What exactly constitutes a home inspection, and what does a home inspector look for? A home inspection is not a pass or fail test; it is also not an appraiser inspection to determine property value. It is not a building code inspection to check for compliance.
A home inspection is a visual examination of the physical condition of a building and surrounding property; whether residential or commercial. It is usually performed by experienced, trained property inspection services to determine the condition of a structure and its associated mechanical systems.
Common Points of Inspection
Common things scrutinized on the home inspection checklist include the roof, attic, basement, and foundation inspection; doors, windows, walls, ceilings, and floors. Also, the type, amount, and condition of insulation. HVAC, plumbing, and electrical systems are thoroughly tested and evaluated for any existing or potential problems.
Extended services offered by some home inspection services may include radon testing, well testing, and insect or termite infestation inspection. Usually performed at an additional cost.
Reasons to Have a Home Inspection
There are two main reasons for having a real estate home inspection or a home building inspection performed by a certified home inspector.
Buyers seriously considering a real estate purchase gain an exacting overview of the property and its condition before closing. This aids in formulating an offer, negotiating price, or finalizing the purchase contract.
By having a pre purchase inspection done, the buyer is knowledgeable about both negative and positive aspects of the property so there are no unpleasant surprises later. Property maintenance needs are also made known in advance.
Sellers gain valuable insight from the building inspection that helps them focus on necessary repairs and improvements. By completing these tasks before putting the property on the market, the seller has the advantage of top market price potential. And the peace of mind knowing there will be no hidden flaws or necessary repairs required at the point of sale.
Home Inspection NOT A DIY Task
Home owners or home buyers inclined to do a residential home inspection or property inspection themselves should reconsider. There are far too many variables that require extensive knowledge and experience. Including building construction types and codes, as well as the nearly infinite types of HVAC, plumbing, and electrical systems and their proper installation and maintenance procedure requirements.
Many states require licensing and/or certification for home inspection services, with rigid education and experience requirements. An experienced home inspector has inspected hundreds, perhaps thousands of homes during their career. They will be familiar with every aspect of a structure; how each works together, and what is most likely to fail or need repair.
Questions to ask a home inspector before hiring might include:
- What will be inspected? What parts of the structure will be inspected, what will be included in the inspection report, and when will I receive it?
- How long have you been an inspector; how many inspections have you performed? Ask for a history and references.
- What licensing, certification, and continuing education do you have? Ask to see licensing, certification, and continuing education credentials.
- How long will the inspection take? Be skeptical of any inspector taking less than 3 to 4 hours on a typical single family home. (For large buildings, a real estate inspection service may use a team of inspectors to thoroughly evaluate the structure.)
- What can I expect for home inspection cost? Costs vary greatly from one locality to another. Extended services such as radon or well testing can add significantly to the cost. A typical cost range might be from $400 to $700 for a standard, one family home inspection.
- Do you offer repair or correction services for problems found during the inspection? Many certification associations and state governments strictly prohibit this practice as a conflict of interest.
- Are you experienced in residential inspection, commercial inspection, or both? Each type is unique and has different requirements as to standard points of inspection of the structure and building systems.
- Will I be able to observe the inspection? A professional inspector will welcome homeowner participation, as it is a perfect opportunity to point out both negative and positive findings during the inspection. Be wary of any inspector not allowing you to observe and ask questions.
Finding a Local Home Inspection Pro
To find a local, reliable home inspection company or experienced home inspection service, homeowners all across America are turning to TrustedPros.com
Whether seeking a Denver home inspector, a Tampa home inspector, or even Chicago home inspection services; it has never been easier to find a local service professional, using online resources right from the comfort of home.
Homeowners can sign up absolutely FREE, with no obligation whatsoever. And then post their inspection project online, with easy-to-use tools. Contractor service members view project information and provide competitive bids in days, even hours after posting.
Homeowners can view company profile, licensing, certification, and insurance credentials; critique contractor references, customer feedback, and view photo galleries of recently completed projects. And then make an informed hiring decision, or hire no one at all. Remember, there is no obligation.Posted by: TrustedPros