, you will be better prepared whether listing or purchasing.