The purpose of this document is to establish a minimum standard (Standard) for home inspections
performed by home inspectors who subscribe to this Standard. Home inspections performed using this
Standard are intended to provide the client with information about the condition of inspected systems and
components at the time of the home inspection. The inspector shall inspect readily accessible, visually
observable, installed systems and components listed in this Standard, provide the client with a written
report, using a format and medium selected by the inspector and adhere to the ASHI® Code of Ethics for
the Home Inspection Profession.
The inspector shall inspect structural components including the foundation and framing, describe the
methods used to inspect under-floor crawlspaces and attics, the foundation, the floor structure, the wall
structure, the ceiling structure and the roof structure.
The inspector is however NOT required to provide engineering or architectural services or analysis, offer
an opinion about the adequacy of structural systems and components, enter under-floor crawlspace areas
that have less than 24 inches of vertical clearance between components and the ground or that have an
access opening smaller than 16 inches by 24 inches, or traverse attic load-bearing components that are
concealed by insulation or by other materials.
The inspector shall inspect the wall coverings, flashing, and trim, exterior doors, attached and adjacent
decks, balconies, stoops, steps, porches, and their associated railings, eaves, soffits, and fascias where
accessible from the ground level, vegetation, grading, surface drainage, and retaining walls that are likely
to adversely affect the building, adjacent and entryway walkways, patios, and driveways, describe wall
The inspector is NOT required to inspect screening, shutters, awnings, and similar seasonal accessories,
fences, boundary walls, and similar structure, geological and soil conditions, recreational facilities,
outbuildings other than garages and carports, seawalls, break-walls, and docks, and erosion control and
earth stabilization measures.
The inspector shall inspect roofing materials, roof drainage systems, flashing, skylights, chimneys, and
roof penetrations. Describe roofing materials, and the methods used to inspect the roofing.
The inspector is NOT required to inspect antennas, interiors of vent systems, flues, and chimneys that are
not readily accessible, and other installed accessories.
The inspector shall inspect interior water supply and distribution systems including fixtures and faucets,
interior drain, waste, and vent systems including fixtures, water heating equipment and hot water supply
systems, vent systems, flues, and chimneys, fuel storage and fuel distribution systems, sewage ejectors,
sump pumps, and related piping. Describe interior water supply, drain, waste, and vent piping materials,
water heating equipment including energy source(s), and location of main water and fuel shut-off valves.
The inspector is NOT required to inspect clothes washing machine connections, interiors of vent systems,
flues, and chimneys that are not readily accessible, wells, well pumps, and water storage related
equipment, water conditioning systems, solar, geothermal, and other renewable energy water heating
systems, manual and automatic fire extinguishing and sprinkler systems and landscape irrigation systems,
septic and other sewage disposal systems. The Inspector shall NOT determine whether water supply and
sewage disposal are public or private, water quality the adequacy of combustion air components, and the
inspector shall NOT measure water supply flow and pressure, and well water quantity, or fill shower pans
and fixtures to test for leaks.
The inspector shall inspect service drop, service entrance conductors, cables, and raceways, service
equipment and main disconnects, service grounding, interior components of service panels and subpanels,
conductors, overcurrent protection devices, a representative number of installed lighting fixtures,
switches, and receptacles, and ground fault circuit interrupters and arc fault circuit interrupters. The
inspector shall describe amperage rating of the service, location of main disconnect(s) and subpanels,
presence or absence of smoke alarms and carbon monoxide alarms, and the predominant branch circuit
The inspector is NOT required to inspect remote control devices, or test smoke and carbon monoxide
alarms, security systems, and other signaling and warning devices, low voltage wiring systems and
components, ancillary wiring systems and components not a part of the primary electrical power
distribution system, or solar, geothermal, wind, and other renewable energy systems. The inspector shall
NOT measure amperage, voltage, and impedance, or determine the age and type of smoke alarms and
carbon monoxide alarms.
The inspector shall open readily openable access panels. The inspector shall also inspect installed heating
equipment, vent systems, flues, and chimneys, and distribution systems. The inspector shall describe
energy source(s), heating systems.
The inspector is NOT required to inspect interiors of vent systems, flues, and chimneys that are not
readily accessible, heat exchangers, humidifiers and dehumidifiers, electric air cleaning and sanitizing
devices, heating systems using ground-source, water-source, solar, and renewable energy technologies,
and heat-recovery and similar whole-house mechanical ventilation systems. The inspector shall NOT be
require to determine heat supply adequacy and distribution balance, or the adequacy of combustion air
The inspector shall open readily openable access panels, inspect central and permanently installed cooling
equipment, distribution systems, describe energy source(s), cooling systems.
The inspector is NOT required to inspect electric air cleaning and sanitizing devices, or determine cooling
supply adequacy and distribution balance, or inspect cooling units that are not permanently installed or
that are installed in windows, or to inspect cooling systems using ground-source, water-source, solar, and
renewable energy technologies.
The inspector shall inspect walls, ceilings, and floors, steps, stairways, and railings, countertops and a
representative number of installed cabinets, a representative number of doors and windows, garage
vehicle doors and garage vehicle door operators, and installed ovens, ranges, surface cooking appliances,
microwave ovens, dishwashing machines, and food waste grinders by using normal operating controls to
activate the primary function.
