Frequently Asked Questions

Who is FDRW, Inc.?
FDRW stands for Foundation, Drainage and Retaining Walls. We inspect foundations, drainage and retaining wall issues and provide recommendations for remediation, improvement or installation. We work with homeowners, Realtors, buyers and sellers, property management companies, attorney and contractors,.

What are your licenses or qualifications?
We are licensed by the California Contractors State Licensing Board as an “A” (General Engineering) and a “B” (General Building) contractor.

How many inspectors do you have?
Our inspections are completed by one inspector, Mr. Bob Brockman. Over the last 25 years Mr. Brockman has personally evaluated more than 6,000 structures throughout the entire Bay Area, specializing in foundation, drainage and retaining wall issues. He is the qualifying licensee and has spoken at various home inspection conferences and has extensive experience as an expert witness.

Do you provide a written report of the inspection?
After our site visit, we provide a written document for all inspections outlining our onsite observation summarizing our observations, conclusions and recommendations.

When is the site visit inspection fee due?
The inspection fee is due and payable on-site at the completion of the site visit.

Do you accept credit cards for payment?
Yes, however there is a $5.00 transaction processing fee.

Can we pay through an escrow?

What if it is an apartment building or a duplex, does the inspection price change?
If the building requires longer than our regularly scheduled inspection times, there will be a fee increase. Please call for more details.

Do you take pictures?
We do not take pictures during an inspection unless specifically requested prior to the inspection. There is an additional $50.00 fee if requested, also due on-site. Pictures are emailed along with the report.

How much notice is required for a cancellation?
As a courtesy, we request at least twenty-four hours notice. We will call and confirm appointment times the day prior to the inspection.

Do you do inspections on the weekend?
Inspections are only scheduled Tuesday through Thursday.

How long does an appointment take?
A typical inspection takes between an hour to an hour and a half for the inspection and on-site summary.

If I schedule an appointment how long does it take to get my written report?
Written reports are typically released within two to four business days; however, we do our best to provide the report as soon as possible. We email and/or fax all reports and will provide a hard copy mailing when requested.

Do you need access into the crawlspace?

What if my crawlspace is flooded? Will you still inspect it?
If there is safe access we will attempt to inspect the crawlspace. Complete flooding makes access unsafe. Pockets of standing water and muddy soils generally allow adequate access.

Do we need to pull back carpeting?
We do not require that carpet be pulled back or removed. In some cases it is helpful and will be pulled back if requested and with authorization of the owner of the property.

Do all parties have to be present for the inspection?
We recommend having all parties present that wish to discuss our observations, conclusions and recommendations as well to ask questions and allow explanation.

I cannot be there at the time of the inspection; can we still have an inspection?
Yes, the inspection can still be completed as long as there is access to the home; however, payments must be arranged prior to the time and date of the inspection.

Do you need to have access to my neighbor’s property?
Access is only needed when an issue is specifically concerning a neighboring property. We will not access a neighboring property without authorization and access should be authorized prior to the inspection date and time.

Who will you send the report to?
When the inspection is originally scheduled, we obtain as much contact information as is available. Whoever is requesting the inspection will get a copy of the report, as well as anyone authorized within the transaction. We will not release information to anyone not authorized as per the originally scheduled inspection without written authorization.

Do I have to disclose your findings or reports?
All knowledge of findings should be disclosed to all interested parties. We will not release information to others without authorization from our client.

We already had other reports completed (home inspection, pest, etc.); do you need to see them?
No; however, we will be happy to review them if requested. You can submit them to us via email, fax or while on-site.

Do you provide a full home inspection?
No, we only inspect foundations, site drainage, retaining walls and related items.

Do you complete a floor level survey during the inspection?
We generally perform a cursory level survey with a laser to confirm general level variations. A full floor level survey requires additional time and can be scheduled by contacting our office.

Will you discuss your findings with everyone on-site?
It is at the discretion of the party who schedules the inspection.

Are you structural engineers?
No; however, we will provide direction to a structural engineer if deemed necessary.

Do you provide expert witness testimonies?
Yes, we have extensive litigation experience.

What exactly does a foundation inspection entail?
The foundation is observed in all accessible areas and reviewed for defects, distresses, deficiencies and serviceability. General elevation tolerance levels are explored. No destructive testing is performed.

What exactly does a drainage inspection entail?
Existing site drainage systems are located where practical and systems are cursorily tested to verify operation and functionality. Sites are evaluated as to likely deficiencies.

Do you perform corrective work?
We do not complete any corrective work; however, when we provide recommendations for corrective work we will provide various options as well as a reasonably range of costs for the corrective work.