System: Structural Components

American Institute of Inspectors Standards of Practice


5.1 The Inspector SHALL observe and report on visible Structural components including:

  • Foundations and other support and anchoring components.
  • Floors and visible floor framing,
  • Substructure and substructure ventilation.
  • Walls
  • Ceilings
  • Stairs
  • Roofs and visible roof framing.
  • The presence of drainage systems, sumps, sump pumps, and related equipment.

5.2 The inspector SHALL:

  • Identify the type of:
  1. Foundation
  2. Floor structure
  3. Wall structure
  4. Roof structure
  5. Ceiling structure
  • Evaluate components where deterioration is suspected. Probing is NOT required when probing would damage any finished surface.
  • Enter under floor crawl spaces and attic spaces.
  • Report the methods used to observe under floor crawl spaces and attics when these areas are not entered or when access or visibility is limited.
  • Report on signs of unusual or harmful water penetration into/onto the structure or structural components.

5.3 The inspector shall NOT REQUIRED TO:

  • Enter substructure areas that are not accessible or where entry could cause damage or expose the inspector to a hazard.
  • Enter crawl spaces or attic spaces where access opening is less than 18″ x 24″.
  • Enter under floor crawl spaces when obstructed, restricted or when headroom is less than 18 inches below the floor joists.
  • Enter into attics when there is less than 36 inches below rafters or when entry could damage the property, or when dangerous or adverse situations are suspected.
  • Move owner stored items or furnishings, vegetation or debris, or perform any excavations or other intrusive functions to gain access to systems or components.
  • Operate or evaluate the adequacy of sump pumps or drainage systems.
  • Identify size or adequacy of any bolting or bracing systems in the substructure.
  • Perform any intrusive examination or testing.

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