WHAT'S THE DEAL WITH HOME INSPECTIONS?
The joys of getting your offer accepted on a home can quickly vanish as the nerves and anticipation of a home inspection are looming.
Here's the great news. Your home WILL have something wrong with it. Every home does, it's just a matter of what will be a deal breaker for your situation. Sure, sometimes we find bad roofs and cracks in the foundation, but all items of an inspection are completely negotiable. Not to mention, most items on the inspection are small costs and easily remedied. And if it's too much for you to handle, then you can back out of your contract. Rest easy, I'll walk you through every step of the process.
Here are a few things to keep in mind:
1. WE ALWAYS RECOMMEND THE "BIG 3" OF HOME INSPECTIONS
This includes a Whole House Inspection, Termite Inspection and Radon Test. Depending on the age of the home and items that may surface with the Whole House Inspection, other inspections may be recommended. These can include, Chimney, Sewer, Structural, Roof, Pool and Mold, just to name a few.
2. WHAT DOES A HOME INSPECTION COVER?
According to the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI): The standard home inspector’s report will cover the condition of the home’s heating system; central air conditioning system (temperature permitting); interior plumbing and electrical systems; the roof, attic and visible insulation; walls, ceilings, floors, windows and doors; the foundation, basement and structural components. Each home may vary slightly, so ask the home inspector or your agent to provide a sample report so you can align your expectations.
3. WHAT INSPECTOR DO I CHOOSE?
It's important to choose a home inspector that you feel comfortable with and trust. We have a list of trusted inspectors that we recommend on every transaction. However, ask your friends and family if they have recommendations as well.
4. BUYER'S ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR ALL INSPECTIONS
That's right, you, as a buyer, pay for all inspections you wish to have done on your new home. Keep this in mind when budgeting for purchasing a home. Trust me, this is money well spent!
Be sure to leave yourself sufficient time to hire an inspector and have him out to the property. All contracts have a timeline of allowable time to have inspections done on the property (most are 10 calendar days). It's a good idea to have the inspection done towards the front of that timeline to allow yourself time to bring out a specialist if needed (for a roof quote, scope the sewer line, etc).
5. THE INSPECTOR MUST BE CERTIFIED
A home inspector and a contractor are not the same thing. While a contractor may have know how to fix existing home maintenance problems, home inspectors are specifically trained on how to identify problems, even if they are slight enough to be easily missed by others.
The unifying factor for a sale to be considered legitimate? The home inspection must be done by a certified professional. While qualified home inspectors may cost more than a contractor, you’ll know that you’ve received a complete report.
6. YOU NEED TO ATTEND THE INSPECTION
It's extremely important for you, the buyer, to be at the home while the inspection is going on (your realtor will attend as well). This allows you to ask questions, get clear explanations of issues and request your inspector to check specific issues ("We noticed a stain on the ceiling, what's that from?)
At the end of the inspection, the inspector will walk you through everything they found and answer any questions you may have. Within a day or two, you should get the full PDF report to review with your realtor.
7. ALL INSPECTION ITEMS ARE NEGOTIABLE
As mentioned previously, you can ask the seller's to repair, replace or fork over cash for any of the issues revealed during the inspection. This is not a time to ask for walls to be painted or other cosmetic issues that don't meet your "tastes." We are looking for environmental and safety issues that are a detriment to the home you are buying.
We go through hundreds of inspections a year, so feel confident knowing that your realtor will be able to help navigate you through these issues. It's important for you to keep a level head and not get overwhelmed, however, our main concern is getting you into a house that YOU feel comfortable moving into.
Have any questions? Please feel free to contact me!