The winter holidays are a time for celebration, and that means more cooking, home decorating, entertaining, and an increased risk of fire and accidents. Slab-2-Shingles recommends that you follow these guidelines to help make your holiday season safer and more enjoyable.
Toys and Ornaments
Children and Pets
Slab-2-Shingles Wishes You A Safe & Joyous Holiday Season!
A home inspection is an all-encompassing examination of the condition of a home. The home inspection process is often but not always performed at the time of the sale of the home. A home is one of the most important purchases one will ever make. A home inspection is an inexpensive way to discover the universal condition of a home. It is important to conduct a home inspection to avoid a costly mistake by purchasing a property in need of major repairs. Even if you think you have found a “dream home,” it is a home inspector’s responsibility to let you know that your “dream home” may not be just right.
A certified home inspector is a professional who will conduct an inspection of the general condition of the home. A good home inspection will assist a buyer in understanding exactly what they are about to acquire. A home may look move in ready, but an inspector will cover features of the house such as electrical wiring, plumbing, roofing, insulation, as well as structural features of the home and may unveil issues that are not noticeable to the buyer’s eye. As a buyer, you are making a vast investment, and it is important to understand exactly what you are purchasing. Having a certified home inspector conduct a thorough inspection of the prospective property, could be compared to taking out an insurance policy against all potential operating costs.
There are many different types of home inspection processes that you may want to conduct before the purchase of a home. First and most importantly, you would need a general or residential inspection performed on the home. The certified home inspector would inspect the structure, exterior, roof, electrical, plumbing, HVAC, interior, insulation and ventilation. Once the inspection is completed, the home inspector will generally provide the buyer with a report suggesting any improvements or repairs deemed necessary to bring the home up to current standards. Home inspections may often reveal problems with a home that could be pricey to fix. This could be used as a great tool in purchasing negotiations with the seller. As the buyer you may be able to negotiate the price depending on what the inspector has found. If flaws were found within the home, the buyer now would have a couple more options in negotiations. A buyer could negotiate a credit with the sellers, have the seller pay for repairs before the closing, purchase the home as is, or walk away from the purchase if the issues seem too problematic.
Another home inspection process a buyer may want to have before the purchase of a home would be a termite/wood destroying organism inspection. This certified inspector would check for signs of structural damage caused by wood boring insects. These insects may cause problems down the road. A general home inspector may perform this inspection for an additional cost, or recommend a WDO/WDI inspector to the buyer.
A radon inspection is also important when purchasing a home. Radon is a radioactive gaseous element formed by breakdown of radium, that occurs naturally especially in areas over granite, and is considered hazardous to health. Radon gas from natural sources can accumulate in homes, especially in confined areas such as attics and basements. Radon levels fluctuate naturally, therefore testing for high levels is important. A radon test consists of using a radon kit that would be hung or placed in the lowest habitable floor of the house for two to seven days. After the kit has sat for the required amount of time, the inspector would then send the kit to a lab for analysis. If a radon test comes back high, some ways to alleviate the radon could be: sealing concrete slab floors, basement foundations, and water drainage systems. This could be a costly fix, suggesting the importance of radon inspections. Some general home inspectors will also do radon testing at an additional cost. It is important you ask your inspector if he performs these inspections, or for recommendations.
Other inspections that you may want before purchasing a home may be well water testing, oil tank testing and septic tank testing. General home inspectors may be qualified to perform all of these tests and/or inspections for additional fees.
If at all possible, it is recommended to attend your home inspection process. This is a valuable educational opportunity. Never pass up the chance to see your forthcoming home through the eyes of an expert. The cost of a home inspection may vary depending upon the size, region, and age of the house. A home inspection could take anywhere from 1-5 hours, again, depending upon the size and age of the home. It is not an inspector’s responsibility to correct, or repair any potential issues found in the home. An inspector may recommend repair, or to seek out skilled professionals in each trade for further information.
A home inspection will definitely give the buyer peace of mind and put the buyer’s mind at ease that the home is in good shape. It can also become a negotiation tool in closing, and could inform the buyer of potential future maintenance and upkeep. A seller of a home may also request a home inspection before the home is put on the market. This may assist the seller in setting a price, correct any issues with the home before it is put on the market, or merely having a pre-inspection report available for buyers informing them that the seller has nothing to hide.
No one ever wants to find water leaking from their ceiling. Whether you are home when the leak starts or come home to it, it is important that you take immediate action to avoid further damage to your home.
If you find water dripping from a bulges or discoloration in your ceiling, it’s likely that water is pooling on the other side of that bulge or dark spot. Grab a bucket, trash can, or some other container and place it under the site of the drip or suspected leak. You may even want to consider propping up a board inside the container so the drips hit the board and not the accumulated water. This will minimize the repetitive dripping sound.
