Common Inspector Mistakes

(11) Specialized procedures‐‐Procedures such
as environmental testing, elevation measurement,
calculations and any method employing destructive
testing that damages otherwise sound materials or

Common inspector mistakes regarding slab-on-ground foundations



Failure to understand the word deficient as applied to slab-on-ground foundations

Deficiency‐‐In the reasonable judgment of the inspector, a condition that:
(A) adversely and materially affects the performance of a system, or component; or
(B) constitutes a hazard to life, limb, or property as specified by these standards of practice



Going beyond the TREC Standards of Practice


§535.228. Standards of Practice: Minimum
Inspection Requirements for Structural Systems.
(a) Foundations. The inspector shall:
(1) render a written opinion as to the
performance of the foundation; and
(2) report:
(A) the type of foundations;
(B )the vantage point from which the crawl
space was inspected;
(3) generally report present and visible
indications used to render the opinion of adverse
performance,such as:
(A) binding, out‐of‐square, non‐latching
(B) framing or frieze board separations;
(C) sloping floors;
(D) window, wall, floor, or ceiling cracks or
separations; and
(E) rotating, buckling, cracking, or deflecting
masonry cladding.
(4) report as Deficient:
(A) deteriorated materials;
(B) deficiencies in foundation components
such as; beams, joists, bridging, blocking, piers,
posts, pilings, columns, sills or subfloor;
(C) deficiencies in retaining walls related to
foundation performance;
(D) exposed or damaged reinforcement;

(5) The inspector is not required to:
(B) provide an exhaustive list of indicators of
possible adverse performance; or
(b) Grading and drainage. The inspector shall:
(1) report as Deficient:
(A) drainage around the foundation that is
not performing;
(B) deficiencies in grade levels around the
foundation; and
(C) deficiencies in installed gutter and
downspout systems.

(2) The inspector is not required to:
(A) inspect flatwork or detention/retention
ponds (except as related to slope and drainage);
(B) determine area hydrology or the presence
of underground water; or
(C) determine the efficiency or performance
of underground or surface drainage systems


Recommending repair when repair is not necessary


Vagueness to the point of incoherence


Recommending consulting with a foundation expert

This phrase begs the question: what is a foundation expert.


Recommending a quote from a foundation repair contractor

This is a serious mistake that makes you look unprofessional. The contract stipulates that all inspectors retained by the buyer must be licensed by TREC or otherwise permitted by law to make inspections, Foundation repair contractors are not licensed by TREC and there is no law on the books that permit them to make inspections for a real estate transaction.

The fact is that the buyer under the terms of the standard TREC contract has no authority to have a foundation repair contractor go to the property and make an inspection.




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