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  • Pre-Inspection Agreement

    The scope of this inspection is a limited, non-invasive, visual inspection of the home, in accordance with N.J.A.C. 13:40-15.16.  The inspector must follow these regulations, or will be subject to disciplinary actions set forth by the New Jersey Home Inspection Advisory Committee. The client, a party to the Home Inspection Contract (hereinafter “Client”) understands that the home inspection is not technically exhaustive and does not identify/assess concealed conditions or latent defects as outlined in N.J.A.C. 13:40-15.19.  This inspection does not warranty nor guarantee longevity and/or future operation/conditions of any of the items/systems found on the property.  The subsequent report is intended to be used as a source of information regarding conditions of the inspected property as they exist on the date of the inspection only, and is not intended to be used as a tool for negotiating the purchase price.  Check our website www.fortresshomeinspection.com for other information regarding limitations and to review the items to which the inspector will be inspecting.  Remember, conditions of the home/property you are buying and/or its contents can actually change as early as the day after your home inspection; your final walk through is your last chance to check things out.  Feel free to call us if necessary.

     

    The following text describes limitations, terms and conditions:

    1. Fuel Storage Tanks – Whether underground, above ground, or installed in basements or crawl spaces, fuel tanks are beyond the scope of this inspection.  If your perspective purchased property has a fuel storage tank, hire a contractor that specializes in this area to determine the condition of this item.  Details/information of any fuel conversions need to be verified/confirmed prior to closing.  Many fuel conversions require relining the interior of the chimney.  Obtain a chimney sweep to determine the conditions of the interior of the chimney.

    2. Wood Destroying Insects – If a wood destroying insect inspection is desired, discovery of wood destroying insects is limited to readily accessible/visible areas only.  Under no circumstances can the inspector dismantle/disassemble any parts, areas, components of the home/building, which includes but is not limited to; trim, wall coverings, floor coverings, siding, ceilings, including suspended ceilings of any type, tiled ceilings, or plaster ceilings, insulation, drywall, plaster walls, personal possessions, storage, equipment and furniture.  Assessing extent of damage from wood destroying insects is beyond the scope of this inspection.

    3. Radon Testing – Radon testing is always recommended, regardless of the date of any previous testing.  Since Radon levels are constantly fluctuating and regulations change over time, annual testing is advised to monitor levels.  If the property to be inspected is located at a second floor or higher, a Radon test may not be necessary.  You may wish to contact the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection at 1-800-648-0394 (from within NJ only) or visit www.radata.com for further information regarding Radon and Radon testing.  Test your home at least every year.  If your inspection included Radon testing, your payment only covers one (1) Radon test and one (1) attempt for canister retrieval.  All reasonable attempts will be made to retrieve the canister; however, retrieval will not exceed three (3) attempts.  If the situation arises where we cannot pickup the Radon canister due to circumstances beyond our control, and the canister is deemed “overexposed”, then an additional fee of $125.00 will be charged for another test if another test is desired.

    4. Soil Grading – Evaluation is limited to surface grading only and does not include geological conditions and/or movement, site stability, water table, curtain drains, swales or sink holes of any kind.  You may wish to contact the local municipality for information regarding the natural water table of this area.  You may wish to hire a geologists or soil engineer for soil sampling/testing or for further evaluation of the property.

    5. Water Seepage – Discovery of water seepage/damage is based on visual observations only and does not include concealed/inaccessible areas.  Determination of the extent of damage from water seepage, regardless of the source, is beyond the scope of this inspection.  Estimation of future water seepage/damage is beyond the scope of this inspection.

    6. Settlement Cracking – Settlement cracking is common in any structure, however, determination/estimation of future settlement cracking as a result of any structural movement and/or failure is beyond the scope of this inspection.  Structural cracking requires further evaluation by a licensed structural engineer or architect.  Finished/covered/obstructed areas may hide cracking which is inaccessible for observation/evaluation.

    7. Roof Evaluation – Not all roofs can be walked on for evaluation due to safety concerns and/or shingle damage may occur if certain roofs are walked on.  The inspector reserves the right to determine if conditions permit walking the roof for evaluation of the roof and/or shingles.  Binoculars may be used for evaluation as a substitute.  Multi layered roofs are generally more expensive to replace and can hide a multitude of defects that may be unobservable at the time of the inspection.  Multi-layered roofs also create additional stress/weight to the rafters, beyond the original design capabilities, which can result in cracked rafters and/or roof sheathing sags.  Since every square inch of the roof can not be checked, comments regarding the roof are based on an “overall view”.  Tiny cracks or holes in the roof can develop at any time during the life of the roof causing the roof to leak.  Periodic observation and maintenance is required for any roof.

