A home inspection is a limited, non-invasive examination of the condition of a home, often in connection with the sale of that home. Home inspections are usually conducted by a home inspector who has the training and certifications to perform such inspections.
The standard home inspector’s report will cover the condition of the home’s heating system; central air conditioning system (temperature permitting); interior plumbing and electrical systems; the roof, attic and visible insulation; walls, ceilings, floors, windows and doors; and the foundation, basement and structural components.
A home inspection is money well spent if it helps you avoid potential disasters after closing. Your inspection will include a thorough review of the home’s structural elements and electrical, plumbing, heating and cooling systems. The inspector’s report gives you the information you need to decide to buy the home as-is or to negotiate with the seller to fix the problems or reduce the price.
Inspections can take anywhere from 1 1/2 hours to 4 hours, depending on size of property, complexity, etc.
Many homebuyers are led to believe that the county or municipality inspection and the final walk-through with the builder’s representative is an adequate way to inspect a home. Most county or municipality inspectors spend no more than 30 minutes at a home site. The builder’s final walk-through inspection is very unlikely to disclose any problems with the home they built as some repairs can prove to be expensive. A certified ASHI home inspector will spend 2-3 hours during a typical inspection and could save thousands of dollars in repairs later on. Homeowners will have to correct defects that were present at the time of construction when they sell their homes in the future.
Home inspections run between $300 and $450 depending on size, age and distance of home.
Even the most experienced homeowner lacks the knowledge and expertise of a professional home inspector who has inspected hundreds, perhaps thousands, of homes in his or her career. An inspector is familiar with the many elements of home construction, their proper installation, and maintenance. He or she understands how the home’s systems and components are intended to function together, as well as how and why they fail.
No house is perfect. If the inspector identifies problems, it doesn’t necessarily mean you shouldn’t buy the house, only that you will know in advance what to expect. A seller may adjust the purchase price or make repairs if major problems are found. If your budget is tight, or if you don’t wish to become involved in future repair work, this information will be very important to you.
NO. A professional home inspection is an examination of the current condition of your prospective home. It is not an appraisal, which determines market value, or a municipal inspection, which verifies local code compliance. A home inspector, therefore, will not pass or fail a house, but rather describe its physical condition and indicate what may need major repair or replacement.
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