If you’re thinking about buying a home, there are lots of important steps you need to take before committing to a house and moving. One of the most important things you can do is have a home inspection. Some people want to save money and skip this step, but it’s a huge risk that could cost you tons more money in the long run. Furthermore, home inspections give you the opportunity to negotiate and sometimes even lower the price of the house, making this step a no brainier. So what can you expect from a home inspection?
The first step is to select a good home inspector. More often than not, your realtor will have recommendations for you. If you don’t have a realtor, or simply want to take matters into your own hands, you can research local home inspectors yourself. Either way, make sure you settle on an established, trustworthy home inspector. It’s always a good idea to ask for references, check qualifications, and get a quote up front.
How much will it cost?
The cost of a home inspection varies depending on the size, age and condition of the house. Different home inspection agencies have different methods of pricing, so it’s always best to clear that up before committing to one home inspector. As a rule of thumb, the older and bigger the house, the higher the cost, as older houses were commonly build to different standards, and the inspector needs to take his time to ensure that any potential issues are identified. Some agencies charge based on size, while others base their pricing on how long the home inspection takes. At McKinley, we pride ourselves on offering affordable inspections and up-front pricing.
What happens during the home inspection?
An home inspection is top-to-bottom analysis of the condition of the home. Home inspectors check the physical structures, electrical systems and mechanical systems. They will check the roof, ceilings, doors, walls, windows, floors, appliances, HVAC system, and plumbing. If there is a basement and/or attic in the house, those will be inspected as well. Home inspectors look for anything problematic that the sellers either haven’t disclosed, or are unaware of. It is not their job assess the value of the house, or comment on whether you are getting a good deal. They are simply there to analyze the general condition of the house. They will take photos and discuss aspects of the house with you (assuming you are present for the inspection). If nothing else, being present for the inspection is a good way to familiarize yourself with the property you’re about to invest in. It is worth noting that home inspectors don’t detect issues from within the walls, such as pest infestations, asbestos, or mold problems. These types of inspections require a more specialized inspection.
Home inspection report
The home inspection report will break down everything the inspector looked at and what their findings were. It’s always a good idea to get a sample report before choosing a home inspector. This will give you a good idea as to what different inspectors will cover. Home inspections are not always cheap, so you want to make sure you’re getting the most out of your money. A good report will include photos, checklists, summaries, and details about the findings. With your completed report, you can then make a more informed decision about how to proceed with the purchasing of the house in question.