    8. Exterior Siding – Older cementitious tile siding, historically, contained some degree of asbestos.  Only a qualified laboratory can confirm the presence or absence of asbestos.  Generally, residing the house does not mean you have to remove these tiles as most contractors reside directly over the cementitious tiles.  Obtain further information from your municipality regarding code compliance, requirements and permits.  Older stucco siding requires regular, routine observation, maintenance and/or repair.  Neglected areas can produce problematic conditions regarding water/moisture damage, mold/mildew and/or structural concerns.  If your house has Exterior Insulated Finished Systems (“EIFS”) siding, you should obtain a specialist for evaluation.

    9. Gutters & Leaders – Gutter/leader systems and/or roof drainage systems are not water tested for leakage or blockage.  Determining future water damage from gutters/leaders and/or ice damning is beyond the scope of this inspection.  Clogged gutters can cause water damage to neighboring components, cleaning gutters and leaders is recommended prior to occupancy as well as periodic cleaning after you take possession of the home.  Underground drainage systems and/or concealed/inaccessible/obstructed piping are beyond the scope of this inspection.

    10. Fire Ratings – Determining the fire rating of any item in the home is beyond the scope of this inspection.  If you have an attached garage, installing a fire rated metal entry door is advised, as well as installing a carbon monoxide detector.  Verify the municipal code requirements with the local municipality.

    11. Toxic Substances – Determining the presence of asbestos, lead paint, urea-formaldehyde insulation and/or other hazardous materials, including the chemical composition of pressure treated lumber, is beyond the scope of this inspection.  Any references made regarding these materials are based on visual observation only.  Confirmation of these substances can only be done by a qualified laboratory.  Lead paint was commonly used in homes built before 1978; obtain a qualified contractor for a lead paint inspection.

    12. Windows/Doors – Determining the efficiency of windows and doors and/or heat loss analysis from single pane windows or thermo pane windows, or other openings in walls, is beyond the scope of this inspection.  It is recommended that you properly seal all openings with the appropriate caulking method.  The overall ratings of windows/doors are based on the representative amount windows and doors that were accessible to operate.  Determining safety issues regarding shower/tub glass and glass skylights is beyond the scope of this inspection.

    13. Water Containment Items – Determining the waterproof ability, leakage or blockage, of shower pans, tubs or water containment items and/or future performance is beyond the scope of this inspection.  Periodic observation and/or water proofing is advised in all wet areas of the home.

    14. Limited Observations of Walls/Ceilings/Floors – Wall conditions beneath wallpaper, paneling, or wall coverings of any kind can not be determined.  Conditions above suspended ceilings, tiled, tongue and groove ceilings or tin ceilings can not be determined without some degree of disassembling; the inspector can not disassemble any portion/section/item of the home.  Conditions of floors beneath floor coverings of any kind can not be determined.  Check these areas at your final walk through.

    15. Low Voltage Systems – Accuracy, adequacy, operation or the calibration of any appliances, thermostats and/or equipment, including any low voltage systems is beyond the scope of this inspection.  Appliances may be checked for operation at the time of the inspection as a courtesy, however, there is no representation, expressed or implied as to the future operation of those appliances tested.

    16. Ancillary Systems – Including, but not limited to, solar, geo-thermal or any other non-conventional heating units, battery backup systems, or backup generators are not part of this inspection.  Obtain information from the current owner or manufacturer regarding operation and maintenance of these systems.  Estimation of life expectancies of any item/system is beyond the scope of this inspection

    17. Heating Systems – Heating systems are not dismantled to determine conditions of internal components.  This procedure can only be done by a qualified technician/contractor.  If pilot lights are off at the time of the inspection, the inspector can not light the pilot light and a full evaluation of that system can not be completed.  During the summer months, heating units can not be fully tested due to ambient temperatures.  Check this item at your final walk through or when weather permits.  Consult your attorney to include a contingency in your contract if the heating system cannot be fully tested.  Electronic air cleaners, humidifiers/dehumidifiers or any ancillary system are not part of the inspection.  Installing a carbon monoxide detector and smoke detectors is advised; check the local municipality regarding the placement of detectors.

