After months of working with your agent, you’ve finally found the house of your dreams. The offer has been accepted, and the loan application made. Congratulations! What’s next? Closing?
One of the most important steps to take when buying a home is the home inspection. Sometimes buyers forego them. I encourage you not to! The home inspection is an excellent opportunity to learn the condition of your new home as well as during the home inspection, you’ll have a few hours to thoroughly check out the home you’re considering buying.
Of course, as a new home buyer, we highly recommend you attend the inspection so you can see firsthand what’s being inspected, ask questions, and learn all there is to know about your soon-to-be new home.
Three Very Important Pre-Home Inspection Questions:
1. What will the inspection cover, and when will I receive your report?
In a home inspection, we’re looking to see systems in the house are safe, and in working order, the roof is free of leaks, and the house is structurally sound. it is not an indictment of the wallpaper or the shag carpeting (could it be argued that those are unsafe from an aesthetic perspective?) … once the inspection is completed, you’ll likely receive the full report within 24 hours, and quite often right on-site
2. Can I see a copy of a report you would prepare after an inspection?
Because of the thoroughness of a good home inspection, a quality home inspection report will be at a minimum of 15 pages and frequently is twice that size. it should detail the systems inspected and their condition at the time of the inspection. pictures are important, as well.
3. How do you stay current on industry standards?
The building industry is constantly changing, with new practices and standards being regularly included. We continue our education annually to stay current with the updates. FYI – while a home inspection isn’t designed to bring a house up to code, a good inspector will inspect it, looking for safety, function, and structure.
Notice I didn’t include “how much does it cost?”. While counting dollars and cents is important in the real estate transaction, the home inspection is not an area to cut corners. Typically an inspection will range from $300-$1,000, and by factoring this cost into your budget – it’s worth every penny.
The questions aren’t done there, though.
Attend your inspection. Ask questions – lots of them. I highly recommend my clients ask questions, and I guarantee you’ll learn a ton. And, if you don’t know what to ask, here’s a list of things to get you started:
- Where is the main water shut-off valve to the house?
- What’s the typical life span of a roof like what’s on this particular home? is there any special maintenance that needs to be done to it?
- What does the attic look like if there’s access to the attic? is this usable space, i.e., a place to store unused boxes and things?
- Is the electrical panel full, or is there room to expand?
- How is the drainage around the house?
Attend the inspection, ask questions and listen. As your home inspector, if you ask a question that I’m not sure about, I will find out so I can make an accurate statement. We were hoping you could participate in the home inspection process, so you’ll be closer to buying the right home for your and your family’s future.