Boston Home Inspection, Inc.
8930 Snow Hill Road
Ooltewah, TN 37363
THE BOSTON HOME INSPECTION
Jim Boston is the president of Boston Home Inspection, Inc.™ and is a State Licensed & Certified Commercial and Residential Real Estate Inspector. His resume includes the following:
- a graduate of the Home Inspection Institute
- a degree in Chemistry from the University of Tennessee
- over 25 years as a corporate sales manager
- certified by The National Environmental Health Association (NEHA) - National Radon Proficiency Program (NRPP) to perform environmental inspections for Radon gas and to inspect the installation of Radon gas remediation systems.
- a member of the The American Society of Home Inspectors
- an affiliate member of The Chattanooga Associations of Realtors
A professional home inspection is a visual examination of a home's systems and components followed by a thorough, concise written report describing their condition at the time of inspection. Our home inspections strictly adhere to the Standards of Practice of the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI), the most respected inspection association in the United States. I don't just adhere to their standards... I'm a long time ASHI member.
What is the purpose of a home inspection? The inspection provides our client with information on any of the home's major problems or defects. The true goal of the home inspection is to reduce the amount of risk involved with a real estate transaction. An inspection does not eliminate all risk, but an Advantage inspector can identify problems that most buyers would overlook.
Our inspection includes an evaluation of the structure, roof, attic, basement or crawl space, foundation, interior, exterior, electrical system, plumbing system, heating system, air conditioning system, and ventilation system. All exposed structural elements, such as roofing material, sheathing, siding, sills, joists, and foundation walls will be visually inspected. The inspector will look for signs of unusual distress, i.e. sags in roof, leaning or bulging walls, and cracked or displaced foundation components. The inspector will test a representative number of electrical switches, receptacles, and fixtures. The cover will be removed from the main electrical panel and any sub-panels to identify the type of wiring and its condition. The inspector will operate the heating system and the cooling system, weather permitting. All plumbing fixtures connected to a drain will be checked for hot and cold functional flow and drainage. Evidence of past water penetration into the basement or crawlspaces is of primary concern to the inspector. All built-in kitchen appliances, as well as, the refrigerator will be checked and operated. Interior windows will be sampled, doors operated, and ceilings, walls and floors checked. The roof, siding, and the foundation grading are the primary elements inspected on the exterior.
It is important to note that, even though an inspector may have a specialized or expert knowledge of a particular area, a home inspection covers many aspects of a home, such as, plumbing, electrical, roofing, etc. Home inspectors perform a home inspection at a "generalist" level. Time, accessibility, and cost limit the home inspection. The goal of a home inspection is to significantly reduce the buyer's risk of purchasing a home with an unknown or undisclosed problem and to provide this service at a reasonable price. You are the only one who can determine how much risk is acceptable to you. Your home inspector and the inspection report can help you determine what areas warrant further investigation. A home inspection will not find every problem and is not a guarantee or warranty of the house. Be wary of someone who tells you otherwise.
A VERY IMPORTANT TIP TO YOU FROM BOSTON HOME INSPECTION, Inc. - YOU CAN PROTECT YOUR ERNEST MONEY
Here is a very important tip for anyone about to make an offer to purchase a home. Make sure that you ask your real estate agent to include this clause in every real estate purchase contract. It's a lifesaver!
Inspection Contingency Clause
"This contract is contingent upon the Purchaser’s making, or having made on his behalf by another, a physical inspection of the entire premises. If such an inspection reveals any condition or state of facts unsatisfactory to the Purchaser, at his sole discretion, the Purchaser shall receive back all monies paid hereunder. Upon receipt of said monies, this agreement shall be null and void, and neither party shall be under any obligation whatsoever to the other."
Test for Radon - You owe it to your family
Every homeowner should have his or her home tested for Radon gas. We spend more time in our homes than anywhere else...at least twelve hours a day. If there is an elevated level or Radon gas in your home, you and all of your family members have a risk that is similar to that of a cigarette smoker of developing lung cancer. If you smoke it dramatically elevates your chances of developing cancer. A simple test will determine if Radon gas is a problem and remediation of Radon gas is fairly simple.
The United States Environmental Protection Agency and the Surgeon General of the United States have recommended that all houses should be tested for radon. The following information, obtained from the EPA website, is presented so that you will know why the EPA and Surgeon General recommend radon testing. It also is presented so that you will be able to make an informed decision as to whether or not to have your potential home tested for radon.
- Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas that comes from radioactive decay of uranium in soil, rock, and groundwater
- Radon enters homes primarily through the soil under the structure
- Radon can be a problem in all types of homes - old homes, new homes, drafty homes, insulated homes, homes with basements and homes without basements
- High radon levels have been found in every state and radon levels can vary from home to home within a neighborhood
- Nearly one in 15 American homes has a high level of indoor radon. IN TENNESSEE THE PROBLEM IS MORE SIGNIFICANT. One in six homes has a problem with elevated Radon.
- Radon is the largest source of radiation exposure and risk to the general public
- Radon is a Class A carcinogen
- Radon is the 2nd leading cause of lung cancer, smoking being number one
- Radon causes approximately 21,000 American deaths per year, according to the EPA estimate
- Smokers are at higher risk of developing radon-induced lung cancer than non-smokers
- There are no immediate symptoms of radon-induced lung cancer, with cancer usually occurring 5-25 years after exposure.
- Radon is colorless, odorless and tasteless
- Radon can be detected only through a radon test
- Radon concentrations above the EPA-recommended action level of 4.0 pCi/L can be fixed.
Additional information is available through the American Association of Radon Scientists and Technologists (AARST) at http://www.aarst.org or on the EPA website: http://www.epa.gov/iaq/radon .
This document was prepared by the American Radon Policy Coalition (ARPC), a national not-for-profit organization whose sole mission is to enforce, strengthen, and shape public policy for the prevention of lung cancer caused by needless indoor radon exposure.
CHINESE DRYWALL FACTS
2005 was the most active hurricane year in recorded history. This along with the housing boom during that time caused a shortage in supply of American made drywall. An estimated 550 million pounds of drywall from China was shipped to U.S. ports to help keep up with demand.
During 2007 and 2008, a new phenomenon of rapid corrosion of copper evaporator coils began to occur in newly constructed homes. In many cases, the air conditioning systems failed within 6 months of occupying the home. Several tests conducted by government agencies and private sector companies revealed that the drywall installed in these homes was producing a volatile sulfur gas that created tiny pin holes in the air conditioning system's evaporator coils. These tiny holes allowed the unit's refrigerant to be released, disabling the unit's cooling properties. It was also found to be affecting all of the home's ferrous metal components, including copper ground wires, copper & brass plumbing components, etc. Personal property such as precious metals and mirrors also were affected.
Many of the occupants of these homes complained of respiratory problems including sore throats, coughs, nose bleeds, and sinus headaches.
Since the drywall associated with this problem was imported from China, the media quickly labeled the phenomenon as "Chinese Drywall".
What makes the drywall defective?
The composition of the defective drywall was found to have higher concentrations of elemental sulfur than that found in non defective drywall. (See Executive Summary Released On 10/29/2009 by the Interagency Task Force on Chinese Drywall)
The general public is encouraged to monitor the federal government's drywall investigation at www.drywallresponse.gov.
Chinese drywall is a potential health risk and is in houses throughout the country, but in particular in the South Florida and Louisana areas. The possible health threats associated with Chinese drywall include respiratory illness and other possible illnesses of which scientists are not yet aware due to the toxic nature of the drywall. It is important to know how to detect Chinese drywall in your home in order to avoid associated health risks.
If a home was constructed or if any new drywall was installed in an existing home between the years of 2004 and 2007, then there is a possibility that the home contains hazardous Chinese drywall. The drywall is alleged to release corrosive gases, and is the cause of a host of health problems. Here are a few tips to help determine if you have the defective hazardous Chinese drywall.
HOW TO CHECK FOR CHINESE DRYWALL
- Check for the smell of sulfur or rotten eggs, especially when it rains. Sulfur gasses are more potent when it is humid and they are more likely to be released during moist weather conditions. The odor is due to drywall supplies from China are being exposed to coal that contains high amounts of sulfur and put off a specific odor.
- Remove drywall and check for any stickers on the drywall that say "Knauf Plasterboard Tianjin (KPT). If there is a "Made in China," sticker, this could also be a version of the toxic Chinese drywall. This information can be found on the back of the drywall sheet. If you have an attic, you may be able to see the bottom of the drywall by removing the insulation from the ceiling and checking the bottom for this information.
- Inspect the coils on your indoor air conditioning unit. They will be blackened and corroded if they have been affected by Chinese drywall. You may notice other wiring is also corroded.
- Check your electrical outlets. Remove the outlet cover on your electrical boxes, and see if the copper wiring has turned black. This is another indication of a potential health hazard, if related the Chinese drywall.
- Hire a licensed contractor to remove the drywall from your home. In addition, hire an home inspector to be sure you have removed all possible drywall product.