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Standard Practice For Inspecting A

Discussion in 'General Appraisal Discussion' started by Kate, Dec 20, 2004.

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  1. Kate

    Kate Senior Member

    0
    Aug 24, 2003
    Professional Status:
    Certified Residential Appraiser
    State:
    New Hampshire
    What exactly do you do when you come across one. If the basement is dry at the viewing, how do you know it works?
     
  2. Tim Hicks (Texas)

    Tim Hicks (Texas) Elite Member
    Gold Supporting Member

    54
    Jan 15, 2002
    Professional Status:
    Certified Residential Appraiser
    State:
    Texas
    I dunno, what is a basement? For that matter, what is a sump pump? :rainfro:


    If the basement is dry, then try turning the pump on manually or pour some water in the pump area?
     
  3. Richard Carlsen

    Richard Carlsen Elite Member

    0
    Jan 15, 2002
    Professional Status:
    Licensed Appraiser
    State:
    Michigan
    Boy do we worry about the neatest things.

    Now a sump pump.

    Well, here's how it is done. You look in the corners of the basement and if you see a hole you walk over to it and look down, being careful not to fall in. Then you say to yourself: My God...IT'S A SUMP PUMP. A REAL SUMP PUMP. I FOUND ONE!!!!! HOLY COW.... (or words to that effect) You then note on your data collection sheet that there is a sump pump. Then you back away carefully so you do not trip and fall in.

    When back at the office, filling in the 1004, when you come to the item marked "sump pump" you answer "yes".

    That's it. Not much involved but hey you are talking about an electric motor that lives it's life with it's feet in the water with a float that tells the motor when to turn on and off.

    If the basement is dry, don't worry about the sump operating. If it is wet, you'll know if it works. In the meantime, you can assume it does. Otherwise, you will have to get a hose, connect it and start running water into the hole. It was -16 this morning at my house and if I were doing data visits, I would not worry about the air conditioning units running or furnaces cycling when it is 95 degrees.

    So if the basement is dry, just let sleeping sump pumps lie. The fact that there is one is all you have to note. Remember, you are collecting data; not doing a house inspection.
     
  4. Ryan Nyberg

    Ryan Nyberg Senior Member

    0
    Jan 15, 2002
    Professional Status:
    Gvmt Agency, FNMA, HUD, VA etc.
    State:
    Washington
    How do you know if the dishwasher works? Do you go through a full cycle? What if there are no dirty dishes? What about the Trash Compator? Garbage disposal? AC unit during winter furnace during summer?

    If you really want to test get some water and fill up the hole. If you don't have water available drink plenty of water before your inspections. :lol:
     
  5. Kate

    Kate Senior Member

    0
    Aug 24, 2003
    Professional Status:
    Certified Residential Appraiser
    State:
    New Hampshire
    I see them at least three times a month. I have never seen one while it was running, and I have never tested one. Just wondering if I am just being lazy here. Especially since water and moisture is one of the biggest problems a home can have.

    Not sure I agree with that. If it hasn't rained in a while then I would guess there would be a possibility of a dry basement. :shrug: My basement is dry as a bone right now, but is like a river when it rains real hard. But that is besides the point.

    So, you all are telling me that you do not check the sump pump, just note that it is there.

    Point taken and agreed.

    However,

    You can function in a house without a dishwasher (although I DON"T KNOW HOW!! :p ). Same goes for trash compactor, disposal, and AC (in my market anyway). But in my market the furnace is VERY important. ;) But no, I have never checked one in the summer. I may be changing that though.

    This summer I did a sale on an older house. Obviously the furnace was not on. It was FHW and was "hooked up". Or at least it looked like it was. I even took pictures of it and didn't see anything wrong with it.

    Now the sale fell through and the owners want me to re-cert (Just looking to see if you are paying attention, it's a new inspection and order). Turns out that since my first visit, the house has a new furnace and I am told that the hot water heater was being used as back up for over a year b/c the furnace was dead. :eek: How was I supposed to know??? They were both hooked up to pipes and wires. :p

    The dead furnace absolutely effects value. IMO, so does a working sump pump in a flood zone.

    I am thinking about checking both sump pump and furnace from now on due to their importance. Just wanted to see if this is going over the top and to see what the standard is for you guys?
     
  6. DTB

    DTB Elite Member

    31
    Jun 11, 2004
    Professional Status:
    Certified Residential Appraiser
    State:
    Illinois
    Kate,

    I wouldn't get tangled up in the furnace issue if I were you. If you suspect smething, maybe you can require an expert check it out.

    The sump pump issue is a bit over the top, however. It's $ 150 item with a lifetime warranty at Menard's similar to a disposal.

    Why does any lender want/ need to know about a disposal!?!?!!? :lol:
     
  7. Mountain Man

    Mountain Man Elite Member

    27
    Jan 15, 2002
    Professional Status:
    Certified General Appraiser
    State:
    Georgia
    If there's not any standing water up to your ankles, mark Yes in the lil' block and let the termite man worry about it. B)
    But as for the non-working pump and furnace..... if they appear to not be working, I make sure I kill the deal. :twisted: Jes' kidding, just say it appears to not be in normal working order, and let the termite man and HVAC man worry about it. Just disclose it and move on. If it's a sale, that will be a contract item that will have to be addressed.
     
  8. TC

    TC Elite Member
    Gold Supporting Member

    29
    Jan 31, 2002
    Professional Status:
    Certified Residential Appraiser
    State:
    Pennsylvania
    Kate,

    You're thinking too much. The final fair market value is based on all items being in working condition. Let the home inspector figure it out. I see sump pumps all the time, never checked one out, never got a call back.

    TC
     
  9. Linda M Lynch

    Linda M Lynch Junior Member

    0
    Dec 12, 2002
    Professional Status:
    Licensed Appraiser
    State:
    Wisconsin
    That is why there are addendum stating that we are NOT inspectors and that they should hire inspectors if there are problems with these type of things.
     
  10. Otis Key

    Otis Key Elite Member

    0
    May 15, 2004
    Professional Status:
    Certified Residential Appraiser
    State:
    New Mexico
    Kate - didn't you post something once about having to make a run the WC in vacant house? Here's your chance to see if it works. :lol: :lol: :lol:

    I have to agree with Tim - what's a basement? What's a sump pump? What's wet?
     
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