What’s the deal with the “11-Month” inspection? I thought there were 12 months in a year. Or is this just the classic case of “11” being one louder than “10”?


Oh, I’m sorry – I didn’t see you there.

What Is The 11-Month Warranty Inspection?

So the 11-month – or 11th Month – inspection is also known as a Warranty Inspection which is the builder’s warranty of a new construction home that covers you for the first year of the house. This inspection is typically done one month before it expires so that you have an opportunity to get a thorough inspection and have enough time to partner with your realtor to make a claim if needed. Have the inspection too soon and you risk not catching something that comes up last minute (like all warranty-covered defects, right?!). Have the inspection too late and you won’t have enough time make a claim.


What Is The Difference From A Typical Home Inspection?

None. At least, not here at Wilson + Sons. For one, not all warranties are created equal. And since we don’t have a catalog of the world’s collection of warranties to create a custom inspection for each occasion, we just inspect the whole house in accordance with the standards of practice set forth by the state of NC or SC and by InterNACHI. Most warranties don’t cover landscaping, appliances, or holes in the drywall that you punched out of anger because the dog pooped on the 5-year-old’s bed. Many warranties do cover cosmetic defects as a result of poor workmanship, siding, electrical system hazards, and major structural defects like a sagging roof. Different builders will have different amounts and extents of coverage, so you will need to be familiar with your warranty.

The other reason our warranty inspection is not trimmed or abbreviated is because a lot can happen to a house in a year. Even if there are things that aren’t covered by your builder’s warranty, you need to know the health of your home and be able to plan accordingly. In all good conscience, we could not allow a defect to go unreported just because it’s not part of your warranty. That’s not how we roll.

We also provide the same perks and services with an 11-month warranty inspection as buyer’s inspection such as free short-term Sewer Guard coverage for your sewer line (which covers you for longer when you get a sewer line inspection from us), and a free lifetime Home Binder account which includes things like automatic recall checks and maintenance reminders. We can also check your water quality and see what type of filtration you may benefit from. Air quality testing is also available to you to inspect for the presence of radon gas or mold.


Next Steps:

If you purchased a new construction home in the past year, partner with your real estate agent to schedule a warranty inspection. You can do this whole thing without an agent, but your realtor will be a huge help to you when making a claim.

  • Schedule the inspection with us online and click on the box for 11-Month Warranty Inspection;
  • Let us know what concerns you have or things that you have noticed. Except for poltergeists – we aren’t licensed for hauntings;
  • Understand your builder’s warranty and what is eligible for a claim. Here is some good info on builder’s warranties from the Federal Trade Commission;
  • Go over your report with your agent and follow the builder’s process for claims;
  • Budget and plan for repairs that are not covered by your warranty;
  • Check your email for the Home Binder account and set it up!
  • Call us next year for a home maintenance inspection.


“I need a home inspection to make sure everything is up to code.”
This is an example of a common request when someone contacts us for a home inspection in North Carolina. Does a home inspection look for code violations? Well… yes and no.
No in the sense that this is not a code compliance inspection. As home inspectors, we do not comment on a house’s compliance with local building codes or blatantly call something out as being a code violation.
Yes in the sense that as home inspectors, we generally have a working knowledge of codes and standards so that we can identify defects, possible causes of those defects, and safety hazards. Even still, there is no calling out of any code violations.

Home Inspection Are Not Pass/Fail

It’s important for clients and agents to understand that a home inspection is not a pass/fail inspection. This is an assessment of the house’s overall health at a particular point in time.
Rather than being concerned with code, we are concerned primarily with safety. If there is a part of a home where its compliance with code is questionable, we may use language such as:
“This is not a recommended practice”
“I Recommend upgrading to current standards
Why don’t we call out code violations? Well, the answer is simple: We do not have that authority. Even if we are aware of building code, there is a lot of complication surrounding it.

A Practical Example

For example, a Concord home inspection on a historic home built in 1901 that has not been updated since 1960 will not have GFCI receptacles installed in the bathroom.
By 2021, GFCI protection has long since been a requirement. However, the house built in 1901 is grandfathered and not required to conform to current codes. The renovations that were done in 1960 will then held to standards of 1960. Heck, in 1960, the GFCI wasn’t invented yet.
However, because it is a safety hazard, it will be called out as such. It was introduced into the code a little over a decade later because people were dying from electrocution in their bathrooms when water and electricity mixed.
The defect in that instance is not that it was code violation. The defect is that it is a safety hazard. Calling a code violation does nothing for a potential buyer of that home. It wasn’t required in 1960. End of story. On the other hand, calling it a safety hazard has a small chance to be beneficial when it comes time to negotiate.

Are Home Inspectors Allowed To Quote Code?

In the state of North Carolina, home inspectors are not strictly prohibited from citing code, but there are very strict guidelines. This is from the North Carolina Home Inspection Licensure Board:
§ 143-151.58. Duties of licensed home inspector.
(a2) State Building Code. – If a licensee includes a deficiency in the written report of a home inspection that is stated as a violation of the North Carolina State Residential Building Code, the licensee must do all of the following:
(1) Determine the date of construction, renovation, and any subsequent installation or replacement of any system or component of the home.
(2) Determine the State Building Code in effect at the time of construction, renovation, and any subsequent installation or replacement of any system or component of the home.
(3) Conduct the home inspection using the building codes in effect at the time of the construction, renovation, and any subsequent installation or replacement of any system or component of the home.
In order to fully inform the client, if the licensee describes a deficiency as a violation of the State Building Code in the written report, then the report shall include the information described in subdivision (1) of this subsection and photocopies of the relevant provisions of the State Building Code used pursuant to subdivision (2) of this subsection to determine any violation stated in the report. The Board may adopt rules that are more restrictive on the use of the State Building Code by home inspectors.


A home inspector in North Carolina is allowed to cite code and inform a client of a code violation. However, if the home inspector is not a qualified code inspector, this can be quite dangerous. It can lead not only to lawsuits, but most importantly to a severely misinformed client. This provision in the North Carolina statutes is a nice way of telling home inspectors to stay in their lane!
Moreover, if an inspector is not certified by the local governing body in code compliance, but still elects to cite code in the report, the inspector runs the risk of not being covered under their errors and omissions insurance. Should a mistake be made and lead to a lawsuit, the insurance company may say that inspector did this at their own risk. The reason being the inspector went well outside the standards of practice and an insurance company covers an inspector largely based on the standards of practice in their particular jurisdiction.
Just remember – a house cannot fail a home inspection. Home inspectors in North Carolina are allowed to cite code under very specific restrictions, but cannot enforce code. Although most home inspectors will not quote code in their reports, inspectors will use their knowledge of current and previous code to inform their inspection and communication as a means to keep you safe and properly informed.