What's a home insurance inspection? | PEMCO

May 2, 2024 by PEMCO Insurance

GettyImages-1332576901.jpgYou may be familiar with home inspections as a part of the home-buying process. Home inspections are a great way to ensure the structure and property are safe and free of any major (potentially expensive!) issues before you buy. However, home inspections can also be a valuable part of the insurance process, too. 
Home insurance inspections are a common tool that helps to assess a home’s condition, which can be indicative of its replacement cost. These inspections can also reveal hazards that might increase liability exposure as well as potential risk for future losses. 
Typically, home insurance inspections are initiated by PEMCO as part of our due diligence to assess potential risk and validate the accuracy of the replacement cost of your home, in case of a covered event like a home fire. 
These types of inspections are more common for older homes, high-value homes, homes in high-risk fire areas, homes built on a slope or near a body of water, and homes with increased liability factors (e.g., swimming pools, trampolines). However, home insurance inspections can be scheduled for any home. 

What to expect during an insurance inspection

PEMCO will send you a letter in the mail, informing you that an inspector will be coming to your property to take photos. Once the inspection is complete, the inspector will send information related to the condition, value, and/or liability exposures (if present), as well as photos, to PEMCO. If any more information is needed, PEMCO will contact you. 
Here are a few other things you can expect: 

  1. At least one day before the inspection, a company representative will call you to confirm the date and approximate time. 

  1. If the inspection cannot be completed as requested, or the homeowner refuses the inspection, the policy may be subject to cancellation or non-renewal. 

  1. If the inspection is only external (the outside of your home), you do not need to be present. However, you might need to be home to provide access for the inspector if you live in a gated community or have otherwise restricted accessibility (gates, fencing, a dog in the yard). 

  1. Homes with a replacement cost of more than $1M may require both an interior and exterior inspection. If your home requires an interior inspection, it will be scheduled at a time and date that is convenient for both parties. The inspector will send photos and information regarding condition, replacement value, and potential liability exposure to PEMCO. If any additional information is needed, PEMCO will communicate with you. 

Sometimes, an option for a digital home insurance inspection is provided. This option requires interior photos of the kitchen, living room, and bathrooms, as well as any specialty features of the home. To do this, PEMCO customers can use the eSurvey self-inspection app to take photos of their home using a smartphone. This option requires a current e-mail address on file with PEMCO. 

Common areas and features observed

Exterior inspection: 

  • The roof and gutter systems 

  • Proximity to slope 

  • Proximity to body of water 

  • Upkeep and maintenance of the home, other structures, and premises 

  • Basement and foundation 

  • HVAC and fuel systems 

  • Chimneys and fireplaces 

  • Decks, patios, swimming pools, and trampolines 

Interior inspection: 

  • Home appliances 

  • Walls and flooring  

  • Attic spaces and crawl spaces 

  • Anti-theft systems (home security systems) 

  • Smoke and carbon monoxide detectors 

  • Systems, including plumbing, electrical, and HVAC. 

Benefits of an inspection 

Maintaining your property and having an adequate estimated replacement cost is in everyone’s best interest. You want to make sure you get an accurate and appropriate value if you ever experience a major covered loss. 

After an inspection, you may be informed that some issues may have been identified, and you may be given a stated amount of time to make improvements to your property or updates to your insurance policy. Often, these improvements will also improve the health, safety, and well-being of you and your family. 

What happens if there are significant concerns? 

Your property may be deemed uninsurable due to issue(s) detected during the inspection. If this occurs, your homeowner’s insurance will be cancelled or non-renewed. 

How to have a successful inspection 

Your home should demonstrate pride of ownership at the time of our inspection.  

The best way to ensure a good outcome is by not deferring maintenance.  

Complete routine home maintenance(s) and fixing of any issues, such as a leaky roof or cracked foundation, as soon as possible to minimize damage to your home and protect your investment.  

  • Basement: Look for cracks in the foundation, signs of mold, mildew or water damage. 

  • Attic: Check for water damage and indication of insect or rodents, etc. 

  • Roof: Remove debris, replace missing shingles. 

  • Chimney: Look for cracks, missing mortars or bricks. 

  • Gutters: Empty and clean out seasonal debris, check for holes. 

  • Windows: Check for any broken seals. 

  • Systems: Check and correct any outstanding maintenance to plumbing, electrical, and HVAC. 

  • Premises: Remove any clutter on your property such as old cars (and other unused vehicles) and large debris.

If you have any questions about your homeowners insurance, or want to know more about inspections, you can speak with a licensed agent at 1-800-467-3626. You can also speak with your local PEMCO agent. To make adjustments to your policy or review your coverage, you can log in to your self-service account at, or use the Go PEMCO mobile app. 
Thanks for trusting PEMCO with your insurance needs. 

This article is for informational purposes only. Implementing one or more of these suggestions does not guarantee insurance coverage from PEMCO. 

Share on social media

Comments on this post