    18. Air Conditioning Systems – Air conditioner pressure tests are not performed, nor is the unit dismantled to inspect internal components, only a qualified air conditioner contractor/technician can perform this kind of testing.  During cold weather months, air conditioners, whether installed wall units or central air conditioning systems can not be tested due to ambient temperatures.  Check this item at your final walk through or when weather permits.  Many attic units have limited access and may not be evaluated due to unsafe conditions, excessive storage or inadequate access.  Consult your attorney to include a contingency in your contract if the air conditioning system can not be tested.  Determining adequacy of air conditioning systems is beyond the scope of this inspection.

    19. Concealed Piping – Concealed piping can not be evaluated for integrity, leaks, corrosion or possible root intrusions.  It is recommended that all piping be cleaned out prior to usage.  Obtain a qualified contractor for this task.

    20. Water Supply/Quality – Water quality, purity, or testing for hazardous conditions, such as lead content or lead paint is not part of this inspection.  If a lead supply line is present, it is recommended that you obtain water testing.  Water testing is also advised if your property has a private well and/or a septic system.  If the property has a septic system, a septic open pit inspection is advised regardless of the age of the system.

    21. Septic Systems – If your property has an onsite sub surface waste disposal system, obtaining a separate, qualified septic system inspector and a septic system “open pit” inspection is advised prior to closing.

    22. Product Recalls/Defects or Similar Notices – Product recalls are not addressed due to the overwhelming number of recalled products in today’s market.  You may wish to visit the Consumer Product Safety Commissions website for specific information regarding the product in question.

    23. Obtain Licensed/Qualified Contractors – Any references for repair or replacement should be completed by a qualified, competent contractor.  It is your responsibility to obtain or arrange for qualified contractors to repair or replace items as needed.  Home owner repairs are not recommended.  Determining the adequacy of the repairs, alterations or renovations of any part of the home or items in the home is beyond the scope of this inspection.  Determining the extent of water damage, if any, is beyond the scope of this inspection.  Some degree of dismantling is required to determine extent of water damage.  Water damage can affect inaccessible items such as insulation, electrical components, piping, framing, sub-floors and wall cladding.

    24. Inaccessible/Concealed Areas – Areas that are concealed or inaccessible can not be evaluated.  Some inaccessible areas may have problematic issues that may be unseen at the date and time of the inspection, however, over time, may develop into more serious/obvious issues.  Be cognizant of these areas, you may wish to check these areas at your final walk through or sometime before closing.  Determination of extent of water/insect damage is beyond the scope of this inspection.

    25. Licensed Electrician – Any electrical issues should be repaired and/or verified by a licensed electrician prior to closing.  Older homes may have electrical systems that utilized aluminum branch wiring.  Aluminum branch wiring is considered a safety hazard due to potential corrosion to connections/devices as published by the Consumer Product Safety Commission.  Tin clad wiring resembles aluminum wiring and should be confirmed by a licensed electrician.  Tin clad wiring does not hold the same concerns as solid core aluminum wiring.

    26. Mold/Mildew – A mold/mildew test is recommended, regardless of the presence or absence of visible growth.  Mold growth can occur in concealed, inaccessible areas without the occupant’s knowledge.  Mold/mildew testing is beyond the scope of this inspection.

    27. Contaminants, Pollutants, Toxic Conditions – Pressure treated lumber, commonly used for decks and other outdoor projects, contains arsenic and other chemicals known to deter insect infestations and retard the natural decaying process of wood products.  These chemicals have been determined to be a health hazard, particularly to children.  Determining, discovering or searching for contaminants, pollutants or any other toxic conditions regarding detrimental health conditions is beyond the scope of this inspection.  Obtain qualified environmental testing laboratory/personnel for this task prior to closing.

    28. Dispute Resolution by Arbitration – Any dispute, controversy, interpretation and/or claims of any kind or nature, whatsoever, including, but not limited to , claims for breach of contract, any form of negligence, fraud or misrepresentation arising out of, from, or related to this contract or arising out of, from, or related to this inspection and inspection report shall be submitted to final and binding arbitration under the rules of the Expedited Arbitration of Home Inspection Disputes of Construction Arbitration Services Inc.  Client agrees that the arbitrator shall be familiar with the home inspection industry and have at least five (5) years experience as a home inspector.  The arbitrator shall conduct summary judgment motions and enforce full discovery rights as a court would, as provided in civil proceedings by legal code.  Client agrees to waive the right to trial.

