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What is a 4-Point Home Inspection?

Home inspection

A well-rounded home inspector needs more than one kind of inspection in his skill set.

You might hear the term “4-point inspection” used when talking about vehicles, but it applies to real estate, too. In a house, a 4-point inspection is a quick assessment of the property. It’s often used when an in-depth inspection isn’t necessary or might be considered to much paperwork to deal with for the job at hand.

You might not have a lot of 4-point inspections cross your desk, but if the need arises you’ll want to know what to look out for.

Who Needs a 4-Point Inspection?

Generally speaking, the only entities who ask for a 4-point inspection are insurance companies. You might get a request now and again for other purposes, but the most common is insurance. If a home owner needs a new policy or wants to see whether she can get a better insurance rate, this type of inspection gives the potential insurer a better idea of the condition of the property that the policy will cover. They’re also common when insuring older property.

Home inspection

An insurance underwriter’s job is challenging enough without adding unnecessary paperwork on top.

Why Skip a Full Inspection?

Although a 4-point inspection bears little resemblance to a full inspection – it only covers four areas – it still aligns with a full inspection on those points. But where a lender and a buyer want to know exactly what they’re getting into with the funding or purchase of a house, an insurer doesn’t want or need all of that paperwork. A 4-point inspection is concise and doesn’t overload the insurer with more than he needs to deal with.

What the Inspection Covers

In most cases, this type of mini inspection covers four basic areas of the most interest: Heating, ventilation and air conditioning of HVAC, Electrical wiring and its components, plumbing and its components, and the roof. Any of these elements could be a potential source of a home owner’s insurance claim. If they’re in good condition, the insurer can feel more confident about issuing a policy.

Home inspection

Four-point inspections make you a more versatile inspector with more services to offer.

Additional Information

Like a full home inspection, a 4-point inspection asks that you inspect each element and report on its condition, particularly noting defects as you find them. The insurance company may have its own inspection form that you’ll be required to use, or they might explain their needs and expect you to devise your own report based on them. You’ll likely be expected to take at least two photos, one of the front and one of the rear of the property, but you might also be asked for images of the elements that you inspect.

A 4-point home inspection probably won’t make up the bulk of any home inspector’s workload. But by learning what’s expected and why these inspections are important, you’ll add another layer to the services that you can offer to potential customers. And that helps you build your business.

The 4-point home inspection is just one of numerous topics that you’ll learn about when you take ICA School’s home inspector training course. Our program is designed to allow you the freedom to study and advance at your own pace, which means you don’t have to quit your current job to train for a new career.

To find out more about what ICA School is really like, get a free demo. Our course is ranked among the best in the country, and it fulfills inspector licensing education requirements from coast to coast.

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