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FHA Inspection-Off to the Bath

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Ben Vukicevich SRA

Thread Starter
Senior Member
Joined
Feb 9, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
New Jersey
A short one tonight as I have to get lots of work out of here by Monday:

The Bathroom (and powder room)

We wander into the bathroom-Things needed: flashlight and nightlight.

First, turn on the light switch to make sure it is operational. Do the FHA "pressure test dance" by turning on the sink, tub and flushing the toilet. Watch for water flow restriction. Check for hot water at the sink and tub. We don't want to see steam coming out in lieu of hot water.

Check under the sink for leaks at the drain lines. Make sure there is a trap in the drain line. Using your feet, do the FHA "straddle" around the toilet to insure that there is no rotted subflooring around the toilet base. If you go through to the first floor, there is rotted subflooring by the toilet. LOL

Check the condition of the finish floor for a 2 year remaining life-no holes, rips, lifting from moisture-check ceramic floors for tight grout. Check the tile grout, if present, around the tub to insure that it is watertight. If it looks "iffy/bulgy" give a gentle push in suspect areas to insure there is no water damage beneath the tiles. Check fiberglass surrounds for holes/cracks, also.

Open/close window for proper operation. Check for peeling lead based paint on window trim, floor wood trim, if any and of course, in between the main window and storm window and also for broken window glass.

Make sure there are no holes in the walls/ceiling or peeling wall/ceiling paint. Look for mold....

Check the fixtures for a 2 year remaining life-chips/rusted bowls&tubs
Now's a good time to do the appraiser trick for the actual age of the house-flip off the toilet tank top and read the date of manufacture on the lid or inside the tank-the toilet being one of the last things installed in a home. Of course, if the bath has been remodeled, you won't know the original date of the home but you will know the date of the last bath remodel. FHA being big on the actual age of the subject for lead-base paint issues, it's good to get an exact age. The toilet and the electrical service panel are usually good sources. Yep, you can hang your professional estimate of age on a toilet sometimes.

Use your "baby nightlight" to check the electrical outlet for proper operation, if present.

Depending on your degree of confidence, many appraisers have been requesting that the owners operate windows and systems to avoid liability, if something should break during inspection. I have no problem with operating things because if they break, well, they didn't meet MPS did they and would have to be repaired whether I operated them or the owner.

Ben
 

rtubbs

Junior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Sounds thorough Ben. Where's the requirement for operable windows in the bath? If that's a requirement, then a bath without a window is a problem, no? I've only addressed inoperable windows in bedrooms.
 

Ben Vukicevich SRA

Thread Starter
Senior Member
Joined
Feb 9, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
New Jersey
r

Good question. I'm glad I'm getting some feedback because we learn by discussing stuff. I wish the rest of the lurkers would add some stuff for their areas of the country.

Windows come under "ventilation" and should be operational, if present in any room.

Baths without windows or solid glass panes usually have ceiling/wall mounted fans for ventilation, if not, you're going to have moisture problems.

Ben
 
Joined
Jan 13, 2002
Professional Status
Retired Appraiser
State
Florida
Ben,

Thank you very much for your most excellent posts regarding FHA inspections!!!!

I'm reading them all and you are so thorough that I can't come up with much if anything to add. I consider myself very thorough but, you are adding to my list and I very much appreciate it.
 

Paul Ness MAI

Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Pennsylvania
UNBELIEVABLE ! Glad I got out of residential appraising many years ago. These FHA inspections are incredible. What's left for the home inspector to do? I asked earlier if you guys and gals get paid extra and someone said no. Then why do you do them?
 
Joined
Jan 13, 2002
Professional Status
Retired Appraiser
State
Florida
Paul,

I do charge at least $75 extra for FHAs. I currently have only 1 client that orders FHAs with me since I tell the truth and charge too much.

Right now, I don't care. Just hoping I can get on to do some reviews at a reasonable fee now that the most recent review system with unbelievably low fees is gone.
 

Ben Vukicevich SRA

Thread Starter
Senior Member
Joined
Feb 9, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
New Jersey
Paul,

Hey, we've only gotten to the bath. There's lot's more to go. We haven't gotten to inadequate framing, basements, crawl spaces, foundations, etc.

Or your favorite that "burned" you on your personal home sale: "Other".... which would be where you live in PA, AKA in 4150.2 as the Defective Construction Conditions capital of the world. LOL Hang around.

Hell, don't be a chicken, get on the FHA panel and do a few for some extra part-time spending cash....two a month would get you a really nice European sports car..

Actually, we all get paid lots more for an FHA than a regular conventional appraisal, it's just that no one will own up to it. Plus, after you have been doing it for so long, you spend 10-15 minutes extra looking at the house. No big deal.

Ben
 
Joined
Jan 17, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Virginia
Ben, many thanks for thinking of this. Really great. I have seen several things I hadn't thought of doing.

You also confirmed that I am not the only one doing something the way I do it.

On the bathroom without a window I always require a window or positive ventilation for FHA and/or VA. On conventional I call the lender to find out if they want it "as is" and mentioned or "as repaired" with installed ventilation.

Thanks again.
 

wade3333

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Licensed Appraiser
State
Georgia
Ben, very good, I thought I was the only one that used a baby night light. Works great. Wade
 

Mountain Man

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Georgia
I have a tester with three little lights to indicate if the plug is working properly, if there is an open ground, or if the wiring is reversed. The funny thing is that the instructions say: if no lights come on, then there is no power. Well duuuhh.

Mell.
 
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