hurricane prep

Tampa Hurricane Prep: We Did Good

Some might say we got lucky, some say it doesn’t make sense. According to one meteorologist, it was the and of God why Tampa got off so easy. We were expecting a direct hit from an intense hurricane and yet, what we experienced was mild. To say the least. We did good Tampa. And just in case, here’s what you need to know for the next hurricane prep.

The earlier you prep, the better

We ran out of a lot of things. We ran out of sand for the sandbags, gas for the cars, water in the stores, and plywood for boarding up our home. The people who decided to go ahead and get what they needed early are the ones who suffered the least. Lesson learned, the sooner you get what you need, the better.

Prepping for no power or water is difficult

I can honestly say the most difficult effect of the storm was losing power and water. Some were without power and water for almost a week. Others didn’t even lose power or water. Now that you’ve had the experience you can prepare even better. For those that didn’t, here’s what you need to know: everything takes longer to do and it will get hot pretty fast. I suspect more people will be investing in generators.

Hold on to your plywood

While we’ve dodged a bullet, hurricane season isn’t over quite yet. We’ve still endured the effects of flooding in various areas around Tampa Bay and we have seen what others have endured as a result of the hurricane. Before you quickly rid your home of your hurricane supplies, wait for the end of the season. You can also hold on to your supplies for a rainy day.

Divinity Inspection Services will inspect your home rain or shine. While we don’t recommend scheduling a home inspection during a hurricane, sometimes learning about a home best is during a storm. Schedule your home inspection online or give us a call to answer any of your questions!

street flooding

How To Help Prevent Street Flooding

If you have noticed your street or driveway is prone to flooding, then you could be contributing to the problem. Here are a few tips to help prevent street flooding that you can implement during this rainy season.

1. Start with your storm drains

Keep your storm drains clean and free of debris. If you noticed a clogged grate on your street, do everyone a favor and rake it up. Clogged grates are the main reason for street flooding.

2. You are responsible for your culverts

Culverts are pipes that carry storm water under a roadway. These culverts can get clogged and create street flooding. Property owners are responsible for the maintenance of these private drainage systems so keep your eye on yours.

3. Test your sump pump

The last thing you want to deal with is a sump pump over flow! Test your sump pump and make sure it is ready if a storm hits.

4. Have emergency service numbers on hand for an emergency

We hope this is never the case, but if it is, you will want to be prepared. If you know a big storm is headed your way then take an extra step and have emergency service numbers on hand should you need them.

5. Prepare your home when your gone on vacation

This is one of the most commonly forgotten tasks. During summer many families go on vacation and they don’t consider what would happen if a big storm were to hit their home while they were gone. Is your home prepared to defend itself without you? Make sure it is before you leave.

Keep your family safe and contribute to neighborhood safety by using these tips to prevent street flooding. And contact Divinity Inspection Services for any home inspection needs.

Home Inspection issues in Tampa

The Most Common Home Inspection Issues in Tampa

All around the United States each state faces their own common issues. Depending on the region’s weather, some homes go through much more hardship than others. I think it’s safe to say Florida has its own unique set circumstances when it comes to weather. Most days it is hot. Every once in a while we have random cold days, and if we’re lucky enough they string together to make a “cold front”. What we don’t have to do is to face the challenges that come with freezing or below freezing temperatures, snow, or tornadoes. Tornadoes in Tampa are rare. What we do have to be concerned with is hurricane season, flooding and a whole lot of humidity! As a result, there is a pattern of common home inspection issues you can prepare for or prepare to address. Check out some of the most common home inspection issues in Tampa below.

Sinkholes are all over

Florida has more sinkholes that any other state in the entire U.S.A. Let that ‘sink in’ for a second. As a result, the government in Florida has taken precautions, as well as created specific programs, to address sinkholes. There’s no need to fret over the possibility of sinkholes because they really aren’t as common as you might think. However, be prepared that when you are looking at a home for sale there is always a possibility that a sinkhole is under the foundation. If a sinkhole does exist that does not mean the property is dangerous. Especially if the sinkhole issue has already been addressed.

Roof Issues

Heat, humidity, low hanging trees and insufficient maintenance are all causes of roof damage. And in Tampa we have all three pretty much all the time. Many homeowners do not maintain their landscaping over their roofs. This would include cutting down any branches that might be hanging over the roof on laying on the roof. The intense heat and mix with humidity causes roof damage at an accelerated rate. This can be a very big expense and one you would definitely want to know about before purchasing the home.

Flooding and Flawed Drainage

Tampa was built on swamp land – which means a lot of water everywhere. Flooding is a very common occurrence in Tampa and flawed drainage is an issue we come across often. If you are considering purchasing a home and you have the opportunity to drive through the neighborhood during heavy rain, we highly suggest it. During the heavy rain you will be able to see if there are any flooding issues within the neighborhood. Also drive past the home you want to purchase and take a look to see if you can spot any flooding in the yard, driveway, or street.

