What is the difference between a full home inspection and a four-point insurance inspection?

Saturday, May 8, 2021

The easiest way to explain the difference between a home inspection and a four-point is that one is for you and the other is for the insurance company. A full inspection gives the homebuyer a thorough assessment of the condition of a home, along with a listing of problems that require repair. 

    But the four-point inspection is essentially a standard-form questionnaire that an inspector fills out. It is focussed on looking for defects in the four key components of a home (roof, electrical, plumbing, and HVAC) that might cause an insurance claim in the near future. For example, a four-point does not determine whether your a/c system is functioning up to par. It only notes if it is older or has evidence of current or previous condensate leakage, both of which foretell possible expensive future claims.

    Insurance companies usually request a four-point inspection as a prerequisite to offering coverage for homes over 30 years old. Many companies will accept your home inspection in lieu of a four-point. However we recommend not giving the insurance company your full home inspection. It’s more information than they need, and you are usually better off getting your inspector to also do a four-point form, which is often offered at a discount when done at the same time as the home inspection. This avoids having an underwriter request repairs or decline coverage over an issue that would not be covered in a four-point inspection.

• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Here’s links to a collection of some of our other blog posts about 4-POINT INSPECTIONS:

• Will a four point inspection lower my homeowners insurance premium?

Is the 4-point insurance inspection strictly pass or fail?

How do I get my home ready for a four point inspection for insurance?

Will a house without air conditioning pass a 4 point inspection?   

Do I need a home inspection to get insurance? 

How long does it take for a four point inspection?

• Why does my homeowner's insurance want a four point inspection? 

 Why is a fuse box/panel an insurance problem for homebuyers? 

 Which water pipes are an insurance problem and possibly uninsurable? 

• How do I get insurance if my home can't pass a 4-point inspection? 

At what age of the house does an insurance company require a four point inspection to issue or renew homeowners insurance?  

• Can a patched roof pass a 4-point inspection? 

 Why are old electrical components not always "grandfathered" as acceptable by home inspectors?

• Do I need to get a four point inspection for insurance for an older condominium? 

Is a four-point inspection mandatory in Florida for insurance? 

How long is a four point inspection valid?

Can you fail a four point inspection? 

• Is a four point inspection report transferable? 

 What’s the difference between a four-point and wind mitigation inspection? 

• What causes a house to fail a four point inspection?  

• How often do you need a four point inspection? 

• Does my house need a heating system to pass a four point inspection? 

• Is an inspector required to open an electrical panel cover (dead front) during a four point inspection?

   Visit our INSURANCE page for other related blog posts on this subject, or go to the INDEX for a complete listing of all our articles.


How To Look At A House

McGarry and Madsen's home inspection blog for buyers of  

site-built, mobile/manfuactured and modular homes






Air Conditioner & Furnace Age/Size




Aging in Place


Click Below  

for Links

to Collections

of Blog Posts

by Subject


Doors and Windows


Energy Efficiency

Fireplaces and Chimneys

Heating and Air Conditioning

Home Inspection

Hurricane Resistance

Electrical Receptacle Outlets

Electrical Panels

Garages and Carports

Common Problems

Exterior Walls & Structures



Life Expectancy

Mobile/Manufactured Homes

Older and

Historic Houses

Mold, Lead & Other Contaminants

Modular Homes

Metal Roofs



Pool and Spa

Roof and Attic




"Should I Buy A..."


Termites, Wood Rot

& Pests

Structure and Rooms


Water Heaters

Water Heater Age

Septic Tank Systems

Plumbing Pipes


When It First

Became Code

Park Model Homes

Shingle Roofs


Wind Mitigation Form

"Does A Home


"What Is The Difference Between..."


Concrete and

Concrete Block


Rain Gutters


Crawl Spaces

Building Permits

Clay Soil




HUD-Code for

Mobile Homes

Flat (Low Slope) Roofs

Sprinkler Systems

4-Point Inspections

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Building Codes

Inspector Licensing

& Standards

Washers and Dryers



Electrical Wiring

Plumbing Drains

and Traps

Smoke & CO Alarms

Top 5 results given instantly.

Click on magnifying glass

for all search results.



Electrical Switches


Water Intrusion

Electrical - Old

and Obsolete

Foundation Certifications

Tiny Houses

About Us