Why Home Inspections Are Important Before Buying a
Buying a home is the biggest financial commitment most people will ever make. A
home is a major purchase, and not a decision to be entered into lightly. Having
your potential home purchase thoroughly inspected by a qualified home inspector
is an absolute must. There are many potential problem areas in a house that
simply cannot be found in a simple walk through. In order to uncover potential
problems, it is necessary to probe deep, examining such things as the foundation,
the supporting structures and the basement. A good home inspector will take his
or her time and examine all parts of the home.
Why is a home inspection important?
A thorough home inspection is important for a number of reasons. The most
important reason is that a home inspection gives you advance notice of any
problems present in the home. Things like water damage, termite or other insect
damage, radon problems, lead paint, and the presence of asbestos can all be turned
up in a home inspection. Finding these issues, and having them fixed, before the
deal is closed is essential.
A home inspection report also gives the home buyer extra bargaining power when
negotiating the price of the home. By pointing out the problems with the home,
and what they will cost to fix, the buyer can often negotiate a lower purchase
price to cover the cost of needed repairs. If the home inspection report were
not present, this bargaining power would be lost.
Where to find a home inspector?
The home inspection services is a growing industry, and there are many people
and companies who call themselves home inspectors. Some home inspectors are
better than others, and it is important to find a home inspector who is certified
by a reputable home inspection agency. It is also vital that the home inspector
or home inspection company guarantee and stand behind their work.
Home inspectors can be found in your local newspaper, yellow pages or
on the internet. In addition, your real estate agent can provide you with
a list of certified home inspectors in your area.
Deciding on your inspector
Once you have a list of home inspectors to choose from, it is important to
get references from each inspector. Check the references carefully and determine
if the home buyers were satisfied with the inspection and if any problems with
the home were missed by the inspector. Also be sure that the home inspector is
licensed and certified by a reputable home inspection agency such as the
Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI). This membership helps ensure the buyer that
the home inspector has passed certain tests and holds the proper credentials and
knowledge to provide a proper inspection.
Getting the inspection done
After you have found a certified and qualified inspector for your potential home
purchase, it is time to schedule the inspection. Your real estate agent can help
to schedule a time and day for the inspection that is acceptable to both the seller
and the inspector. A thorough home inspection will require access to all parts
of the home, so it is important that the home inspector be granted access to all
areas of the home, both inside and out.
Following up with your home inspection report
A good independent home inspector or home inspection service will provide the
potential home buyer with a thorough report on every part of the home inspection.
The report will cover all parts of the home and all potential defects. The home
inspection report will detail such issues as termite infestation, drywall damage,
water damage, carpet damage, evidence of leaks, etc.
The home inspection report should also contain a list of recommended repairs to
each problem found. Many times the home inspection report will also list an estimated
cost for each of these items. The home inspector may break down the report into
structural issues, safety issues and cosmetic issues.
After the potential home buyer has been presented with the report from the home
inspector, it will be up to them whether to go through with the deal or abandon
it and find another property. This decision will hinge on things like how severe
the damage is and how costly it will be to fix. The buyer may be able to use the
inspection report to have the seller repair the problem items as a condition of the
sale. If this is the case, it is essential to get these promises in writing and
to have a second inspection performed to ensure that all the repairs were made.
A home inspection report can also be a useful tool to lower the asking price of
the home. In the face of a damaging inspection report, the seller may be willing
to lower the price to accommodate the cost of needed repairs. Hence, it is important
that a thorough home inspection be performed on any property you are considering.