Frequently Asked Questions
Why do I Need a Home Inspection?
A home is one of the largest purchases you will make. Therefore, a pre-purchase home inspection provides you as much information as possible before finalizing a purchase. A home inspector is trained to be able to evaluate the home in detail, allowing you to make a sound, educated decision. An inspection report should describe the home in detail and highlight the areas of concern. A home inspection is a good idea even if you are already a homeowner. We should all get physical checkups – so why not give your home a checkup?
Many homeowners may be living in homes that have serious problems that if identified early can save considerable repair costs. For example, water leaks can cause expensive damage, but if they are caught early can be repaired at relatively little cost. A home inspection should also give you an outline of the routine maintenance that needs to be done to maintain a home.
Home sellers will want an pre-listing inspection to find and correct problems that a buyer’s inspection would have uncovered. The seller can then make the repairs prior to the home going on the market. Regardless of whether you are a buyer, owner, or seller, you need a home inspection to determine potential issues with a home – It’s About Knowing!
What Should I Look for in a Home Inspector?
Has this inspector gone through any extensive training in home inspection? There are several training companies that provide formal, hands-on training. Beware of those inspectors who have not undergone the specialized education necessary in their field.
How experienced is the home inspector? If an inspector has not been performing inspections very long that does not mean that he or she is not qualified, but it does mean he has less experience to draw upon in evaluating homes.
Is the inspector a member of a professional home inspection organization? Companies that are affiliated with professional organizations are serious about what they do, and they know about all of the new developments in the inspection industry.
What does a Typical Home Inspection Include?
The home inspector’s report should include:
- Heating and Air Conditioning System (temperature permitting)
- Foundation (basement / crawl space / slab)
- Interior (attic / walls / ceilings / floors)
- Exterior (roof / visible insulation / grading)
When Purchasing a Home, When Should I Call for a Home Inspection?
When purchasing a home you will want to have the home inspected within a few days after the purchase agreement is signed. You want to make sure you have a clause in your purchase agreement that allows you to have an inspection and that you have the right to terminate the agreement if you find the home in unsatisfactory condition. This clause should specify the terms to which both the buyer and seller are obligated. If you are working with a Realtor or real estate attorney he/she can explain this step in detail!
Should I be there During the Home Inspection?
We recommend that you be present at the inspection. Your inspector should encourage you to attend and ask questions after the inspection is completed. You should not have to ask the inspector to point out and clarify the areas that are potential problems. This is important because you will be able to see for yourself the extent of problems that are sometimes hard for an inspector to convey in a report. Home inspections are not a pass/fail type of service – they are an informational service, so you should gain as much information as you can by accompanying your inspector!