The Operating Systems, Lower Level, Interior and Exterior Inspection sections are EXTREMELY condensed versions of those found in our home inspection book: Home Inspection Business From A to Z
Real Estate Appraisers are not required to be home inspectors. However, I will include these sections anyway to give you some basic details about home inspections.
Entrances, Steps and Porches
Check all entrances, steps and porches for structural sturdiness and any tripping hazards. Make sure there are no cracks or uneven sections in any of the steps. The landing platform is the standing area in front of a door. Make sure there is a large enough space to safely open the exterior doors while someone is standing in front of them. You don't want anyone to be knocked down the steps when the door is opened. (Unless of course it's an unwanted guest).
There should be handrails for all stairs that are more than two steps in height. Make sure the handrails aren't loose or decayed. Recommend that they be installed when not noted. All steps should have an even and uniform height so that there's no tripping hazards. If there are any wood stairs, the base of the wood should be resting on concrete pads above the soil. This will prevent rot and termite infestation.
If there's an enclosed porch, tell the client to check with town hall to see if all valid permits and approvals have been filed. Sometimes people enclose an open porch area without knowing building permits are needed.