Finally found the perfect home? That’s great – but before you get too excited about your future property, you’re going to want to get it inspected. It may have seemed fine when you walked through it. But there may be some underlying issues that only a home inspector can find.
The home inspection is essentially a physical for your house. It’s an assessment of the home’s condition, and typically covers the property’s roof, foundation, heating and cooling systems, plumbing, electrical work, and more. It could possibly end up saving you thousands in the long run, which is why it’s critical to avoid these common pitfalls.
1. Not researching your inspector
This inspection can be the difference in finding a thousand-dollar issue before you sign any papers or getting stuck with it. So it’s important to research your home inspector before hiring them. This can get a bit tricky though, as not every state requires inspectors to be licensed.
If your state does require licensing, ask for their license number and call the licensing board. You’ll learn if they’re current with educational requirements and other important information. If your state doesn’t require licensing, you can search databases of professional associations, or ask for recommendations from friends and colleagues.
But no matter what your situation is, give the home inspector a mini interview before agreeing to an inspection. Ask them about their experience, credentials, and for some references.
2. Not attending the inspection
This could be a costly mistake. Sure, your inspector will write a detailed report. But it will be much easier to understand the inspector’s findings in person than by reading a report. They can walk you through their findings and explain everything – so you know what’s a red flag and what’s a simple repair. Plus, you can ask them questions if you don’t understand something.
3. Not reviewing your inspection report
You just paid a few hundred dollars to get this report. So why would you not read it?
The home inspection report is filled with valuable information, and can show you things such as if the chimney needs to be repaired, what kind of condition the roof is in, etc. It will help you understand what may need to be fixed and how much you’ll end up paying. Not reading it in great detail could mean missing big issues you didn’t realize the home had.
You may also want to consider making a list of things you don’t understand on the report and asking your inspector to explain in greater detail. Ask them as soon as possible though so they’re still fresh in the inspector’s head.
4. Getting stuck on the little things
After your home inspection, you may ask the seller to fix some things. However, be reasonable with your request. If you have a long list of small, tedious fixes that you could easily do, the seller may revoke their offer. Speak with your agent and the inspector on reasonable fixes the seller can make, and go from there.
Be sure to avoid these beginner mistakes when it comes time to inspect your future home. It can save you money and time in the long run. Also, it’s important to note that a home inspection is not the same as a home appraisal, so these tips won’t apply. However, if you’re having a home appraisal done, follow these tips.