As a homeowner, you may have heard of something called a four-point home inspection. This type of inspection is often requested when it comes to buying and selling older homes. Many insurance companies may also require a four-point inspection before renewing home insurance.
What is a Four-Point Home Inspection?
A four-point home inspection is an examination of the four main areas in a home where faults occur most often, resulting in insurance claims. This inspection identifies existing or potential problems to current homeowners, prospective buyers, and insurance companies.
The four areas that are inspected include the HVAC system, plumbing, electrical wiring, and roofing. Because of this, the inspection is quicker than a standard home inspection and is usually completed within an hour.
What the Inspection Covers:
Plumbing: An inspector will check the type of pipes present in a house. Some older water pipes are made of materials (typically polybutylene) that have a higher chance of bursting. Insurance companies are less likely to provide coverage to a home with these types of pipes.
Roofing: Many insurers do not cover aging roofs that are visibly worn and older than 30 – 40 years. An inspector will also check the type of materials used since the acceptable age varies with different materials. For example, metals roofs older than 40 years are generally not insured in comparison to shingle roofs which are usually not insured if they are older than 20 years.
HVAC System: The age and condition of any heating and air conditioning systems are checked. Any water leaks or damages to the actual units are recorded. Since the HVAC system is necessary to heat and cool your home, the insurance company wants to make sure it’s in good working order.
Electrical Wiring: As with plumbing, the type of materials used in electrical wiring is important to insurers. This is because certain types of wiring, such as aluminum and copper, are more likely to cause house fires. These materials are commonly found in older homes’ electrical systems. Circuits and panels are also checked for any faults or damages.
Why is a Four-Point Home Inspection Necessary?
Insurance companies need to know the condition of the major systems in a house before providing coverage or renewing existing insurance policies. This type of inspection is usually more common in coastal areas because of extreme weather conditions like hurricanes that can result in severe damage, destruction of homes, or even serious injuries to you and your family.
A four-point home inspection is equally beneficial to you as a potential buyer because it will give you a clear overview of the condition of a home. Finding out about any serious issues beforehand will help you to decide whether a not the house is a good investment.