Next, take an old screwdriver, locate the center of the bulge where water is accumulating and puncture it right in the middle. Though it might seem strange to punch a hole in your ceiling to stop a leak, the new hole will allow the water to drain smoothly and relieve pressure on the rest of your ceiling. If water accumulates and pools, the entire ceiling could collapse.
If you are confident you know where the leak is coming from and can safely get to the source, cover the exterior surface with a large tarp. If you can’t reach it, or feel unsafe doing so, it would be best to immediately contact a roofing professional. Many credible roofing companies offer emergency tarping services. As you may already know, unfortunately if your roof is actively leaking due to weather, a roofing professional can not repair the leak until that weather has stopped. The tarping service will act as a temporary fix to minimize the damage inside your home until your roofer can fix the problem.
An experienced roofing professional will inspect your roof both from the exterior of the roof itself as well as the inside of your home, typically through the attic. Inspecting the underside of the roof sheeting can show signs of water damage, however it is not a foolproof method so inspecting the roof for damage is needed as well.
It is important to act quickly when it comes to a roof leak. Leaky roofs never fix themselves or get better on their own. Even if the leak isn’t bad yet. Get it fixed now. Often we hear from homeowners that they noticed a stain on their ceiling or possibly some bubbling for awhile but thought it wasn’t serious. Avoidance and ignoring will not fix a leak in your roof. Many times by the time you notice damage within your home it is already too late. The National Roofing Contractors Association recommends inspecting your roof twice a year, in the fall and spring. Here is what to look for to prevent a fixable issue from turning into a damaging and costly repair:
If your roof is fewer than 15 years old, it can probably be spot-repaired instead of requiring a total replacement. Just remember that a small leak will not go away — it will only get worse.
Roof leaks are typically just signs of a much larger problem. Both danger and the probability of structural erosion increase if unaddressed. Regular inspections are your best defense against a leaky roof. Be vigilant, search for leaks, and talk with your contractor about the condition of your roof regularly.
When looking at the house of your dreams, look for consistency in the architectural style and building materials. A single-story cottage-style house built in the ’40s with plaster walls and clapboard exterior siding that has added a new wing with modern building products may be an indication of unauthorized modifications and substandard workmanship. Should this be the case, it could add up to big bucks to correct and a severe heartache for the unsuspecting buyer.
House fires caused by faulty electrical wiring are common. Modern homes have an ample supply of power and electrical outlets. Older homes do not.
It’s typical to see extension cords running from room to room in older homes. This places a burden on the electrical system, outlets and cords and thus could lead to a fire. Another common electrical problem found in all ages of homes is exposed electrical wires. Any wire that is exposed is susceptible to physical damage. If this occurs, it’s sure to wreak havoc. Open splice wire (when wire is conjoined using only electrical tape and/or wire connectors) is a typical do-it-yourself job and is common in garages, attics and crawlspaces as well as above dropped ceilings. This is high priority, however, and should be corrected by a licensed electrician.
Infrared thermography (commonly called infrared imaging or thermal imaging) is an advanced, non-invasive technology that allows an inspector to identify deficiencies in buildings that can’t be revealed using conventional visual inspection methods.
Thermographic cameras detect radiation in the long-infrared range of the electromagnetic spectrum and produce images of that radiation. The amount of radiation emitted by an object, called “Emissivity”, increases with temperature; therefore, thermography allows for variations in temperature to be identified.
*Please note that FSG predominantly uses thermal imaging to find moisture damage and pipe leaks.*
You love everything about the house: the floor plan, the neighborhood, the backyard, the kitchen, even the colors. But it has some mold and the seller is unwilling to do anything about it. Take it or leave it. How do you decide?
The most important thing is determining the source of the mold. A light dusting of mold on a few surfaces around an empty house because the air conditioning was turned off is not a reason to be freaked out. Knowing what has caused the mold is the first step to figuring out how much there is and how to fix it.
Once you determine that it is a roof or plumbing leak, for example, and the location, then you can begin to evaluate the extent of the problem. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has set a standard of 10 square feet of mold as the maximum area that can be safely cleaned up by a homeowner. But sometimes there is more mold hiding inside walls and ceilings that is not visible. This is where the advice of a mold professional can make the difference. A pro can determine the source of the moisture causing the mold, if it is not obvious, and give you a good idea of the extent of the infestation.
From there, you can get an estimate of the cost to remediate the mold, and add in any additional expense for time you won’t be able to occupy the home while it is being remediated. Once you have a number and a time-frame, you can make a sensible decision as to whether to go ahead and make the purchase.
If you are purchasing a home with mold Slab-2-Shingles can help you with all your mold concerns. Have one of our inspectors give you a free estimate. We have been solving mold problems here in Southwest Florida for over a decade. No matter what your homes mold situation is we can help.
