Having a home inspection is an important step in buying a home. I know some people will tell you it’s optional, but I don’t suggest skipping this step! Spending money to hire a home inspector protects you from costly concerns down the road. Here are seven important things a good home inspector will do during an inspection.
- Exterior walls and foundation – Your inspector will check for missing or damaged siding and cracks in both the foundation and the outside walls. This is important because foundation concerns can be costly. Note that foundation and siding repairs are popular items negotiated into contracts.
- Insulation and ventilation – Your inspector will examine the insulation in the crawl space and attic and ensure that vent fans are working properly. He or she will note the condition and the quantity of the insulation. Making sure your home is properly insulated will save you bundles on future utility bills.
- Garage – Garages require proper ventilation to prevent potential carbon monoxide hazards from exhaust. In addition to this, your inspector will check the garage framing to make sure it’s structurally sound and operate the door to make sure it functions properly. The water heater may be located in the garage, as well, and your inspector will thoroughly check this, too.
- Plumbing system – Water leaks are no fun, so your inspector will check your plumbing system thoroughly. You should hear about any visible leaks under sinks, in faucets or in showers. With older homes, the inspector may look closely to determine what material the pipes are made of and report on their current condition. Plumbing requirements change frequently, and while older homes can’t be required to be brought up to code, in some situations it’s not unreasonable to ask for improvements.
- Electrical system – Your inspector will determine the type of wiring in your prospective home and check all outlets for power. He or she will test the ground fault interrupters in areas like the garage, kitchen, bathroom, outdoors and anywhere else where water may be present. You will want these outlets in particular to be functioning well, as they protect you from electrocution! Your inspector will ensure your electrical system poses no fire hazards and is in good, solid condition.
- Roof – Your inspector will thoroughly check the condition of your home’s roof. The inspector will examine shingles, inspect the gutters and check the flashing around the chimney. If shingles are missing, installed improperly or even loose, you could experience water damage, which can be a costly fix.
- HVAC condition – Your inspector can estimate the age of your HVAC unit or furnace and give a report on the condition. He or she can recommend repairs and even offer some education on maintenance.
You want to find problems before you buy, and your home inspector is your key. If you do find major problems during the inspection, you should be able to change your offer or walk away without penalty. It’s easy to see why home inspections are so important and why we love a good inspector!
Some people don’t know how to find a good home inspector. This is something I can help with, since I’ve worked with many. I can refer you to someone trustworthy. It’s one of the things I do as a value added service to my clients. From staging to selling and inspecting to buying, I’ve got you covered! Give me a call to start your home-buying adventure today!