House #43: Inspection/Appraisal

December 17, 2013 · 2 comments

The buyers for The Tear-Down House have completed their inspections and the inspection report was short and clean. There were a bunch of little items — paint touch-ups, windows painted shut, some caulking needed, some debris in the back yard, a light not working, etc — and only one major item.

The major item is actually a bit perplexing. There is a LOT of water in the crawl space and we can’t figure out where it’s coming from. We’ve had a couple water-proofing companies take a look, and they assure us it’s not coming through the foundation walls (grading is correct) and is not likely coming under the footers (drainage is good). As crazy as it seems, it appears the most likely explanation is that the water has been there since the foundation was poured back in June.

Right after the foundation was poured, there was a ridiculous amount of rain for about two weeks (I think there are some pictures of this earlier in the thread), and we just assumed the water would either drain out or be absorbed into the ground. Well, the soil under the house is mostly clay, so it’s quite possible that the water couldn’t be absorbed and just sat there for the past 6 months. Crazy that nobody noticed (or noticed and didn’t say anything), but right now, that seems like the best explanation. We had our waterproofing company come out, they dug a trench down the center of the crawl space, and ran a french drain through and under the footer at the back of the house. This should alleviate any water that might get into the crawl in the future.

While they were there, they also excavated both sides of the house, re-sprayed the foundation with waterproof material, and checked the foundation drain leading underground from the downspouts to the rain garden. So, I’m pretty confident the issue — whatever it was — is now solved.

We also had the appraiser come out to the property to do the appraisal. He implied that he didn’t believe we should have any issue with the appraisal and even said that he had recently appraised a smaller one at a higher value right across the street. So, it appears the appraisal shouldn’t be an issue.

At this point we’re just waiting for the loan to get through underwriting, and we’re hoping to close before the end of the month.

2 responses to “House #43: Inspection/Appraisal”

  1. Dennis says:

    J Scott,

    I commend you for always taking the high road on doing the best fixes on your rehabs (or new in this case). Many others would have used a MUCH larger bandaid, and hope the issue never arises in the future. The work you just had done probably set you back a significant amount of $$$$’s.

  2. J Scott says:

    Dennis –

    If you start doing a lot of houses, you’ll start to realize that you actually get a reputation with other professionals in the industry (agents, appraisers, inspectors, closing attorneys, etc). Getting a bad reputation can kill your business, but getting a good reputation often means having agents clamor to get their buyers into your properties. For that reason, we also strive to do the right thing and generate a great reputation. It’s helped us tremendously over the past several years, as we continue to work with the same agents (other others in the industry) over and over again.

    That said, we also have great contractors. In this case, our waterproofing company was happy to do all this work for a very reasonable price — they work hard to help us so that everyone benefits…

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