Home Inspection Checklist

Platinum Real Estate Network, Inc.  knows that one of the most important tasks when buying or selling a home is to have complete inspections. It is always wise to make your offer contingent on professional inspections. Professional inspections can uncover areas of the house that need attention and can be taken care of before you sell or purchase a property. If something comes up that is serious, you can then have an out with your contingency.

We offer you this handy pre-inspection checklist for use when looking to buy or sell a home or property. This checklist will not replace a professional inspection, but will help you understand and uncover areas that may be of concern. This checklist will guide you through the basic inspections and help spot areas of concern before you make an offer or place your home on the market. Following the guidelines of this checklist can help you save money later.

Pre-Inspection Checklist
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Exterior Notes
  • Grade

Grade slopes away from the house.
No standing water.
Homes at the bottom of a hill.
Water is directed away for the house.
  • Driveway

Driveway slopes away from the garage.
No large cracks.
No excessive weed growth.
No heaving or uneven spots.
No potholes or missing paver stones.
Drain at entrance of garage for driveways that slope down.
  • Foundation

Appears in good shape.
Foundation is above the grade.
Foundation appears straight.
No large cracks.
No crumbling.
No water stains or signs of dampness.
No moss or mildew growth.
  • Structure

Appears in good shape.
No rotting of the sill plate.
No missing siding or bricks.
Walls appear straight.
Roofline appears straight with no sagging.
Porch or doorsill appear straight.

  • Roof

Check from the ground using binoculars.
Appears to be in good shape.
No missing shingles or tiles.
Edges are not lifted.
No moss growth.
Shingles are not worn or torn.
Flat roofs should only be inspected by a professional.


  • Chimney

Check from the ground using binoculars.
Appears to be straight.
No large cracks.
No missing mortar between the bricks.
No missing bricks or stones.
Not separating from the house.
No black tar leaching on outside.
You may want the chimney cleaned by a professional before the sale of a home.
  • Eaves troughs & Downspouts

Securely attached to the roof.
No cracks or joint gaps.
No excess chalking.
Directs water away from the house.
Have not eroded away the landscaping.
  • Windows & Doors

Fit well in openings.
Open smoothly with no binding.
Hardware in working order.
No rotting or missing trim.
All weather stripping intact.
No missing or broken glass.
No torn screens.
Exterior doors are solid core.
In colder climates
Insulated glass in windows and doors.
Storm doors and windows.
  • Garage

Concrete slab with no major cracks.
 At least 6 inch concrete wall.
Door opens and closes smoothly.
Garage door opener works.
Attached Garage
Door to house closes tightly.
Door to house is fire rate steel door.
Door to house closes automatically.
5/8 wallboard on ceiling and common walls.
Interior Notes
  • Basement

No large cracks.
No standing water.
No water on walls, especially corners.
Look for sagging floor joist.
No damaged floor joist.
No rotted sill plate.
Finished basements
No cracks in plaster or wall board.
No musty smell. (sign of water)
No warped molding. (sign of water)
No water stains in ceiling.
  • Structure

Appears in good shape.
No cracks in plaster.
Floors do not bounce.
No sagging in ceilings.
Windows fit tightly in openings.
Doors close tightly and latch.
Check walls for bowing out or in.
  • Plumbing

All plumbing fixtures work.
All drains drain freely.
Drains do not gurgle or spout air.
Fixtures do not drip.
Check for water pressure.
Check tile in showers for cracks and gaps.
In the Basement or crawl space.
Inspect plumbing for workmanship and neatness.
No leaks around joints.
No water around water heater.
Check age of water heater.
Inspect any other plumbing device.
  • Heating & Air Conditioning

Determine type of system, forced air, radiant heat, electric, etc.
Inspect system for age and general condition.
Check flu's and vents.
System is clean and free of debris.
Turn thermostat to highest setting and check heating.
Turn thermostat to lowest setting and check cooling.
  • Electrical

Lights and fixtures turn on.
Outlets and switches have cover plates.
Lights and ceiling fans installed properly.
Outlets are properly grounded.
(Purchase a receptacle tester at local hardware)
Ground Fault Interrupt, (GFI), outlet in the bathrooms.
GFI outlets, in the kitchen near the sink.
GFI outlets outside and in the garage.
Outlets every 12 feet in the house.
Main panel seems in order.
  • Floors

Floors are even and true.
No excessive creaking..
Flooring material is not worn out.
Hardwood floor is laid appropriately.
Carpet is tacked down completely with no wrinkles.
Tile floors have no cracks.
Flooring material is appropriate to the house.
  • Doors

Doors open and close properly.
Fit well in opening.
Hardware works properly.
Do not scrape along the floor.
Sliding doors open and close smoothly.
All molding is in place and installed properly.
  • Ventilation

Check vents in bathrooms.
Check oven vent in kitchen.
Check dryer vent.
No obstructions inside or outside.
Vents work properly with no noticeable problems.
All vents exhaust freely.
  • Fireplace

Damper and vents open freely.
Determine last cleaning.
No smoke stains above fireplace.
No cracks or other damage in fire box.
No obstructions to the flue.
Chimney seems to be in working order.
  • Kitchen

Cabinets are sturdy and properly aligned.
Doors and drawer open and close smoothly.
No significant damage to countertops.
Check under sink for rotting.
Kitchen Appliances
Appliances are free of damage.
Dishwasher operates properly.
Oven and Stove operates properly.
Refrigerator operates properly.
Professional Inspections Notes
Termite & Insects

Passed    Failed

Mechanical Systems
Heating                 Passed    Failed

Air Conditioning   Passed    Failed

Plumbing               Passed    Failed

Electrical               Passed    Failed

Appliances            Passed    Failed

Gas                        Passed    Failed


Passed    Failed

  • Roof

Years Left            Replace

  • Chimney

Cleaned and Inspected


Passed    Failed

Required Inspections

Radon               Passed    Failed

Asbestos           Passed    Failed

This pre-inspection checklist is just a guideline for you to follow. As you inspect the house, follow these simple guidelines and take notes. Later you will find that they will help you in your buying process, and could save you money. Remember, always use a professional when you have made your final decision on which house to make your home.