What is a home inspection?
A home inspection is to help you from deficiencies or components that are not working properly at the time of inspection.
Why is a home inspection important?
* Reasons for Buyers:
Emotion effects the buyer and later many people regret that they chose not to have an
inspection before or when they first list their home.
* Reasons for Sellers:
More and more sellers are choosing to have a through inspection before or when they first list their home. First and foremost, you should have an inspection for full disclosure. You
will have demonstrated that you did all you could do to reveal any defects within the home.
Second, you will save money and hassle by knowing now what your defects are, not after
you have already negotiated and are faced with $3000.00 in repair discovered on the buyers
inspection. Defects found before the buyer comes along allow you to shop around for a
contractor and not deal with inflated estimates that a buyer will present.
What should I expect from a Home Inspection?
You should expect to know of any visible defects and its components. The home inspector should be capable of recognizing and describing a defective component that was accessible or not working properly and needs troubleshooting by that type of trade professional. He or she should be judgmental in gauging whether or not the component has a problem. Any part of the home that is accessible should be inspected, or stated why it wasn't. That includes crawl spaces and roofs. The inspection report should be easy to read and understand. The inspector should be available to go over the report with you and answer any questions you have. What may be the most important expectation of all is for the inspector to earn your trust, answer your questions, and earn his or her fee.
What should I not expect from a home inspection?
Home inspections are not to protect you against failures of components. Components like air conditioners and heat systems can and will break down. And, when they do break down, the components are unaware of when a home inspector looked at them last. In other words, a home inspection tells you the condition of the component at the time of inspecting the component. A home inspection should cover all the major components in the home, or state what component as not inspected. But a home inspector cannot see inside walls. He cannot inspect a component and predict what day next week or in what year the component will fail or need repairs or replacement.
Does a Home Inspection mean my house meets "Code Compliance" ?
NO, This is one of the biggest misconceptions with home buyers and subcontractors. Some subcontractors such as electricians, plumbers, HVAC and chimney sweeps will invariably come behind home inspectors for service or maintenance. And some will notice that configurations in your home are not up to today's code. Homes built before code revisions are not obligated to comply with the code for homes built today. Home inspectors will report findings when it comes to safety concerns such as ungrounded outlets above sinks. When a repair or replacement is made, a proper permit by the city or county may be required, and an upgrade would be needed to conform. A home inspector thinks "Safety" not "Code" when performing an inspection.
Note: Some cities have adopted "Minimum Safety Inspections" which does require a homeowner within the city limits to comply with their program. The guidelines are more towards safety rather than unnecessary upgrades to today's code. Ask your agent whether or not the home you're buying is required to comply with a city or county safety inspection. If so, Include in your contract that the seller is to provide you a certificate of occupancy stating that the home has complied with the program.