Photos From New Homes
If you are buying a brand new home and are undecided as to whether you need an inspection or not, here are a few photos showing why investing in the services of a qualified private inspector working ONLY for you can actually save you money. Possibly a LOT of money. None of the homes in the photos had been lived in, but all had presumably passed any municipal inspections. Keep in mind that the the work schedule of the city inspectors keeps them from being able to spend much time on each individual home. Also, some small towns and unincorporated areas have no inspections at all. Unfortunately, some subcontractors use this opportunity to take shortcuts. If you buy a home where they have done this, the expense for correcting their sloppy work will fall on your shoulders if not discovered before you complete your purchase.

Single left click on any photo to enlarge it

Photo #25
Better be skinny to use this!
Code requirements mandate a MINIMUM of 15 inches from the center line of the throne to a vanity, side wall, or similar obstruction. Here, the clearance was 11 inches. To make things worse, the toilet paper holder was thoughtfully installed on the side of the vanity. My bet is that it would be knocked off after less than a month of use, leaving someone with a sore spot also.

Photo #26
No flashing at roof-to-wall junction
This type of "hidden" issue can ultimately be a real problem. Without the required metal flashing to waterproof this joint, rot damage is a certainty. Unfortunately, it wouldn't show up for several years after the warranty was up. The vinyl/metal covering over the soffit assembly below would hide any damage until the rot was so severe that the cladding literally fell off.

Photo #27
Incorrect type of fixture and wire
This is the underside of a deck. It gets wet here! An interior fixture was used which is open on the top and in no way waterproof. In short, it wasn't a type approved for this location. Also, the wiring used is not a type approved for exposure on the exterior of a home. 


Photo #28
Ground wire not connected
Look carefully at the top wire in the photo and you will see it is not connected to the terminal strip. It's just barely resting on the other wires. That means that the ground connection for this circuit is minimal at best, and not adequate to do its job when needed.  Also, this panel manufacturer allows a maximum of two ground wires under any given screw -- not three. Poor connections can result. Frankly, this is just sloppy work by the electrician. He saved a couple minutes bunching up these wires instead of using the available terminal openings above these.

Photo #29
Neutral not connected
This one is more serious. Look carefully at the upper pair of white wires and you'll see one that isn't actually under the screw in the terminal bar. Unlike the ground wires, the neutral wires always carry current and MUST be securely connected to avoid overheating or arcing.

Photo #30
Looks like a pretty stout post...what's wrong here?
The code says you can't do this, that's what. All the load for this post is transferred through a single bolt. That's not allowed. Also, the bolt used is a simple zinc-plated type not approved for use with this type of pressure treated lumber due to the likelihood of corrosion. When that single bolt rusts, you've got a really big problem.