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The 5 Most Common Home Inspection Blunders and How to Avoid Them

One of the most important elements involved in the home buying prospect is the home inspection, allowing you to be sure that your new home is not only safe but also a sound investment. Unfortunately, many home buyers fail to understand the process involved in a home inspection and how to make the most of it.

Understanding the most common mistakes home buyers make when it comes to home inspections and how to avoid them can ensure that your new purchase is really a dream home and not a nightmare. Below are five of the most common mistakes that many home buyers make and some tips to help you overcome them when buying your next new home.

  1. When a buyer purchases a brand new home, there is a common tendency to avoid having an inspection performed because they assume that as the home has passed all local ordinances and codes, there are no worries. This is not always the case. The simple fact is that you cannot always assume that the contractors or the builder did everything correctly even if the home did pass code. The only way you can be sure that your new home is not harboring dangerous and expensive secrets is to have it inspected.

  2. Selecting the right home inspector is more important than you may know. This is a lesson that far too many buyers have learned the hard way. Remember, when you hire an inspector, you are completely trusting him or her to give you an accurate opinion of the safety and value of your largest financial investment. Therefore, it only stands to reason that you should choose someone who is trustworthy, thorough and competent. This is not the time to go with the least expensive home inspection company you can find or someone who was recommended to you. The least expensive option is not always the best option (Read Tips for Choosing a Home Inspector here). Always make certain you take the time to ask about credentials, affiliations, licensing and insurance.

  3. Another common mistake that many buyers make is to assume that they do not need to be present on the day of the inspection. What many buyers fail to realize the written report cannot give them nearly as much information on the condition of the future home than if they are present on the day of the inspection. As a result, it can be hard to truly know how serious a defect may be. When you make the time to be present for the home inspection you have a valuable opportunity to ask questions and obtain a much more thorough idea the condition of the house you are buying.

  4. Unfortunately, buyers do not always take the recommendations of the home inspector seriously enough or follow them. It is important to keep in mind that if you wait until after closing to take action, the problem can turn out to be more serious as well as expensive than you might have anticipated. It is always important to obtain several estimates on any recommended repairs prior to closing. This will give you the opportunity to review the estimates with the home inspector in full and make the best possible decision for any repairs that may be necessary.

  5. Regardless of your home inspector's skills and experience, it should be kept in mind that no inspector is talented enough to be able to see into the future. Just because there are no visible signs of malfunction at the time that the home inspection is performed, that does not mean that something might not still go wrong in the future with one of the home's major systems. The home inspector can only report on what is visible to him or her at the time of the inspection. Understanding this can help you to have a more realistic perception about your home purchase.

Ultimately, it should be kept in mind that your home inspector is one of the few people involved in the home buying process that is completely neutral. He or she has absolutely no stake in the process and is paid to provide you with a completely unbiased opinion as to the condition and value of your home. Taking the time and making the effort to take full advantage of the home inspection will provide you with the best opportunity possible to be certain that you will enjoy your new purchase well into the future and not come to regret it.



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