    29. Severability – Client and inspector agree that in the event a Court of Competent Jurisdiction, determine or declare that any portion of this agreement is void, invalid or unenforceable, the remaining provisions and portions shall remain in full force and in effect.

    30. Revisit Charge – Some areas and/or components may be inaccessible during the initial home inspection due to furniture, storage/clutter or other obstructions.  If Client requests a revisit to the property, by the inspector, for any reason, a service fee of $125.00 shall apply for each visit, not including services rendered or reports generated.  If a written report is desired, Client agrees to an additional fee which will be determined depending upon the complexity of the report generated, in addition to the service fee.  The inspector and/or representative of Fortress Home Inspections (“Company”) do not work for free.  Your initial home inspection fee does not include multiple visits to the property by the home inspector.

    31. Statute of Limitations – The parties agree that no action may be brought to recover damages, monetary or otherwise, against the inspector or Company, its officers, agents, or employees more than three (3) months after the date of the original inspection.  Time is expressly of the essence herein.  Client must provide Company with the right to examine the subject of any claim within (10) days after discovery, and before any changes or remedial measures are taken.  If the above provisions are not met, Client waives the right to sue and the Company has no liability.  Client understands that this time period may be shorter than otherwise provided by law.  Client understands that the negotiated inspection price is payable at the end of the inspection.  Client also agrees to pay for any legal proceedings in connection with or arising from the home/building inspection and/or inspection report.

    32. Payment for Inspection – The fee for this inspection is due at the time of the inspection, however, if the Client does not attend the inspection, arrangement for payment shall be agreed upon prior to the inspection.  If the Client has not signed this agreement, acceptance and/or possession of the written report constitutes acceptance of these terms and conditions herein.

    33. Preliminary Generalist Visual Inspection – Client understands that the inspector is a generalist, knowledgeable in many areas, but does not hold himself as an expert in any particular field, unless otherwise disclosed.  A preliminary generalist inspection and report is an unbiased opinion, based upon the experience of the individual inspector.  The report identifies general conditions affecting the subject property.  If the inspector recommends consulting specialized contractors and/or experts for further evaluation and/or repairs, it is the Client’s responsibility, at the Client’s expense, to obtain further evaluations and/or repair with the contractors selected by the Client.  If the Client fails to consult the specialized experts/contractors as recommended by the inspector, the inspector shall be absolved of any liability and/or costs.  Client also agrees to read the resulting report upon receiving the report, and agrees to report any potential errors or omissions that may exist in the report that was disclosed during the inspection, to the Company.  The Client understands that only those deficiencies which are visible and accessible at the time of the inspection will be included in the report.  Some problems may not be visible/accessible during the actual home inspection, however, over time may manifest into more serious and obvious problems.  The inspector is limited to visible/accessible areas at the time of the home inspection.

    34. Acceptance of Agreement – This agreement shall be binding upon and inure to the benefit of the parties hereto, their heirs, successors, assigns, agents and representatives of any kind.  This agreement constitutes the entire integrated agreement between parties hereto pertaining to the subject matter hereof, and may be modified only by a written agreement signed by all parties hereto.  No oral agreement, understandings, or representations shall change, modify, or amend any part of this agreement.

    35. Acknowledgement – As evidence by his/her signature below, Client has read and understands the Terms and Conditions of this agreement and this agreement shall be binding upon  and inure to the benefit of the parties hereto, their heirs, successors, assigns, agents and representatives of any kind whatsoever.  This agreement constitutes the entire integrated agreement between the parties hereto pertaining to the subject matter hereof, and may be modified only by written agreement signed by all parties hereto.  No oral agreements, understandings, or representatives shall change, modify, or amend any part of this agreement.  As evidenced by my (Client) signature below, I (Client) warrant that I have read the preceding understand the preceding and agree to the preceding fully.  I also warrant that I (Client) have reviewed the preceding at least one (1) day after retaining an appointment with the Company.

    36. The Written Inspection Report – Typically, our report is ready for mailing via standard US Postal Service in 2-3 business days; however, this depends on the complexity of the report.  Remember, while we make every effort to maintain an accurate, quality report, rushing the report can increase the chance of errors or omissions.  If you need the report sooner, make sure to let us know at the time of the inspection so we can try to make adjustments to accommodate your request.  Although “emailing” the report is possible, we cannot guarantee accuracy due to potential transmission errors via electronic transfer.  The best thing to do is to wait for the actual written report.  Your attorney can extend the deadline further; obtain more information directly from your attorney.

