Home Inspections

Congratulations! You’ve made an offer, and reviewed all the documents the seller has provided regarding the condition of the home. But, you have one important step before you finalize your real estate offer, one that could help to avoid a costly home buying mistake. Hire a professional home inspector to give the house a standard inspection that includes:

  • room-by-room review
  • exterior home components
  • electrical systems
  • foundation and structural components-both interior and exterior
  • heating/air conditioning systems
  • plumbing systems
  • attic/basement/crawl spaces

Once you have arranged for a home inspection, plan to accompany the inspector for the entire procedure. You have the right to be there, and leading home inspection companies will encourage your presence. It helps you to better understand the findings in the report and will reduce post-closing hassles. Don’t forget your list of questions and items of concern.

A thorough home inspection covers more than 1,000 items, everything from the foundation to roof and takes four to six hours depending on the size of the property. The report should reflect the condition of about 400 items. A typical inspection costs $200-$400 and takes about four hours.

Some common items a home inspection could uncover are:

  • maintenance problems such as rotting decks, paint chips, water damaged ceilings, etc.
  • electrical problems (even faulty fuses can lead to bigger difficulties in the future)
  • structural damage caused by water seepage into the foundation, floor joists, and door headers that should be discovered at the source can easily be identified with a home inspection
  • drainage problems; these could include water intrusions below the home
  • roof leaks and defects from aging
  • poor ventilation, especially in an attic; this is the time to assure that all vents are clean and working properly
  • excess air leakage due to poor weather stripping and subpar caulking around fixtures
  • failed window seals, which are routinely found with dual pane windows
  • faulty lines in water heaters, overflow piping, and/or hazardous flue conditions