Home Structural System and Inspections

In the United States, the non-profit organization, The American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI), is the "largest and most respected professional association for home inspectors in North America". Through ASHI’s continued efforts, known as ASHI's Standards of Practice -- they cover all of a home's major systems -- are now parts of many statutory sections of state legislation and are recognized by consumers as the authoritative standard for professional home inspection.

ASHI's Standards of Practice and the Importance of a Home's "Structural Systems"

The importance of your home's Structural System evaluation may be be noted from ASHI's inspection outline below. This is a critical part of a home's inspection.

  1. Introduction
  2. Purpose and Scope
  3. Structural System
  4. Exterior
  5. Roof System
  6. Plumbing System
  7. Electrical System
  8. Heating System
  9. Air Conditioning Systems
  10. Interior
  11. Insulation and Ventilation
  12. Fireplaces and Solid Fuel Burning Appliances
  13. General Limitations and Exclusions


ASHI's Structural System Inspection -- What to Expect and Prepare for...

The inspector shall:

  1. inspect
    1. the structural components including the foundation and framing
    2. by probing a representative number of structural components where deterioration is suspected or where clear indications of possible deterioration exist. Probing is NOT required when probing would damage any finished surface or where no deterioration is visible or presumed to exist
  2. describe the:
    1. methods used to inspect under-floor crawl [this means basements: More information on wet-basement problems], space and attics.
    2. foundation [this includes basements: More information on wet-basement problems]
    3. floor structure
    4. wall structure
    5. ceiling structure
    6. roof structure
The inspector is NOT required to:
  1. provide any engineering or architectural service or analysis.
  2. offer an opinion as to the adequacy of any structural system or component

Wednesday, April 9, 2008 13:46 PST