The idea of a home inspection can be worrisome – at least for some people. Some think this way because they have no idea what happens during the home inspection, while others think it’s a deal killer. For some reason, a home inspection may cause anxiety to both buyer and seller, but looking at the bigger picture is beneficial for both. So whether you are a buyer or a seller, realize there’s no such thing as a perfect home. The home inspection provides you with the knowledge you need to know about the home via a comprehensive inspection report of the property.
A home inspection is not a Pass/Fail examination but a service performed to see what issues there are with the home. More than likely, the home inspection report will show some concerns with the home, whether it is minor or costly. But to further understand what home inspectors look for, read on to know the essential points about this vital part of the real estate transaction.
What’s Included In The Home Inspection?
A home inspection is a non-invasive visual examination of the home that can run between 2 to 5 hours depending on the size, age, and condition of the home. The home inspector will look at the structural, safety, and function of the home including the foundation, basement, crawlspace, roof, siding, deck, porch, patio, garage, walls, doors, ceiling, and major systems including electrical, plumbing, and the HVAC system. The goal of a home inspection is to look for and report on the current conditions of the home. Usually, within 24 hours following the home inspection, you will receive a comprehensive, full-color, narrative report to inform you of any issues as well as recommendations.
Major Issues Found
There are several major issues that home inspectors are focused on. These issues are some of the most expensive and labor-intensive fixes and one that could pose threats to health and safety, as well as the overall function of the home.
When water accumulates, it can cause a host of issues that are red flags for the buyers. Water in the basement can be a sign of structural damage, an undetected roof leak, or a plumbing leak. Indications can be stains on the ceiling or walls, a musty smell as well as mold growing in a damp area. This can make for a toxic home environment.
Visible signs that the home’s structural integrity is compromised include cracks in basement walls and door frames, uneven floors, cracks and gaps between walls and floors, nails that pop out of the walls, and gaps around window and door frames.
When it’s safe, most home inspectors will walk the roof to look for any roof issues. Others use drones to handle this task. Common roof issues include loose or missing shingles, nail pops, excessive algae growth, soft spots, cracks, rust or missing flashing, and an indication of moisture in the attic.
Problems With The Electrical
Improper electrical distribution remains one of the leading causes of fire. Because of this, home inspectors are focused on determining the conditions of the electrical conditions in the home. Exposed wiring, painted outlets, double-tapping of circuit breakers, and improperly modified electrical panels are among many electrical hazards home inspectors find.
Running toilets, hidden water leaks, sediment buildup, high water pressure, and broken or rusty pipes are some of the plumbing issues that when left unattended, could cost thousands of dollars to fix.
Remember, there’s no such thing as a perfect home so don’t be overwhelmed if you receive a lengthy home inspection report. Focus more on the summary of the issues and discuss with your agent how to move forward with the purchase. The main goal of a home inspection is to give you the knowledge you need to make an informed buying decision. A home inspection is a crucial and significant step in the home-buying process.