Latest Posts

Your House Will Make You Sick

By Dan Curl | Nov 15, 2019 |

Mold; like asbestos, lead, and radon, is a potential health risk. Fear of mold is a hot-button topic Let’s use Building Science (BS) to distinguish molds’ true effects from the fictions of marketing and conventional wisdom.       All mold is fungi Fungi are any member of a kingdom of organisms that lack chlorophyll,…

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Here is my take on the year just past and hope for the one to come

By Dan Curl | Jan 15, 2018 |

The Market is Maturing Big homes in prime neighborhoods average 1-2 million. 300K starter homes in hot neighborhoods forced first time buyers to look farther out. Most young buyers don’t want fixer-uppers. The result: high renovation costs and long wait times     New Construction Rebounds New construction, fully recovered from the 2009 recession, includes small-lot starter and retirement homes, spec…

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Anatomy of a Renovation

By Dan Curl | Dec 20, 2017 |

Renovated homes are a big part of an inspector’s business. Some renovations are well done, some not. Read on for a brief dissection of my renovation The Theme  I admire the simplicity and elegance of Japanese architecture. “Dan’s Temple” was the result. The Beginning As I age it’s harder to devote time and energy to…

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Unintended Consequences: 7 Home Products to Reconsider

By Dan Curl | Oct 22, 2017 |

Every technology created to solve a problem comes with its own set of problems.  Garrett Hardin Sustainability is the ability to continue a defined behavior indefinitely.  Home products succeed or fail over time and change as negative effects are corrected. Inspectors, wedged between the immediacy of a home purchase and long-term sustainability, are leery of new…

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The Future of How Homes Work

By Dan Curl | Jun 14, 2017 |

It’s been a crazy-busy spring.  So much so that I’m only now getting around to writing about the Georgia Association of Home Inspectors March conference, plus a few personal observations Proposed Electric Code:  Plugged Into the Future One goal of the code is to anticipate future trends The future is here: for the first time…

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Looking ahead, Looking back

By Dan Curl | Jan 31, 2017 |

Comments, observations and opinions on my 30th inspection year Down the Road Drive-to-mortgage bigger, newer, cheaper suburban homes still dominate the market.  But Millennials have altered the equation by demanding neighborhood amenities and short commutes. Fundamental change toward efficient and sustainable construction methods and materials is gathering speed. Drivers like lead the way. The bigger…

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Three Insights from the Thinking Man’s Home Inspector

By Dan Curl | Jan 24, 2017 |

Field Generals and First Responders Not for sale inspectors are ethically bound. Our business model is built on impartial reporting. “Inspectors shall avoid conflicts of interest or activities that compromise, or appear to compromise, professional independence, objectivity, or inspection integrity.” We recommend contractors based on quality of work, not referral fees.   Something for everyone …

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Ten Takes on Atlanta Real Estate

By Dan Curl | Jun 27, 2016 |

1. Spring buying season was hot hot hot And what a wild ride it was; unpredictable, intense, frustrating, exhilarating….that’s why I’m writing March’s newsletter in June.  2. Neighborhood truck parade To paraphrase J.B. Jackson:  New houses built for the professional middle class are divided into rooms for specialized functions-media rooms, exercise rooms, bedroom suites. A steady caravan of trucks and vans from outside these…

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My Takeaways on 2015

By Dan Curl | Jan 23, 2016 |

Trends Living Large Big sells no matter how small the household Bling to Bland: former luxury items like granite countertops, doublepane windows, efficient construction and fancy master bathrooms are now standard     Hot and so Pricey Midtown, Virginia Highlands, Decatur, Brookhaven, Dunwoody, and other close-in home values and rents are up Millennial Market 30-somethings…

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Why a good contractor is hard to find

By Dan Curl | Nov 17, 2015 |

Home improvement is not as easy as it looks. Homes are unique, not commodities like facial tissue or breakfast cereal. Homes differ in age, the number character occupants, improvements, orientation, methods of construction, and materials. One size or solution rarely fits.   Home repair and improvement demand equal amounts of brainpower and physical strength. Visible defects are only the tip of the iceberg. The true extent of damage…

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