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There is the obvious general home inspection that we strongly recommend you get from a licensed and experienced home inspector who has a track record of quality home inspections. You can also have other inspections done as part of the home buying process.
We always insist a general home inspection should be done with any purchase. They will generally run from $250 to $400 for most homes. Luxury and specialty properties can go beyond a standard inspection. Usually there are no requirements to have an inspection by a lender but this is your one chance to get the home thoroughly looked at. The general inspection includes the roof, heating and air-conditioning, plumbing, electrical and the overall condition of the home. Many times an inspection will find something that the seller was not even aware of and it also affords you the opportunity to verify anything on the seller’s property disclosure.
In the event the inspection yields an issue that goes beyond their scope of work, they may recommend calling in a specialist. This would be the case in the even the air-conditioning is not performing as it should. They would recommend having the unit serviced or looked at further.
Even if you are buying a home “as-is,” the contract should include an inspection. “As-is” does not mean the seller can hide known defects. If just means they do not warrant the condition of the property. “As-is” may also be used if the seller never lived in the home such is the case with foreclosures or rental property.
We recommend that if permissible, you be at the inspection for part if not all of it. It’s a great opportunity for you to ask questions and possibly have things explained to you about the home which may not be part of any home inspection report. There can be more to an inspection than just a report that you might find helpful.
Inspectors generally have a multi-page check list of items to look at. They usually develop a consistent method or manner to go through the property. This is to make sure they go through the home and don’t miss anything. At the end of the inspection, you can expect to receive a multi page report going over the items checked along with any issues the inspector found.
If your contract has an amount in the repair limit and the covered repairs are below this amount, the seller will fix these. We will need to provide a copy of the inspection report to the seller and indicate which items we want fixed. Repairs need to be done professionally and in a “workman-like” manner. Significant items where a licensed would be required need to be done by licensed people. You should expect to receive a copy of the receipt so that in the even there are issues after you take possession, you have someone to call to make the work right.
We need to give the seller ample time to address any of the appropriate issues found. If for any reason we need to cancel a contract because the seller does not wish to pay for repairs beyond the contract limits, we want to know this as quickly as possible. This is to prevent expenses like an appraisal, survey, or title search to being incurred should the contract need to be cancelled. Even if repairs go beyond the limit in the contract, and you still wish to proceed, a home inspection would not automatically cancel the contract. It only gives you the “option” to cancel in the event the seller does not want to do the repairs.
Other common inspections:
If you home has a pool, you can ask to have this inspection done by the home inspector for a small additional fee. Other inspection that can be done at this time are things like looking at the seawall,a 4 point inspection or a wind mitigation inspection.
Inspections not part of the General Home Inspection
Other inspections that a general home inspection would not cover include a wood destroying organism report (called “The Termite Report”), a well and septic inspection, the radon report, or any other inspection that may be important that might effect your desire to close the transaction.