Inspectable Area: Site
Inspectable Item: Retaining Walls
Believe it or not - this IS a retaining wall according to REAC's definition.

The Level 1 definition says a retaining wall "shows signs of deterioration," whatever the heck that means!

Apparently, it means "any damage, what-so-ever no matter how inconsequential."

Thank goodness they downgraded this from Level 2 to Level 1 in 2013 - this reduced the scoring value to about 1.2 to 1.5 points from twice as much.
This is also a retaining wall.  Yes, it is a "flower bed."  The flower bed is held up by the retaining wall.

All our walls on this page are wooden - so be sure to realize that retaining walls can be brick, block, stone, wood, or plastic, among other materials.

What makes it a retaining wall?

It holds up (retains) dirt or water.

What is deterioration, anyway?

Peeling paint?  Crooked pieces?

This defect is in the eye and the imagination of your inspector - s o be aggressive in preparing your property for inspection: check all retaining walls closely!

This one has pretty obviously failed, making the defect Level 3, now worth 5 or 6 points!

What constitutes "failing?"

What is the function?

The function is to hold up or hold back dirt.

If dirt gets past the wall, it has failed.

Example: there is only a small hole in the wall, but dirt or mud is oozing or falling through it.

That's Level 3 - the wall is failing to hold back the dirt.
Full definitions, derived from Federal Register
Retaining Walls (Site)
A wall built to support or prevent the advance of a mass of earth or water.
Damaged/Falling/Leaning (Retaining Walls—Site)
Deficiency: A retaining wall structure is deteriorated, damaged, falling, or leaning.
Level of Deficiency:
- Level 1:  A retaining wall shows some signs of deterioration, damage, falling or leaning, but it still functions as it should, and it is not a safety risk.
- Level 2:  N/A
- Level 3:  A retaining wall is damaged and has failed or is a safety risk.