    37. Photographs – Any photographs taken at the time of the inspection is the exclusive property of the Company and is not part of the home inspection report, although some photographs maybe included in the written report to clarify certain issues.  Inclusion of any photos in the written report shall be at the discretion of the Company only.

    38. Report is Not Transferable – The report is not transferable and is intended to describe conditions of the home or property as of the day of the inspection only.  Conditions of and/or performance of any systems/items of the home, including maintenance issues, subsequent to the day of the inspection, are not possible to determine.  Some damage to the home may incur during the actual moving out/in process.  Be sure to check areas prone to damage at your final walk through and be cognizant of these areas when moving in.  Your final walk through is the last time to check the home before closing.

    39. Not a Municipal Code Inspection – The inspector is not a municipal code official and the subsequent report does not represent a municipal code inspection.  You may wish to obtain a separate municipal code compliance inspection with your local municipality.  Any planned alterations to the structure should be reviewed by an architect and completed by a qualified contractor as well as obtaining all necessary permits.  Contract the local municipality for proper procedures.  You may wish to obtain a separate municipal code inspection.

     

    Conditions/Items beyond the scope of this inspection include but are not limited to; municipal code compliance, regulations, violations, prior building permit research, easements, rights of way, boundaries, condition of title, liens, occupancy designation and/or usage, compliance with any manufacturer’s specifications/instructions.  Obtaining or reviewing information from any third parties including, but not limited to, sellers, occupants, contractors, consultants, attorneys, agents or home owner associations, evaluating fire and/or fire resistive qualities/adequacies of any system/item, structures or component of the building/home is not the responsibility of the Company.  Evaluation of common areas or systems, structures or components thereof including, but not limited to, any items/conditions related to animals, rodents, insects, wood destroying insects or organisms, mold/mildew damage are not including in this inspection unless previously specified in writing by Client and/or any related home owners’ association .  Any form of engineering analysis or architectural analysis including, but not limited to, geological conditions or defects.  Unique and/or technically complex systems or devices such as heat exchangers, remote controls, motion and heat sensors, alarm systems, fire detection systems, air quality systems, radio or computer controlled items, automatic timer controls, elevators, dumbwaiters, satellite systems, automatic gates, etc.  Low voltage systems such as TV antennas, TV signal cables, telephone lines, intercoms, security systems, speaker wires, thermostats, etc.  Private water wells, septic systems, sewage or ejector pumps, water filtration/purification systems, etc.  Swimming pools, hot tubs, spas, waterfalls, ponds, fountains, saunas, steam systems, or other similar equipment and its components, building or property measurements, any type of septic systems, value appraisal, costs estimates for corrective repairs, electrical load measurements or calculations, testing of gas/water shut off valves, and testing for gas leaks.  Latent defects or estimates of life expectancies.  Detached ancillary buildings, except for parking structures or as agreed previous to the inspection for an additional cost.  Gas and electric appliances may be tested for operation, however, no warranty/guarantee is provided for any system/item in the building/home.  Systems, structures or components which are not permanently installed, Ghosts and/or supernatural or unexplained occurrences/events, recreational items, advisability of purchase, noise transmission, odors or determination of origin of odors or fumigation requirements, lawn sprinkler/irrigation systems, cosmetic finishes and conditions, landscaping and foliage, and heat loss analysis.

     

    • I (Client) understand and fully accept all of the provisions of this pre-inspection agreement and have read all of the pages contained in this pre-inspection agreement in its entirety.

    • I agree to allow a copy of the home inspection report to be sent to the following:

    Home Inspections, Radon Testing, Termite Inspections

    Raymond J Mooney,
    Senior Inspector

    # 24GI00099000 | MET # 12741

    Rockaway, NJ 07866

    (862) 432-3000

    ray@fortresshomeinspection.com

    www.fortresshomeinspection.com

    A Division of Four Moon Properties LLC


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  • Fortress Home Inspections

    Home Inspections, Radon Testing, Termite Inspections

    Raymond Mooney,
    Senior Inspector
    # 24GI00099000 | MET # 12741

    102 Hill St.
    Rockaway, NJ 07866

    (862) 432-3000
    ray@fortresshomeinspection.com
    www.fortresshomeinspection.com

    A Division of Four Moon Properties LLC

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