Home Inspection Tips for Home Buyers
• Why you should have a home inspection:
A home inspection provides you with information about the home to help determine your financial investment risk. The inspector reports on the condition of visible and accessible systems and components of the home. A home inspection is not a home warranty nor does it guarantee that hidden issues do not exist. The inspector will identify structural concerns, defects, maintenance items and more. Regardless of whether your offer is contingent on a home inspection or how you are a financing, do not skip this important step. 99% of my home inspections have provided value greater than that which was paid, for example, the home inspection costs $500. The inspector finds the home has a plumbing leak and damages cost upward of $5,000. The seller and buyer were unaware of the leak and the buyer negotiates to have the seller perform repairs prior to purchasing. Additional money was also saved from potential additional costs in damages if the leak continued undetected.
• How to find an Inspector:
Many clients call asking for a price quote and say they are shopping around. First thing, going this route is only a disservice to yourself. As with anything in life, you get what you pay for. Likely, going with the cheapest inspector is going to end up costing you in the long run, these inspectors are often less experienced or perform only the minimum as required by the state. Many inspectors offer significant increase in value for not much more cost.
Read online reviews, visit inspectors websites and choose the company that is right for you and your purchase, the price differences of $50-100 is nothing when spending hundreds of thousands of dollars.
• Questions to ask when calling an inspector.:
1. How long does it take to receive the report?
2. Do you cover appliances and maintenance items?
3. Is the report digital and do you include lots of photos?
4. Do you include thermal imaging (infrared) and is there an added cost?
5. Do you have liability and E&O insurance?
6. Do you perform a walk through review at the completion of the inspection (to me this is one of the most important and valuable steps in the process)?
• How much will it cost?
Pricing varies from inspector to inspector however, expect to pay between $425-600 for a single family home and between $325-$450 for a townhouses or condo. Prices often vary by size and age so having the information when calling is important.
• How long will it take?
The inspection process typically takes 2-3 hours for a single family home. When scheduling, be sure to ask the inspector when you should arrive. Usually, arriving at the end of the inspection is recommended. This is the time you will review the findings, walk the property together, talk about future maintenance needs and the inspector will answer any questions you may have. This generally takes an 30 minutes to an hour. Total time at the home is about 2-4 hours.
• What should I receive from the inspector?
* Comfort * Trust * Honesty *
A report should be delivered, ideally within 24 hours. Most often this is sent via e-mail as a web based link or PDF which can then be saved and/or printed. The inspector should also provide you with their contact information for any future home questions or referrals to reputable contractors. A receipt is also often required for your lender and is usually delivered with the report. The inspector should be there for you in the future and be your “go to” for home related questions. When you hire an inspector, don’t think of it as a one- time service, your investing in a lifetime of guidance and support for you and your family.
Adam Morvee - WA Lic#1266 Ground Up Inspection Service Bellingham, Washington / www.Groundupinspection.com / 360-927-1723 / firstname.lastname@example.org