Thursday, March 21, 2013

A Seller's Market

For the first time in five years, the Kansas City housing market is being called a "Seller's Market" for existing homes, based on the January and February 2013 sales and inventory numbers. If you're selling your home, that's great news. But, how do you make your property stand out from all of the rest and make it more attractive to potential buyers?

A great sales tool is to have your home inspected BEFORE you put it on the market. That gives your prospective buyers the peace of mind that comes from knowing the condition of your home at the time of the inspection. It may save them money since they won't need to have the property inspected themselves. It makes your disclosure form very complete and detailed. And, it may be the difference that helps them choose your house instead of the others they've looked at.

Further, the April issue of Money magazine talks about how, in today's economy, many home buyers don't have as much savings left after their down payment to pay for improvements, and suggests that sellers smooth out their home's rough patches before listing the property. The magazine advises, "Repair that leaky roof and address other obvious structural problems, or you'll have to subtract the cost of doing so from your price." So, you may be saving yourself money in the long run by being proactive now.

Give yourself a competitive advantage in this Seller's Market. And avoid getting any surprises when your prospective buyers have the property inspected. Have Complete Home Inspection do a Kansas City home inspection on your property BEFORE you list it.

Whole house inspections, condo inspections, radon testing, mold testing, and more, we do it all for you. Call or E-mail today to schedule your Complete Home Inspection, 913-268-0222,

Saturday, March 9, 2013

The Drought and Radon Gas

Yes, the drought continues to plague us here in the Midwest. Now, deadly radon gas is finding new ways to get into your home. You can't smell it, you can't see it, but for about three out every five homes tested in our area, it's there and at dangerous levels. The Kansas Department of Health and Environment now recommends that you test your home's radon gas level every two years. And it's particularly important to do when you're buying a new property.

Radon is a naturally existing radioactive gas found underground. Due to the extended drought we've experienced, the ground has been moving, shrinking, and cracking around and under your home's foundation. That opens up new pathways for radon gas to escape the soil. And, the movement of the earth can cause new cracks to form in your foundation, which opens up new pathways for radon to then get into your home.

Keep in mind that since things have changed during the drought, "we had it tested a few years ago and it was fine" just doesn't apply anymore. In Kansas, your home must be tested by a certified radon tester. Missouri has no certification program as of yet, but it simply makes sense to have a trained professional handle your test for you.

I'm a Kansas certified radon tester and have been certified by the NRPP (National Radon Proficiency Program) for years. Complete Home Inspection uses a continuous radon monitor that takes samples over a period of two full days. The test unit is placed in the lowest livable level of the house. Windows are kept closed throughout the time of the test.  The test results are then averaged into an overall number for your final report. If the radon level is higher than 4.0piC/l, then it should be fixed, or "mitigated". Inexpensive do-it-yourself test kits are not what you want to rely on when it comes to your family's health and well-being. Instead, rely on the knowledge and competence of a certified radon tester.

Whole house inspections, condo inspections, radon testing, mold testing, and more, we do it all for you. Call or E-mail today to schedule your Complete Home Inspection, 913-268-0222,

Monday, March 4, 2013

The Drought and the Big Meltdown

With about two feet of snow melting around you this week, here are some things to check on  in order to protect your house from water seepage. Even though 24 inches of snow may melt down to only about two inches of water, last summer's drought may have caused some problems for your foundation - problems that will start showing up now.

First, make certain that your downspouts are clear and flowing well. And, if a downspout is usually connected to an extension of some sort, make certain that is connected now. You want to keep the snow melt water flowing away from the foundation of your home.

Next, make certain that water does not pool up behind a wall of snow that melts at a slower rate. If you shoveled snow into a pile as you cleared a walkway, for example, that pile might now be trapping water between it and the foundation. Since the drought caused dirt to compact and often shrink away from foundations, there may now be a gap between the foundation and the fill dirt surrounding it. Water loves to find gaps like that, so do your best to keep it away from your foundation.

Finally, check your basement wall for signs of water. The drought caused many foundations to shift as the ground receded and moved last summer. And that shifting may have caused new cracks in your basement wall to form and may have worsened existing cracks. If you find signs of water entering your home, make a mental note to do something about it in case we get our usual spring rains in Kansas City. Make a note to perhaps seal cracks that you find are leaking. And definitely make a note to change or improve your "yard slope", as they call it, to keep water flowing away from your foundation and out into the yard for drainage.

Whole house inspections, condo inspections, radon testing, mold testing, and more, we do it all for you. Call or E-mail today to schedule your Complete Home Inspection, 913-268-0222,