All around the region, new neighborhoods are being built and families are moving into new construction homes. Local builders are working on record numbers of new homes and selling them nearly as fast as they are completed. Owning a brand new home has its benefits – new appliances and mechanical systems, fresh finishes and no DIY surprises lurking from past owners. However, new homes aren’t perfect and issues can crop up in the first year of home ownership.

For this reason, most builders offer a new home warranty. With a minimum of one year of coverage, but sometimes more, homeowners are wise to leverage the value of their warranty with a home inspection. It’s easy to spot drywall cracks or malfunctioning appliances, but it’s harder to know if there are problems lurking in the attic, under the house or within the complex systems throughout the home.

Boggs Home Inspections
Inspector Bill Ryan checks an exterior hose bib during the course of a home warranty inspection. ©SouthSoundTalk

This is where a home inspection comes into play. Boggs Inspection Service has been helping Pierce County homeowners get an in-depth look at their homes for over 13 years. No matter if your home is brand new or 100 years old, owner Dwayne Boggs recommends getting a home inspection. For new construction, buyers often opt for a warranty inspection, or an “11-month New Home Inspection” in lieu of an inspection at the time of sale. Finding issues after nearly a year of living helps buyers ensure nothing big is overlooked.

Home warranties give buyers peace of mind that, should something need repair in the first year, the builder will address it at their cost. The four busy inspectors at Boggs Inspection Service generally log three to five warranty inspections per month, finding any hidden issues before the warranty expires.

Creating a “punch list” of small things seen throughout the first year – sheetrock nail pops, drywall cracks, trim defects, scratches – is a smart idea for homeowners. But what about things unseen? Things lurking in the attic or the crawl space? Things you might not know need repair?

Pierce County Home Inspection
A home inspection, whether at time of sale or at the warranty expiration, includes a full inspection of all the nooks and crannies of your home. ©SouthSoundTalk

“We have found homes missing insulation in the attic or crawl space and homeowners never knew,” shares Boggs. A high heating bill might cause concern, but typically isn’t connected to missing insulation by owners of a brand new home. If found before the warranty expires, these larger repairs land on the builder’s tab, not yours.

Small things are also noted during the warranty inspection. Boggs inspectors find incorrectly installed outlets or problems with GFCI outlets, broken roof trusses, small exterior openings where moisture accesses the house and improper drainage around the house. These small issues, however, can cause large issues over time. Poor drainage can lead to foundation damage and structural problems. Small exterior leaks can lead to wood rot, mold or pest infestations. Improperly wired outlets are a fire hazard.

A home warranty won’t cover everything, but major structural defects and mechanical, system and workmanship issues typically are covered. The trick is to discover them prior to the expiration date. A warranty inspection allows you to leverage the value of your home warranty with an unbiased, third-party report you can simply hand over to your builder.

Local homebuilder Rob Rice Homes works regularly with Boggs Inspection Services on both new home and warranty inspections. Rob Rice Homes offers a 2-10 Home Buyer’s Warranty (2-10 HBW) that exceeds industry standards. The warranty offers “risk reduction, increases the resale value of the home, and often saves the homebuyer money after closing when the unexpected and unforeseen happens,” shares owner Rob Rice.

Boggs Inspection Services
Cosmetic issues are examples of things homeowners can put on their “punch-list” for their builder to address before their warranty expires. Photo courtesy: Boggs Inspection Services

The 2-10 HBW is a “limited warranty coverage from frame to foundation and interior systems to exterior finish,” says Rice. At the 11-month mark, Rob Rice Homes will address cosmetic issues, improperly installed items or finish carpentry defects.

However, the “10” in the 2-10 HBW refers to 10 years of structural defect coverage for load-bearing and the “2” indicates two-year coverage against defects in systems such as wiring, plumbing, heating and cooling. These extended warranties make a 23-month home inspection something to consider if you own a Rob Rice Home.

When inspecting a Rob Rice Home, Boggs inspectors report a high level of workmanship, something not always seen with larger, national builders. However, Rice himself is quick to point out that even in the best built home, settling or shrinkage will occur. “Drywall cracks and concrete cracks are common issues in that first year,” he says. With numerous sub-contractors on site during construction, somethings things do get missed.

Dwayne Boggs
Dwayne Boggs has been inspecting homes throughout Pierce County for over 13 years and has seen many homeowners save a bundle through a warranty inspection. ©SouthSoundTalk

“Even the best subs and builders can miss something,” explains Boggs. “It’s human error and we just try and help homeowners find things that were missed with a trained set of eyes on all the nooks and crannies of the home.”

Are you the proud owner of a new construction home? Get the most out of your warranty with a home inspection from Boggs Inspection Services. Their expertise will ensure your biggest investment, your home, won’t empty your wallet with repairs down the road.

“We enjoy working with Boggs Inspection Services and have a successful long-standing partnership with them,” says Rice. “When new home buyers ask us about the value in getting a home inspection, we always recommend they do so.”

To schedule a new home inspection, a warranty inspection or a general building inspection contact Boggs Inspection Services at 360-480-9602 or visit Boggs online to learn more.

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