Always Get a Home Inspection
Always, always get a Home Inspection from a Professional Home Inspector. So, what is the purpose of a home inspection?? Why would you (buyer) spend $300-$500 for a Professional Home Inspector to spend 2-4 hours to inspect a home you may or may not actually end up buying?? What can the Inspector do if he/she cannot lift the carpet, move furniture, look into the walls?? How do you really know the condition of the home? Below, I will answer all these questions and do my best to explain why “every buyer” should absolutely pay for a Professional Home Inspection.
For most of us, purchasing a home is the single largest investment we will ever make. We test our cars before we buy them, our TV’s, phones, etc., so why wouldn’t you want to know what is right and wrong with something you are going to buy that costs between $300,000 and $1,000,000 (for most of us).
Over the last 8 years, during my buyers’ homes inspections we have found, mold, foundation cracks, leaking roofs, electrical problems, plumbing issues, pest problems and a variety of other issues. In most cases we were able to get the seller to credit us for the repair or completely fix the repairs before close of escrow.
An impartial inspection by a professional Registered Home Inspector (RHI) or CAHPI National Certificate Holder will provide a large measure of protection from unpleasant surprises and allow you to make an informed decision about your purchase.
Typically an inspection takes between 2 and 3 hours, occasionally longer, and includes an examination of all the major systems such as roofing, structural, exterior and interior finishes, electrical, heating/air conditioning, insulation, plumbing and related components. Other areas of inspection are porches, decks, patios, chimneys, grade, water heater, heating/cooling, kitchen, bathrooms and garage. If there are any other areas of concern a good home inspector will inspect it for you as well.
A good home inspector for the most part does not have to move the furniture or carpet to determine if there are foundation issues. They can typically tell by looking at the windows, doors and walls. If the home inspector sees something wrong with the roof for example, he/she will recommend a professional roof contractor to take a closer look. The buyer has the right, at his/her expense to do any inspection he/she wishes.
At the end of the home inspection, the buyer will receive detailed report on what was found that he/she can use to negotiate the credit or repairs before close of escrow. (The seller, buyers agent and listing agent will get a copy as well).
So how do you choose the right home inspector?? Referrals from a friend, family or co-workers that have recently purchased a home is always the best. Your Realtor should have a list of Professional Homes Inspectors that he/she can provide also.