Home Inspections Are For the Wise

There are a lot of myths about home inspections out there. People often don’t understand when a home inspection is necessary, who should perform it and how it should be conducted. These misconceptions can cost a buyer a lot of money. Basically, a professional home inspector looks over a home from the foundation to the rafters. He or she prepares a report that gives the condition of all the home’s major components.

However, the inspector will not rip into the walls, take apart any appliances or inspect the swimming pool. The inspector gives the home a close look with a professionally trained eye. Keep in mind that an inspection isn’t the same as an appraisal. The appraisal gives the value of the home, the inspection gives the condition.

The first myth is that a home inspection isn’t required as long as you can see the condition of the property is good. This isn’t true. You should always have your home inspected by a professional inspector, complete with certifications and licenses. You will receive a report that gives the condition of the inspected items. Many reports will include a list of items that need attention and photos of the findings. This is a written report of the home’s condition of the home on the day it was inspected. What is in writing is more important than any spoken claims you get from an agent or seller.

Don’t confuse a termite inspection, electrical inspection or a chimney inspection with a home inspection. These are important, but will not provide a complete picture of the home’s elements. A termite inspection only checks for termites, he won’t check the heating and air units.

General contractors cannot provide home inspections. In fact, many states forbid it, due to the potential for conflict of interest. A general contractor has a good background in becoming a home inspector, but you shouldn’t have your home inspected by anyone who isn’t a licensed home inspector.

The inspection is not a seller’s repair list. While the seller can use the inspection as a repair list, unless it is a contingency in the contract, there is no obligation for repairs. The exception is if the home inspection finds conditions that are require by law to be fixed before the home is sold. The inspection tells you what you are getting for your money. Some people even have inspections performed before signing a purchase agreement — to save time and money. Even if you are buying a home “as-is,” you should have it inspected. While the seller is not responsible for any repairs or improvements, the inspection lets you know what you are getting into. It is better to know before you live in the home.

And finally, new homes should be inspected as well. They should be inspected before the walls are closed in and after the building is complete. A study a few years back revealed that 15% of new homes sell with a serious defect. Other studies indicate that 41% of new homes sell with serious problems, including mold. Thirty-four percent can have structural problems, including missing connections.

Some builders will not allow you an inspection, but you should try your hardest to get it inspected before it is too far along. Many conditions will not show up once the home is complete until it is too late. You should definitely have it inspected by your professional once it is complete.

There is absolutely no reason not to have a home you are purchasing inspected. It protects you and your investment.

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Why a New Home Buyer Should Not Rely on the Former Buyers Home Inspection Report

Not all home buyers end up closing on the home that they put an offer on. Things happen and deals do fall through. This happens for several reasons. The top reasons are financial approval fell through, the seller and buyer got along poorly, the sellers decided not to sell the home, and the condition of the home was worse than the buyer originally thought it was.

Once the home purchase has been cancelled the first home buyers usually look at other homes. The sellers are now left to hope another buyer comes along. The home inspection report is often shared with the real estate agents and the seller. Erroneously this home inspection report is sometimes shared with the new home buyers. This is an error for a couple of reasons.

The first reason is because the second buyer has no contract with the home inspector or the home inspection company. Because there is no agreement/contract if the second buyer has an issue with the home claiming that the home inspector missed a major issue there is zero responsibility for the inspector to take care of them. There was zero legal obligation.

Another reason is that the new home buyer was not present at the inspection and therefore has not idea what conversations the former home buyer and inspector had. This can be vital information. Sometimes in the inspection agreement the buyer request somethings not be inspected so the report is not as whole as the new buyer may believe.

The last reason I am giving here for not relying on the home inspection report created for a previous home buyers has to do with your warranty. To help sell homes agents and sellers will often buy a home warranty for the new home owner. However most home warranty companies will not repair a lot of your issues if you did not have a home inspection completed for you. I spoke with a home warranty rep and they do depend on the home inspection report to determine if items such as your furnace or air conditioner were working when you bought the home. If you do not have your own inspection report to verify that things did operate when you bought the home then you are out of luck and the warranty company will not pay to fix your broken stuff.

If you are buying a home that was previously inspected then you need to have your own inspection done to be protected as fully as possible. If anyone tells you that it is fine to use the previous home inspection report they are wrong. Your are not protected well at all. When Habitation Investigation does a home inspection the client has the ability to get an 18 month warranty for the fee of 12 months. Habitation Investigation also provides warranties such as sewer line protections, 5 year roof leak warranty and 90 day warranty on structural and mechanicals. All those things are there for the home buyer if Habitation Investigation does the inspection for the clients who buy the home.

Jim Troth is the Manager of a multi inspector company, Habitation Investigation, in Ohio and the former Education Coordinator for InterNachi Ohio. He attributes the growth to excellent customer service and referrals from satisfied clients. The company provides inspections in the Central Ohio Columbus area, Hilliard, Powell, Pickerington, Pataskala, Dayton, New Albany, Delaware, Gahanna, Westerville, Galloway, Grove City, Worthington, Dublin, Marysville, London, West Jefferson, Mechanicsburg and other cities surrounding Columbus, Ohio. His home

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