A home is one of the most expensive purchases you’ll ever make. However, the inspector can only report on what they can see.
You may still need to negotiate with the seller to have certain issues fixed or lowered in price. Axios Home Inspection can help you ensure your investment is wise.
Home inspectors look at the basic “envelope” that protects the house from weather and water, so repairing or replacing items such as faulty gutters, loose roof shingles, and caulking around doors and windows is a good idea. Water leaks are a common problem that can cause significant damage if left unchecked. Inspectors will check the plumbing in your home by running faucets, flushing toilets, and testing shower heads and bathtubs. You can help by removing any visible leaking pipes and making sure that all drain traps are in place.
Inspectors will be looking at all the major systems in your home, including electrical, heating, air conditioning, plumbing, and the roof. It’s a good idea to have all invoices, manuals, and warranties for these items available, as well as receipts for any repairs you’ve made. Providing these will make it easier for the inspector to answer any questions the buyer might have, and will give them a sense of confidence in your home’s upkeep.
It’s also a good idea to clear items that may be in the way of the inspector, such as debris and clutter. Having everything in order will give the inspector a better view of your home, and will allow them to get a more thorough inspection. Inspectors will be able to find most things, but having some prep work done can help make the process easier for everyone involved.
If you have pets, be sure to remove them during the home inspection. Inspectors will want to be able to roam freely throughout the property and inspect all areas without interference. If the pet is a large breed, consider crate-restraining them during the inspection. Inspectors will test all the safety features of your home, including smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors. If yours are outdated or not functioning properly, it’s a good idea to have them replaced prior to the inspection.
It’s a good idea to have an exterminator treat the property for pests, especially termites and carpenter ants, before your home inspection. If a buyer discovers these problems during the due diligence period, they can ask for a price reduction, ask the seller to make repairs, or even back out of the deal entirely.
Home inspectors use their training and experience to evaluate the condition of a house. They look for a wide range of issues that can affect the safety and health of occupants. They examine the structure and its components, from the roof to the foundation. They are also looking at how these elements interact with each other.
The home inspection process is a vital step for both buyers and sellers. For buyers, it gives them the opportunity to uncover problems before making a purchase and negotiate with the seller for repairs. Home inspectors can also help buyers understand the cost of necessary repairs and maintenance to a new property so they can plan accordingly.
A buyer may hire a home inspector before they sign a contract to buy a property, but usually only after the contract has been accepted by the seller. The contract should include an inspection contingency that gives the buyer time to find an inspector, schedule an inspection, and receive a report.
When choosing a home inspector, be sure to get recommendations from other professionals in the real estate industry. However, don’t be afraid to shop around and ask for prices. Getting several quotes will give you a good idea of what the market is like for this service and how much you should expect to pay.
Before the inspection, a homeowner should prepare the house as best they can. This includes cleaning up the yard and removing any items that could hinder the inspector’s work. It is also a good idea to make any repairs that are needed. If the home inspector finds major issues, such as a leaking roof or electrical hazards, the buyer can choose to walk away from the deal or ask the seller to fix these issues before closing.
A home inspection can also reveal less serious issues that a buyer might not be aware of. For example, a sagging roof might not be a major problem, but it can cause structural damage and lead to leaks. A home inspection can also identify a hidden mold problem that would otherwise be missed.
A home inspection produces a detailed report about the condition of a house. It typically includes a summary page that reviews all major issues and areas of concern, but it’s important to read the entire report to get an accurate picture of the home’s condition. A home inspector may also include photos of damaged or problematic items in the report.
It’s important for buyers to understand what goes into a home inspection report so that they can make informed decisions about whether or not to move forward with the purchase. Depending on the results of the inspection, buyers can decide to proceed with the sale, schedule additional inspections, renegotiate the price with the seller, or ask for certain repairs to be made.
Home inspection reports are extensive and contain checklists, summaries, notes, and photographs. They may also include estimates of the remaining life of major systems and equipment, as well as a list of recommended repairs. A typical home inspector’s report will cover the following areas:
Interior rooms: Inspectors will check whether ceilings are stained or leaking, and they’ll look for leaning walls, which might be a sign of faulty framing. They’ll also inspect the kitchen for range hood venting, and electrical outlets that are too close to sinks and verify that cabinet doors open properly. The bathroom is another area of focus, with the inspector checking to ensure that showers spray water and toilets flush. Inspectors will also examine the condition of the basement and foundation.
Exterior: Inspecting the outside of a home can be a challenging job. Inspectors will look for damage such as cracking stucco or masonry; water stains or leaks; and improper clearance between the siding and the earth, which can cause soil erosion. They’ll also check the roof, gutters, and chimneys.
Some items aren’t included in a standard home inspection, including swimming pools, well and septic systems, mold, pests, and asbestos. These issues require specialized inspections and should be addressed by a specialist. The buyer can request these specialized inspections at the time of the home inspection, or they can hire their own inspector to perform them for an additional fee.
Home inspections can reveal problems that may be costly for buyers to repair. In some cases, these issues are deal breakers and can cause a potential sale to fall through. However, it’s important to know how to negotiate with the seller to get these repairs taken care of in a reasonable time frame. The best way to do this is to have a real estate agent put together a revised offer or consult with a contractor for estimates.
Before you start the negotiation process, it’s important to understand what is reasonable and what is not. A good rule of thumb is to not ask for more than what you would expect to pay for the repairs on your own if the problem was discovered after you bought the home.
Also, consider the scope of the problem and whether it’s something that could be addressed with a credit at closing rather than a price reduction for the whole home. For example, some minor damage is caused by age or wear and tear that you could easily address yourself during renovations. It’s best to avoid asking for unreasonable requests that could upset or stall the sales process.
The seller isn’t legally required to make any repairs that come up in the home inspection report, but most will do what they can to avoid losing a buyer. This is especially true if the problem is a safety issue, structural damage, or a building code violation.
If a problem does come up that can’t be resolved, you have the option to withdraw your offer from the contract or request a reduction in the sales price. However, it’s usually not in either party’s interest to do this unless it’s a state-mandated nonnegotiable condition.