The inspector is NOT required to inspect paint, wallpaper, and other finish treatments, floor coverings,
window treatments, coatings on and the hermetic seals between panes of window glass, central vacuum
systems, recreational facilities, installed and free-standing kitchen and laundry appliances, appliance
thermostats including their calibration, adequacy of heating elements, self-cleaning oven cycles,
indicator lights, door seals, timers, clocks, timed features, and other specialized features of the appliance,
or operate, or confirm the operation of every control and feature of an inspected appliance.
INSULATION AND VENTILATION
The inspector shall inspect insulation and vapor retarders in unfinished spaces, ventilation of attics and
foundation areas, kitchen, bathroom, laundry, and similar exhaust systems, and clothes dryer exhaust
systems. Describe insulation and vapor retarders in unfinished spaces, and absence of insulation in
unfinished spaces at conditioned surfaces.
The inspector is NOT required to disturb insulation.
FIREPLACES AND FUEL-BURNING APPLIANCES
The inspector shall inspect fuel-burning fireplaces, stoves, and fireplace inserts, fuel-burning accessories
installed in fireplaces and chimneys and vent systems.
The inspector is NOT required to inspect interiors of vent systems, flues, and chimneys that are not
readily accessible, fire screens and doors, seals and gaskets, or automatic fuel feed devices, mantles and
fireplace surrounds, combustion air components and to determine their adequacy, heat distribution assists
(gravity fed and fan assisted), fuel-burning fireplaces and appliances located outside the inspected
structures. Inspector shall NOT be required to determine draft characteristics, or move fireplace inserts
and stoves or firebox contents.
GENERAL LIMITATIONS AND EXCLUSIONS.
The inspector is NOT required to perform actions, or to make determinations, or to make
recommendations not specifically stated in this Standard, inspections performed using this Standard are
not technically exhaustive, are not required to identify and to report concealed conditions, latent defects,
consequential damages, and, cosmetic imperfections that do not significantly affect a component’s
performance of its intended function. This Standard applies to buildings with four or fewer dwelling units
and their attached and detached garages and carports. This Standard shall not limit or prevent the
inspector from meeting state statutes which license professional home inspection and home inspectors.
Redundancy in the description of the requirements, limitations, and exclusions regarding the scope of the
home inspection is provided for emphasis only.
The inspector is NOT required to determine the condition of systems and components that are not readily
accessible, the remaining life expectancy of systems and components, the strength, adequacy,
effectiveness, and efficiency of systems and components, the causes of conditions and deficiencies,
methods, materials, and costs of corrections, future conditions including but not limited to failure of
systems and components, the suitability of the property for specialized use, compliance of systems and
components with past and present requirements and guidelines (codes, regulations, laws, ordinances,
specifications, installation and maintenance instructions, use and care guides, etc.), the market value of
the property and its marketability, the advisability of purchasing the property, the presence of plants,
animals, and other life forms and substances that may be hazardous or harmful to humans including, but
not limited to, wood destroying organisms, molds and mold-like substances, the presence of
environmental hazards including, but not limited to, allergens, toxins, carcinogens, electromagnetic
radiation, noise, radioactive substances, and contaminants in building materials, soil, water, and air, the
effectiveness of systems installed and methods used to control or remove suspected hazardous plants,
animals, and environmental hazards, operating costs of systems and components, acoustical properties of
systems and components, soil conditions relating to geotechnical or hydrologic specialties, and whether
items, materials, conditions and components are subject to recall, controversy, litigation, product
liability, and other adverse claims and conditions.
The inspector is NOT required to offer or to perform acts or services contrary to law or to government
regulations, or to perform architectural, engineering, contracting, or surveying services or to confirm or to
evaluate such services performed by others, or to perform trades or professional services other than home
inspection, and warranties or guarantees.
The inspector is NOT required to operate systems and components that are shut down or otherwise
inoperable, systems and components that do not respond to normal operating controls, shut-off valves and
manual stop valves, and automatic safety controls.
The inspector is NOT required to enter areas that will, in the professional judgment of the inspector,
likely be dangerous to the inspector or to other persons, or to damage the property or its systems and
components, or under-floor crawlspaces and attics that are not readily accessible.
The inspector is NOT required to inspect underground items including, but not limited to, underground
storage tanks and other underground indications of their presence, whether abandoned or active, items
that are not installed, installed decorative items, detached structures other than garages and carports,
common elements and common areas in multi- unit housing, such as condominium properties and
cooperative housing, every occurrence of multiple similar components, or outdoor cooking appliances.
The inspector is NOT required to perform procedures or operations that will, in the professional judgment
of the inspector, likely be dangerous to the inspector or to other persons, or to damage the property or its
systems or components, describe or report on systems and components that are not included in this
Standard and that were not inspected, move personal property, furniture, equipment, plants, soil, snow,
ice, and debris, dismantle systems and components, except as explicitly required by this Standard, reset,
reprogram, or otherwise adjust devices, systems, and components affected by inspection required by this
Standard, ignite or extinguish fires, pilot lights, burners, and other open flames that require manual
ignition, or probe surfaces that would be damaged or where no deterioration is visible or presumed to