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  1. #1
    Jason Schmidt's Avatar
    Jason Schmidt Guest

    Default condo inspection

    Good morning,

    I just got a call today about 3 condo's to inspect. Question is what to look for in a condo. I have never done a condo before. Is everything the same as a home inspection. I mean as electrical panels, a/c and heating. Does a condo have access to the attic. New to me. kinda nervous. sorry about that. i should of post this some where else.

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    Last edited by Jason Schmidt; 12-05-2008 at 08:39 AM. Reason: wrong area to post
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Washington State
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    579

    Default Re: condo inspection

    Jason, relax most condo inspections are much easier than the typical home inspection. First find out what type of condos you are inspecting such as, does each unit have a crawlspace and it's own roof. Or are they multi story units that do not have a crawlspace or roof directly over them. Find out if the exteriors and roofs are part of the condo associations responsibility, if so exteriors and roofs are commonly excluded from condo inspections. Be aware that if the units have crawlspaces that you inspect they may be combined with other units. In this case you only inspect the area below the unit you are inspecting, however if you were to notice a plumbing leak, standing water, termites, etc. in the adjoining units crawlspace you would want mention it in the report as it could eventually affect the unit that your inspecting.

    Most likely you will want to put in some type of condo disclaimer in the beginning of the report. Here is an example, it is not exactly what I use but it gives you an idea of what to say.

    This condominium inspection is a partial inspection and is performed on only those components that the buyer or homeowner is responsible for. It does not include the exterior components of the property, crawlspace or attic and all of the components contained therein as this is usually owned by the association and is not owned by the buyer or home owner. It is up to the buyer to determine if any of these excluded areas are in fact the buyers responsibility and if so, to notify the inspector so these areas will be inspected. Please note a different charge will apply should the buyer want these areas inspected. It also is not possible in some cases to inspect attic areas where a duplex unit exist and the buyer is purchasing the lower unit, or vice versa. Our company makes no representation as to the condition of these areas that were not inspected.


  3. #3
    Darrel Hood's Avatar
    Darrel Hood Guest

    Default Re: condo inspection

    Jason,
    In general, they are shorter inspections than normal, mainly because they are usually smaller than a normal home, have fewer exterior features, etc. I limit the inspection to the boundaries of the condo, but I inspect everything within those boundaries and let the other folks sort out who is responsible for what.

    The reason I use this approach is to give the client all available information for the purchasing decisions. If the inside of the condo is perfect, but the outside is junk, the buyer may make choices based on the knowledge that the association is not doing a good job.

    In two story condos, the norm in our area, the only difference that quickly comes to mind from a SF inspection is fire separation between the units.

    Darrel Hood
    DILIGENT PROPERTY SERVICES


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Philadelphia PA
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    3,177

    Default Re: condo inspection

    The electric service equipment is often in a utility room, such as in the basement. So the panel in the condo usually must have the neutrals and grounds separated and the neutrals floating from the panel box. Often you can't even see the grounds - they have been routed separately to a central grounding electrode system.


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Healdsburg, CA
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    1,741

    Default Re: condo inspection

    Jason
    This is my old condo preliminary inspection report statement and goes back to at least 1998 so you may want to modify any or all of it shoule you choose to use it. Be careful to stick to only the interior of the condo itself (paint to paint) and not "common areas" as you can and will be held legally responsible for everything you state in your inspection report. Remember, no good deed goes unpunished! Good luck.

    Home Owners Association:
    The residential dwelling unit was part of a complex that is managed, and maintained by a "Home Owners Association." My inspection will be limited to visual evaluation of the systems, and components that are located within the dwelling unit inspected. The current condition of "Common Elements" such as, but not limited to; stairs, landings, porches, hallways, walks, balconies, decks, patios, pools, spas, recreational areas/equipment, elevators, utility metering, parking stalls/ports, building site conditions, structural stability, firewall separations, drainage systems, and all common areas on the property is not considered to be part of this inspection report. Any verbal commentary made regarding any of the above areas, which are not included in this report, have been made as a courtesy only and should be addressed to the “Home Owner’s Association” and/or their official representative.
    It is recommended that the Home Owner’s Association’s “Proforma Operating Budget” including a Reserve Study as required by California Civil Code section 1365 & 1365.5 and the Department of Real Estate be carefully reviewed. The reserve study should help provide an awareness of the anticipated remaining life expectancies of the major components and systems. The budget should also include a statement of present funds, and a funding strategy to cover future major repair/replacement.
    It is also recommended that the current unit owner (seller) and the "Home Owners Association" be consulted regarding known past and current defects and disclose all corrective work performed including any past or pending legal litigation.
    My clients are also encouraged to thoroughly review the "C.C.& Rs" and "Reserve Study" for disclosure of pertinent facts effecting the current condition and market value of the residential unit inspected including the complex's common elements and areas.


    Jerry McCarthy
    Building Code/ Construction Consultant

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Philadelphia PA
    Posts
    3,177

    Default Re: condo inspection

    I've done a few condos where I had to go up on the roof of the building (flat roofs accessible from built-in roof hatches with ladders) to identify and examine the exterior AC units.


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