Home Inspection by Criterium-Bernhisel Engineers

Home Inspections

There was a time not all that long ago when the standard advice for consumers was:  “Buyer Beware.”  We’ve always considered “Buyer Be Prepared” a much better strategy, and a Criterium-Bernhisel Engineers home inspection is designed for precisely that purpose:  To prepare buyers for a home purchase by helping them learn as much as possible about the home they are planning to buy.  A thorough home inspection is the equivalent of a medical check-up for your home. It examines the overall health of the structure and the condition of key components and systems.

Criterium-Bernhisel Engineers home inspections are thorough and detailed.  We scrutinize homes inside and out to identify significant problems and to note necessary repairs in structural components and major systems.  We look specifically for:

  • Structural weakness and deterioration
  • Evidence of water damage
  • The condition of the roof and the foundation
  • Signs of insect damage
  • The condition of major systems – heating and cooling, plumbing and electrical
  • The adequacy of the ventilation
  • Life and safety issues: Does the home have working fire and smoke detectors? Are stairways, stair railings, decks and patios safe? Does the home have risks for very young occupants or very old ones?

This thorough evaluation is as essential for a new home as for an older one.  Just because a home is newly constructed doesn’t mean it was constructed properly, with appropriate attention to detail and in compliance with good construction practices.  Our licensed, Professional Engineers have inspected thousands of homes, new and old.  They know where to look and what to look for.  They recognize quality construction and they can identify construction shortcuts.

Criterium-Bernhisel Engineers home inspections are educational.  We focus on the information buyers need to make an informed decision and avoid post-purchase surprises.  We distinguish between minor problems of which buyers should be aware, and major ones that might affect their purchase decision or their budgeting plans.  Our goal is to educate, not to alarm.  We view the inspection as a ‘teachable moment” for buyers – probably the only opportunity most will have to explore their home top to bottom with an expert who can show them where important features (the electrical panel and the water shut-off valve, for example) are located, explain how things work, and answer their questions.  We encourage buyers to ask questions, either during the inspection or after.   The written inspection report we produce includes a detailed description of our home inspection findings and a maintenance plan outlining maintenance requirements for the home, estimating the life expectancy of major components, and projecting major repairs and upgrades buyers should anticipate during the first 5 – 10 years of ownership.

Criterium-Bernhisel Engineers home inspections are conducted by licensed, Professional Engineers.  This is an important point. Many home inspectors are neither licensed nor insured.   Many states do not license home inspectors.  Inspectors typically face no consequences for deficient work and have no insurance to cover damages resulting from errors they make. Criterium-Bernhisel’s licensed, Professional Engineers are not only highly experienced, educated and well-trained, they are accountable for their work, they are fully insured, and they subscribe to the highest professional and ethical standards.  They also know what they are doing.  Criterium-Bernhisel engineers are building experts.

If you are buying a home, contact Criterium-Bernhisel Engineers for the comprehensive, reliable, professional pre-purchase home inspection you need.