Not all molds are visible. Signs of mold are not always obvious. It is very possible for mold to be growing in spaces you cannot see. In places such as under the carpet, pads and rugs or behind drywall, paneling and wallpaper. Some other common places include air handling units and their drain pans from sitting water, liners of the a/c duct work that have gotten wet from condensation and roof materials that became wet from roof leaks or improper insulation. An air quality inspection can find this invisible mold.
An air quality test is a sample of air taken from inside that is then analyzed at a lab. The lab tests for particles like mold spores, asbestos, pollen and other allergens. Each air sample contains 75L of compressed air providing a small insight into the environment. These tests will show what you cannot see with your eyes.
A mold test is a way to quickly tell if you have mold or not. These tests use a swap of the area of concern. This swap is then put into a liquid that will turn green or purple. If this liquid turns green there is no mold present. However if the liquid turns purple then mold is present. The mold test is quick way to test for mold although, it will not tell you the type or level of mold. A mold test will also not detect mold spores in the air.
This answer depends on what you are looking to find out about. We recommend that you use an air quality test since it is more accurate. An air quality test provides the most information about the environment of the samples. A mold test is a good way to get a quick answer. If you are concerned with if there is mold growth on a table. The best way to determine if mold is in your home is with an air quality test.
Here in Southwest Florida the answer is YES! The high humidity and high temperatures increase your risk of mold. Florida is known for its water and mold is known for loving the water also. Schedule your air quality test NOW!
It has been over a year since Irma landed here in Southwest Florida. Slab-2-Shingles is seeing a lot of mold issues caused from small amounts of water getting into the home. In most cases this water has been unnoticed and/or untreated for over a year, therefore, creating the perfect conditions for mold spores to form.
Mold is in the air! There is always mold in the air. It is almost impossible to have a 100% spore free test result. It is only in high concentrations that the mold spores become harmful. Your home only needs the water to get onto the organic material like drywall or wood beams. Once the moisture collects, the combination of poor ventilation and high humidity create the perfect environment.
The high winds from Irma forced water into a lot of homes. Even if your roof does not have an active leak water may have gotten into your home. The winds where so strong and carried large amounts of water. Our inspectors are seeing more and more cases of water in walls and attics. These are homes that did not show any signs of an active leak. When their roof is inspected the inspectors see signs where water has entered the home.
Slab-2-Shingles can conduct an air quality inspection to test for mold spores. We also are experienced in mold remediation. No matter what your mold issues are you can count on us! Our team is professional and just as concerned with your family’s health. You can call our office at 239-262-0058 and schedule an air quality test or remediation.
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In 2001 the State of Florida adopted the 2001 Florida Building code. This code set forth more stringent requirements for the construction of a new home to withstand a hurricane. This new building code became effective on March 1, 2002 for any home that had a building permit issued after that date.
The State of Florida created the Uniform Wind Mitigation Inspection Form. The inspector performing your wind mitigation completes this form. Insurance companies use this form to provide the consumer with discounts on their insurance premiums. This is based on the ability of the home to withstand a hurricane.
A Wind Mitigation Inspector evaluates seven different components of your house during the Wind Mitigation Inspection. We have reviewed these components in a previous article. (What Is A Wind Mitigation and Why Do You NEED It).The first component of the Uniform Wind Mitigation Inspection form asks the inspector to record the building date of the house. For home’s built in 2002 or 2003 the inspector must provide the building permit issue date for the home’s construction.
The first thing a Wind Mitigation Inspector should do when performing a Wind Mitigation Inspection is to determine the year the house was built. This is done by checking the building permits in the town or county to see when the building permit was issued for the construction of the house. The construction completed date and the Certificate of Occupancy date is not critical for a Wind Mitigation Inspection. Therefore the issue date of the permit has the most importance for the inspection.
When answering section one of the Wind Mitigation Inspection form the critical issue is on what date was the building permit for the construction of the house issued. For permits issued after March 1, 2002 the house would have been constructed pursuant to the 2001 Florida Building Code. You should receive a reduction of your hurricane insurance premium. Furthermore section one of the wind mitigation form treats all house construction permits issued after this date equally. This is not true for all of the other sections of the Wind Mitigation Inspection form.
The new 2001 Florida building Code required the use of better materials for certain components of the home. Homes built under the 2001 Building Code are more likely to withstand a hurricane. That is why the permit date is important in the Wind Mitigation Inspection Report.
Any house constructed under a building permit issued before March 1, 2002, the effective date of the 2001 Florida Building Code, pays a higher insurance premium than a house constructed under a permit issued after March 1, 2002.
A State Licensed Wind Mitigation Inspector must conduct your Wind Mitigation Inspection. For twenty years Slab-2-Shingles, located in Naples Florida, has been doing home and wind mitigation inspections. Licensed in the State of Florida and Slab-2-Shingles services Naples, Marco Island, Bonita Springs and Estero. Slab-2-Shingles has performed thousands of these inspections.
In conclusion the construction date of your home plays an important factor in your wind mitigation inspection. Also, the construction date affects your hurricane insurance rate.