Below are two text book examples of why you should have your home inspected, whether it's 100 years old, or brand new.
The photo above shows a fireplace flue, or chimney,
A closer view of the label shows that the label reads "Hot surface, maintain a minimum 1 inch clearance from combustible materials."
Now, even if you are not a home inspector, you can see that this vent should not come in contact with potentially flammable materials, right?
A little back story regarding this new home construction and this defect. The above information was delivered to the SAVVY home buyer and equally SAVVY agent that hired a professional home inspector. The SAVVY home buyer and SAVVY agent presented this repar request to the home builder for an easy, dare I say, cost free repair. The builder flat refused to correct this issue, even though the vent manufacturer and a Licensed home inspector state that a change is necessary. Incredible! Why wouldn't a home builder want to take care of their customer, especially when it costs them nothing?
The answer is simple: Home builders in Texas are not licensed, and sometimes have zero training or education in home building.
I've said it before and I'll say it again: you NEED to hire a licensed independent home inspector to inspect your home! Protect your investment!
Below is great info to protect your home and your family. Your best bet is always planning ahead, including properly installed and tested smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors.
Report: NFPA's "Home Structure Fires" (PDF)
This report examines causes and circumstances of home structure fires reported to local fire departments in the U.S. Estimates are provided of home fires and losses overall, and for fires in one- or two-family homes and for apartments or other multi-family housing. The discussion of major causes includes key findings from the more detailed reports on the topic. Victim age is also included.