What standards does the "home" inspector use for foundations and foundation defects?
Here is the verbatim requirement from Rule 535.228 applicable to all "Home" inspectors:
(a) Foundations. The inspector shall:
(1) inspect slab surfaces, foundation framing components, subflooring, and related structural components;
(2) report: (A) the type of foundation(s); and (B) the vantage point from which the crawl space was inspected; and
(3) generally report present and visible indications used to render the opinion of adverse performance, such as: (A) open or offset concrete cracks; (B) binding, out-of-square, non-latching, warped, or twisted doors or frames; (C) framing or frieze board separations; (D) out-of-square wall openings or separations at wall openings or between the cladding and window/door frames; (E) sloping floors, countertops, cabinet doors, or window/door casings; (F) wall, floor, or ceiling cracks; (G) rotating, buckling, cracking, or deflecting masonry cladding; (H) separation of walls from ceilings or floors; and (I) soil erosion, subsidence or shrinkage adjacent to the foundation and differential movement of abutting flatwork such as walkways, driveways, and patios;
(4) report as Deficient: (A) exposed or damaged reinforcement; (B) a crawl space that does not appear to be adequately ventilated; (C) crawl space drainage that does not appear to be adequate; (D) deteriorated materials; (E) damaged beams, joists, bridging, blocking, piers, posts, pilings, or subfloor; (F) non-supporting piers, posts, pilings, columns, beams, sills, or joists; and (G) damaged retaining walls related to foundation performance; and
(5) render a written opinion as to the performance of the foundation. (b) Specific limitations for foundations. The inspector is not required to: (1) enter a crawlspace or any area where headroom is less than 18 inches or the access opening is less than 24 inches wide and 18 inches high; (2) provide an exhaustive list of indicators of possible adverse performance; or (3) inspect retaining walls not related to foundation performance.