Frequently Asked Questions
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A home inspection is an objective visual examination of the physical structure and systems of a home, from the roof to the foundation. Having a home inspection is like giving it a physical. If problems or symptoms are found, the inspector may recommend further evaluation. Hiring a professional home inspector can help you find out as much as possible about a home before you sign on the dotted line. Choose an experienced, full-time inspector, not a renovator or contractor with an inspection business on the side.
The standard home inspector's report will review the condition of the home's heating system, central air conditioning system, interior plumbing and electrical systems; the roof, attic and visible insulation; walls, ceilings, floors, doors and windows; the foundation, basement or crawl space and visible structures.
The purchase of a home is probably the largest single investment you will ever make. As such, you should learn as much as you can about the home before you buy, so that you aren't hit with any unexpected repairs or difficulty after the home is yours. In addition, the home inspection may note positive aspects of the home, as well as maintenance required to keep your home in good shape. The inspection also helps you to get a much better understanding of the property than you could get on your own.
The cost of a home inspection varies based upon a number of factors, including size, age, special services requested, etc. Please contact me with as much information as possible about the property, and I will be happy to provide you a no-obligation fee and scheduling estimate!
A word of advice... cost should not be a primary factor in deciding whether or not you get your home inspected or in determining which home inspector you choose. Experience, backgrounds, and knowledge of individual inspection companies vary significantly. It is more important that you consider the true qualifications of an inspector over a perceived low-cost service. A quality and detailed home inspection as an investment that will pay for itself many times over. As with most things, cheaper is not always better. The bitterness of poor quality lingers long after the sweetness of low cost is forgotten.
No house is perfect.
This needs repeating, NO HOUSE IS PERFECT.
If there are problems, it doesn't mean that you shouldn't buy the house. Every home has some amount of maintenance issues and minor defects that we will notify you about. Don't sweat the small stuff. We include the small things in your report to help you maintain the home, and prevent them from becoming major issues down the road. However, if there are major problems, you likely will want to go back to the seller to either get the problems corrected or to negotiate the contract price to reflect the inspector's findings. I tell my clients that EVERYTHING discovered through a home inspection can be fixed! It merely depends on who's dime it's going to be on! It's unrealistic to expect a perfect and flawless house.
No. A house neither passes nor fails inspection. In fact, a house receives no grade at all. A home inspection is not the same as a code inspection. While the inspector will be familiar with the local building codes, his or her objectives are to describe the physical condition of the house and indicate what may need repair or replacement. The information contained in the inspection report is provided for you the client to make an educated purchase decision, not as a pass/fail analysis.
Even the most savvy do-it-yourselfer will not have the level of training, knowledge, and expertise as a professional home inspector who has looked at thousands, of homes in his or her career. An inspector is familiar with the complex elements of home construction, understands how the home's systems are intended to function, as well as how and why they fail. Most importantly, the inspector is a disinterested third party that can be totally objective about the condition of the home.
An inspection of a new property is important to help you spot any shortcuts the contractor or builder may have taken. A trained home inspector will be able to spot certain tell-tale signs that might otherwise go unnoticed to an untrained eye. Especially valuable is an inspection before the drywall is put up. This gives you the chance to identify and fix problems when they are much easier to spot and repair.
Consider a complete home inspection. This is the time to "speak now or forever hold your peace". An unbiased evaluation of your home by a certified home inspector is a great way to bring an impartial opinion into the mix. A complete home inspection will help you to create an itemized list of issues and concerns that should be addressed by the builder. A home inspector will be aware of issues that may have been overlooked during construction and which should be corrected by the builder.
A quality inspection should not be rushed by you, an inspector, other parties, or any real estate agent. A complete and thorough home inspection will typically last between 3 to 4 hours depending on size and age of the home. Less thorough inspectors are often finished in 45 minutes to 2 hours regardless of size. A thorough home inspection includes full evaluation of all accessible components of the home, and therefore will require a greater amount of time. The larger or older the home, the more time will likely be required for inspection; however, some small homes with lots of discovered issues can require as much time as larger ones.
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Give me a call or shoot me an email with as much information as possible about your potential new home. I will be happy to provide you a no-obligation fee and scheduling estimate!