Real Estate

The Home Inspection Process

Wed Apr 09, 2008 9:42 am
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The process of purchasing a home, new or resale, is not for the lazy or faint of heart. A home purchase is, for most people, the single largest purchase they will make in their lifetimes.

What Prices To Expect

A part of the buying process that is key to not having any regrets after the fact is the "Home Inspection". An experienced home inspector is worth every penny they will charge. By the way, most home inspections fall in the range of $250-$500 depending on the square footage. Larger homes will be appropriately more than $500.

Home inspectors will most likely be referred by one of the other members of your buying team, Realtor, lender, etc. It is a good policy to ask someone who has just closed on a home, what their experience was with the home inspector they used.

Asking The Right Questions

Do not be timid to interview a few home inspectors and ask for credentials. If they tell you they are not a member of ASHI (American Society of Home Inspectors) then it would be a signal to me that I would probably not use that individual.

The day of the inspection should be coordinated with the seller/builder, yes you can inspect a new home at your cost, and your Realtor should be present.

The inspection of a home typically takes about four hours for a 2500 square foot home. This is an average time. Some homes may be less time and larger homes would be necessarily more time. I suggest you block out the better part of your day to be able to be present.

The Home Inspector will check the roof, crawl space, cellar/basement, electrical, plumbing, etc. There is virtually no part of the home that will not be inspected. Typically on a resale the appliances will be conveyed in an "as is" condition. The home inspector may or may not be able to provide an assessment on condition of appliances.

It is a good idea to follow the home inspector to the extent that you are able and ask questions. It is especially important to do this if the home is your first and you are unsure of how to deal with typical maintenance. "Picking the brain" of your home inspector is a good idea. Just be aware that it may not be possible for you to go into a crawl space.

The Home Inspection Report

After the home inspection is concluded the home inspector will provide a report to you advising the condition of the items identified as needing attention. The Home Inspector may give you a range of time, for example the roof will be good for 7 more years, that something may need to be replaced. If the roof has say 7 years of "life" remaining it does not mean the seller will replace the roof for you.

Once you have the written report, usually computer generated, your Realtor should go over the report with you and identify those items that will be written up on a addendum and presented to the seller, through the sellers Realtor, for correction or credit of monies. Some items may be dealt with by means of a dollar credit at closing. All parties, sellers and buyers, would need to agree to the method of dealing with those items identified as "findings/deficiencies.

Once the home inspection is completed and agreement is reached on any repairs, you will feel more confident that you have made the right decision to purchase that home. It is important to understand that finding items that need to be corrected does not necessarily make the home a poor choice. Homes will always need some type of maintenance.

You will now be ready to move on to the final stages to closing.

Other Articles

Step One:

The Decision to Purchase Property

Step Two:

Attorney and Buyers Agent

Step Three:

Involving a Real Estate Attorney

Step Four:

Find ing a Realtor

Step Five:

Questions Buyers Should Ask


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