Home Inspections

Home Inspections Made Easy!

Buying a home isn’t as easy as finding a house you love and striking a deal with the seller. There is a whole process that must be followed so that there are as few problems as possible for all parties involved.

Once you have secured your down payment, gotten pre-approved or pre-qualified, made an offer, and secured a mortgage, it is time for the home inspection. The inspection is done before you can close on your new home so that you know exactly what you are buying.

What Does the Inspection Include?

The inspector will check the foundation, roof, walls, electrical system, plumbing, and visible insulation and look for signs of pests, mold, and asbestos. The purpose of the pre-purchase home inspection is to disclose any defects in the property that could affect its livability, safety, or resale value. It is not meant to report on cosmetic defects.

How to I Find an Inspector?

Your real estate agent can recommend a home inspector or you can ask friends and colleagues for referrals. A qualified home inspector should have a general knowledge of real estate, a working knowledge of residential structures, and an affiliation with a strong and ethical organization such as the American Society of Home Inspectors. When you are looking for an inspector, you’ll want to find someone who has experience and specializes in home inspections. Find out what type of report you will receive. You will also want to check to see if he or she has Errors and Omissions Insurance. This will protect you if the inspector misses something during the inspection.

How Much Does an Inspection Cost?

The cost of the inspection depends on the inspector, the property, the size of the home, and the scope of the inspection and reporting; it can be several hundred dollars. The buyer can cover the cost or it can be negotiated with the seller. It is a good idea to get estimates from prospective inspectors before you select one to do the inspection.

When Should the Inspection be Done?

You will want to complete the home inspection as fast as possible. The inspection typically happens one to two weeks after the contract is accepted. Be sure to find your home inspector during that waiting period or you run the risk of running past the inspection deadline.

Do I Have to Be Present for the Inspection?

You will want to be there when the inspection is done so that you can gain better insight as to the home’s condition. You are encouraged to ask questions so you can be fully confident in your decision to buy. Make sure you get a detailed written report from your inspector.

How Long Does the Inspection Take?

The length of the inspection is determined by the size of the home and number of rooms. The average inspection takes 2 – 2 ½ hours (1 – 1 ½ hours for a condo).

Will the Inspector Discuss Only the Defects?

No. A comprehensive inspection should highlight the home’s positive aspects as well as identifying any problem areas.

What If the Inspection Reveals Problems?

If the inspection finds problems with the home, you will want to find out how much it would cost to fix them. If there is time, get cost estimates from licensed contractors. Weigh the positives against the negatives and if you decide to proceed with the purchase, you can negotiate the cost with the seller. Defects like pest infestation or structural problems are historically the responsibility with the seller. You can also offer to fix the problems yourself and negotiate a lower purchase price on the contract. Every deal is different and negotiable.

Once the inspection is done and the fixes have been discussed, your closing date will be just around the corner — and you’ll be ready to move into your new home!

Are you still at the beginning of the home buying process? Connect with a knowledgeable mortgage broker at Home Reliance Capital. We’ll help you get the financing that is right for you and your budget.