Pre-Drywall Inspections Reveal Defects Missed by Builder and Code Inspectors
A pre drywall inspection, also know as a framing inspection, is exactly what it sounds like. It is when an inspection is done during the home building process, after the framing, plumbing, electrical and HVAC are completed, but before the drywall stage of construction. In the last 10 years we have done hundreds of pre drywall inspections in Chesterfield, and Richmond and I can confidently say that yes, a pre-drywall inspection is a good idea .
Every industry is plagued with the “not my job” mentality. When the drywall contractors show up, they are not going to slow down, or halt their job if they see any defects. They might not even see them. They are there for one purpose and that is too install drywall. If there are any defects they are going to be hidden until they start exhibiting symptoms. The symptoms could be immediate, or take years to develop.
Although you will have a project manager who is overseeing the build, hiring your own inspector will give you, the home buyer, added peace of mind. The city building inspector assigned to your neighborhood has hundreds of other homes to check. They are often over worked and have zero liability for any missed defects. A third-party inspector is going to spend more time, and exercise a higher level of detail. A good home inspector will have a working knowledge of local building codes, best practices, and industry standards, to be able to identify defects in the framing and other safety issues.
I personally been denied access to the home by more than one construction manager, but any reputable builder should allow you have any type of home inspections that you want. Always read your builder contract to make sure you are allowed to have this type of inspection.
In the videos below you will see defects with floor joists, exterior framing, flashing tape, electrical work, plumbing lines, the laundry room, and many other components. Of course, this profesional service includes a detailed report of all the issues I found.
Additionally, you will want to make sure you get a final inspection. As noted, the county inspector may not find everything. The final inspection will include all the major systems and a comprehensive report.