Ohio Lake Home Inspection: 5 Key Items to Inspect
In every real estate transaction you take part of your agent should always encourage you to get inspections on any home that you are purchasing. It can never be stressed enough that homes can and will have things wrong with them and that you should always be safe and get an inspection done to know what kind of repairs or improvements the home needs that you plan on buying. When it comes to buying an Ohio Lake House you should still get an inspection, however, you should make sure to get an inspector who has done an Ohio Lake Home inspection before because there are a few key issues they should look for that may not be as common with regular residential homes.
The first thing that we should mention is Radon. Radon does happen to be a regularly inspected item for regular residential homes, but it’s especially important to check at the Ohio Lake House you plan on purchasing for a few essential reasons. Radon is an invisible and odorless gas that emanates from the soil and causes certain health problems and in our experience it is typically found more commonly and in higher readings in homes around Ohio Lakes than in other areas. Now there are some interesting geological explanations that I won’t get into but combine them with this fact: that most private lakes in Ohio were developed in the 70’s (give or take a decade) meaning you have a lot of older homes that were built before Radon was considered as much of a problem as it is today. Combine those two facts together: older homes and geology and you have yourself a higher chance of having Radon in your Ohio Lake House. Make sure to have your inspector do a standard Radon reading on the home before you buy.
This specific item is unique to buying an Ohio Lake Home and it can be an expensive and challenging item to replace or repair. It is vital to owning a lake house as it prevents erosion of your shoreline into the lake and therefore it is important to have a qualified professional perform an Ohio lake Home inspection to make sure they can properly evaluate the current seawall. Seawalls can be made of several different materials including wood, concrete, stone etc and each material has a different life expectancy and a different cost to repair or replace, both of which your inspector should be able to tell you about the specific seawall at that individual property.
3. Boat Lifts
Another unique item to owning an Ohio Lake House is a boat lift. Now there are several different types of boat lifts all with various parts to inspect. Some homes will have a permanent boat lift with a roof over it and an electric lift to pull the boat out of the water. Others will only be a temporary lift that operates with a mechanical lever you have to use in order to pull your boat out. Similar to seawalls boat lifts will all have different costs of repairs and replacement depending on the type, not to mention these often mean there is electrical down by the shoreline to operate the lift. You want to make sure you have your inspector check the functionality of the lift itself as well as all the electric down by the dock for safety.
Now a lot of residential homes will have some decking such as a small balcony, but a lake house will often have several stories of expensive decking which should be built with certain safety measures in place. Not to mention that often times an Ohio Lake Home will have decks made from different materials other than lumber such as composite boards or even aluminum. You will want to make sure your inspector does a thorough job inspecting all the decking to give you an idea of it’s life expectancy and maintenance, as well as checking the decking support structure for safety.
5. Well and Septic
Most residential homes are on city water and sewer but there are a lot of lakes in Ohio that are off the beaten path and are unable to be hooked up to city water and sewer. This means that a lot of Ohio Lake Homes will have to have a private well and a private septic. Both items can be very expensive to replace and should be maintained on a regular basis. When performing an Ohio Lake Home inspection on a well and septic both the mechanical functions as well as the water quality of the well. The septic should be especially inspected with care because since the home is so close to the lake a problem with your septic could be a problem for the entire lake community. Make sure to talk to your lakefront specialist as well as your inspector about the different maintenance and testing that should be done on wells and septic systems throughout the time you own the house.
As is the case with buying a regular residential home there are several dozen more items to check on an inspection but buying an Ohio Lake House be sure to get a qualified inspector who can do an Ohio lake Home inspection to check these additional items that residential homes may not have on them. Check with your lakefront consultant on which inspectors to use when buying your dream lake home so you can rest easy at night knowing everything was inspected to the utmost capacity. It’s better to be safe than sorry.
Written by Justin Shelton Lakefront Consultant -The Lake Team