Not every issue uncovered during an inspection is that serious, and blowing a minor problem out of proportion could create bad vibes and spell “no sale. If you’re the seller, how much is the problem going to cost you to fix, or how much will you have to concede to the buyer to make the repairs? If you’re the buyer, what should you ask from the seller, or should you just walk away from this house no matter how much you love it? Your home inspector and your real estate agent can help guide you to make these decisions. Give us a call today to schedule your home inspection now!

prelisting home inspection

Do I need a Prelisting Home Inspection?

During the process of selling a home the purchasers will require a home inspection. If your home will eventually have a home inspection done, why do you need a prelisting home inspection? How do you know when you should be considering paying for a home inspection before you put your house up for sale? These are common questions we run into with home owners. What many don’t know is the time, money, and headache a prelisting home inspection can save.

Who needs a Prelisting Home Inspection

Not everyone needs to have their home inspected before listing their home for sale. In fact, you could argue that most people don’t. We won’t argue that most people do, but we want you to be able to make an informed decision before bypassing this option. Here are some indications to consider before deciding:

  • You doubt the condition of your home, whether it be the home’s entirety or something specific
  • If you need to identify and fix major problems before listing the home for sale / uncover any potential “deal breakers”
  • You want ease of mind by knowing what any home inspection might uncover before entering the selling process
  • If you want to speed up the sales process


As you can see the list is long and we can go into more detail. Give us a call if you are considering getting a prelisting home inspection done and we are happy to offer our guidance.

Benefits of a Prelisting Home Inspection

If you answered ‘yes’ to any of the questions above then it’s time to seriously consider getting a prelisting home inspection. Let us explain how it works and some of the direct benefits you can expect, both for you personally and for the purchaser, as a result of a home inspection.

First, a home inspector will inspect your home from top to bottom before you list your home on the market. The inspector will write up a full report of any minor or major issues with your home. You then have the option to address these issues before listing your house or leave everything as is. No matter what, the decision is yours to make. Either way you can work your decision into the listing price. If you choose not to repair any major issues you will have to compensate this into the listing price. If you do choose to repair any major issues then you might be able to increase the listing price of the home. Ask your agent to help you determine what is best for your situation. Both the report and overview can be made available to real estate professionals and prospective buyers.

With a home inspection report, you have now completed a major step in the home buying process. Prospective buyers can have ease of mind because they already reviewed your inspection report. Some buyers, if they are satisfied with the report, will choose not to have the home inspected a second time. This makes the entire process faster. If buyers decide to have a second inspection done you can rest easy knowing you already have all of the information.

Share or not, you cannot hide

That being said, keep in mind that you do not have to share the prelisting inspection report with anyone. Especially if you have addressed or repaired any issues, there may be no benefit to sharing these previous flaws with prospective buyers. To clarify – you should never try to hide major issues in the home from any agents or prospective buyers. Being upfront about the condition of the home will help to eliminate conditional offers or issues with negotiations, resulting in the seller having to sell the home more than once because the buyer has changed their mind.

If you are interested in scheduling a prelisting home inspection today, start by scheduling your inspection directly on our website! Please call us with any specific questions you might have.

holiday cleaning checklist

The Holiday Cleaning Checklist

If you are the one hosting a holiday party, then you might already be thinking about your holiday cleaning checklist. Keeping a home organized, much less clean, during the Christmas season can be very challenging. Especially if you have young ones running around and contributing to the mess. Some may even attempt to de-clutter their home before the end of the year to start off on the right foot. Either way, this checklist should get you moving in the right direction. This holiday cleaning checklist can help you get and stay organized, create a sparkling clean home in time for gatherings, or de-clutter your house before the year is up.

One Up and Two Down

Some holiday gifts can replace something you already own. Unfortunately, many times we forget to get rid of the item replaced. You end up with two coffee makers or five sets of pajamas. This year, when you get one item try getting rid of two. This will not only make sure you replace an item, it also helps you to de-clutter. If your child received new socks, find the old or outgrown ones and throw them out.

Not Everything has to go Up

Even an attic full of decorations doesn’t mean the house has to be full of decorations too. This year, especially if you are showing your home for sale, keep the decorations to a minimum. Keep some decorations put away and just use the minimal on both the inside and the outside.


Oosoujii is a Japanese holiday dedicated to de-cluttering and cleaning the home. The last week of the year is spent focusing on the home. In Oosoujii, each year is seen as separate and distinct, the final week of the old year is devoted to cleaning, decluttering and organizing.

We hope these little tips get you moving in the right direction. There are many tasks you can add to your holiday cleaning checklist and these are only a few to get you started. We do home inspections all throughout the holiday season and you can make an appointment with us directly on our website.