A former constable with the Medicine Hat Police Service, these days Randy McKay is a certified home inspector serving the city of Calgary seven days a week with MR Home Inspection Services Inc. McKay took the time share the importance of home inspections with CREB® as well as his thoughts on Calgary’s best kept secret.

creb®>> What does a home inspector do?

Mckay>> We carry out a visual non-invasive inspection of roof systems, exterior, structure, insulation and ventilation, electrical, permanently installed heating & cooling systems, plumbing and interiors.

creb®>> Why is it important to have a home inspection?

Mckay>> The inspector spends hours looking closer at the dwelling systems identifying issues that need repair or are failing that the average buyer is not trained or equipped to determine.

creb®>> What are the best steps to take to find a good home inspector?

Mckay>> Checking the Internet is today’s way of looking for service. The Better Business Bureau is also a good source (and) asking a friend if they have used an inspector they could recommend. A good home inspector will be a certified member with at least one recognized home inspection association, InterNACHI (International Association of Certified Home Inspectors), and CanNACHI (Canadian Association of Certified Home Inspectors). Also as of Sept. 1, 2012 all home inspectors must be licensed by the Province of Alberta. A home inspector who has his/her credentials in order will be happy to show you their member certificates; so don’t be afraid to ask.

creb®>> Are there any misconceptions as to what’s expected of a home inspector?

Mckay>> Yes, (people) sometimes expect we can inspect things that we cannot see or access to inspect i.e. the foundation walls that are below the ground and covered by inside walls.

creb®>> What’s the most common issue you come across when inspecting homes?

Mckay>> That would be electrical issues such as ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) outlets not working which is a safety issue.

creb®>> What are some potential issues people should be aware of that aren’t necessarily seen by the naked eye?

Mckay>> Moisture issues such as leaks from internal plumbing can occur without being able to see it; staining on drywall will occur when it gets wet but it takes time. The use of moisture meters and thermal imaging camera can detect this before it becomes visible. Electrical issues such as faulty GFCI, arc fault circuit interrupter can be un-operational and without testing the seller or buyer will think it is working which is a safety issue. Faulty wiring such as live exposed conductors are investigated and identified for repair. Aluminum wiring can be a fire hazard if not identified and inspected by an electrical contractor.

creb®>> What’s the best thing to do on a day off in Calgary?

Mckay>> In spring and summer going for a walk with my special needs daughter and cycling.

creb®>> What is Calgary’s best-kept secret?

Mckay>> Fish Creek Park.

creb®>> What’s your favourite room in the house?

Mckay>> My home office, it is full of memories and where I conduct my business.

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