If you are buying a resale home and don’t want to inherit the sellers headaches, a home inspection by a professional should be given serious consideration. If a home inspection is ordered, your offer to purchase is usually conditional on you being satisfied with the inspection so that if the inspection is not satisfactory, there is no deal. Today, more and more purchasers are coming to understand the wisdom of a thorough home inspection prior to committing to its purchase.
There are several ways to find a professional home inspector in your area. For example, you can:
• Ask your real estate agent for names – this is probably the best way as your realtor will have a list of tried and tested professionals that have been previously used. • Ask friends and family who have used a home inspector in the past . • Contact a home inspection association for a list of qualified inspectors in your area . • Go online to association Web sites – a very popular way as you can read reviews, both good and bad. • Check the local phone directory. • Ask someone in the construction or housing industry • Contact your local real estate board for references
Once you have found a home inspector, you have to ask the following important questions:
• Ask if they belong to a professionally recognized organization. • Ask about their training-they should have taken courses related to this field. • Verify that they are full-time inspectors with significant experience (versus performing inspections to supplement other fields of business). • Ask for references with contact details. Make sure you call at least 3 references to see if they were satisfied. • Use only inspectors who will give you a written report of their findings. • Ask how much time the inspection will take and how much it will cost. A thorough inspection should last at least three hours, depending on the size of the property. • Ask about their limitation of liability agreement. This will let you know what they are and are not liable for if something was missed or an oversight occurred.
What is inspected?
• Foundation walls, basement floor, posts and beams • Waterproofing, moisture penetration, wood rot, etc. • Electrical service and wiring • Plumbing supply, waste drainage and fixtures • Heating, air conditioning (summer only) and ventilation • Floors, walls, ceilings, doors and windows • Attic insulation and ventilation
• Slope, grading and drainage of the property • Foundation and exterior walls • Porches and decks • Windows, doors, headers and sills • Fascia, soffits and eaves troughs • Roof, flashings, vents and chimneys • Garage, carport and outbuildings
Remember that a professional home inspection does not include appraisals, exact quotations for repairs, noncompliance with building code requirements, and is not intended to provide guarantees or warranties. Knowing what to expect will help you make an informed decision about the value of your home as well as the costs of future upkeep.
If you are contemplating buying or selling a home, why not get in touch with us for some useful advice? Call us on 604 913 1000, contact us by email or follow us on Facebook.