What's the Deal with Home Inspections?

Dated: September 27 2019

Views: 316

I will try to break this news gently: just as there is no perfect person, there is no perfect house.  OK, that was not too subtle but it is indeed a true statement. Potentially new construction aside, this means that inspections will always uncover items in need of replacement or repair no matter the age of the home.  In many cases, an imperfect home is still worth buying.

You have selected a home inspector (preferably with your agent’s assistance) but you are not quite sure about the scope of the inspection.  I like to compare the role of home inspectors to that of general medical practitioners because they function in much the same way. A general practitioner may examine a patient to see if there are any areas of concern.  If an issue is discovered, these physicians will recommend further investigation and/or testing by recommending the patient to a specialist. An inspector does this with a home by examining the exterior and interior of a property.  Like doctors who update medical records, the inspector writes up a report identifying items that do not meet industry standards and codes. For example, if an inspector notices an issue pertaining to the roof, s/he will suggest that a roofer be called in to assess the situation.  Neither general medical practitioners nor home inspectors specialize in a given area.

Home inspections are conducted in order to determine if there are any material defects.  The challenging part is recognizing which issues are important enough to bring to the attention of the seller.  Consult your realtor for guidance because you may not want to bog the seller down with a list of cosmetic imperfections that can easily be handled by you once you assume ownership of the house.  What’s important enough to make the list you ask? Faulty wiring, missing or inoperable smoke detectors, plumbing issues, and working appliances to name a few. The deck that needs to be sanded down and refinished is something the new owner can handle.  Sellers are more likely to fix the “big ticket” items if the superficial ones are left off the list.

The bottom line: don’t let an imperfect home inspection scare you away from a house that checks off almost all of the must-haves on your list as long as there are no major material defects.

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Camilia Cielo

As cheesy as it may sound, one of Cami's all-time favorite quotes is partially to blame for her decision to become a real estate agent: "The best journey is the one that takes you home." Giving up a n....

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