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Are Home Inspections Really Worth The Cost?


Many home buyers wonder whether or not home inspections are really worth the cost.  We get this question quite a lot, especially from buyers who are trying to save as much money as possible.  After all, a home purchase is an expensive proposition, so you don’t want to spend extra money that you don’t need to spend.  However, it’s critical to understand that a home inspection is a vital part of making sure that you don’t lose money when purchasing a property.

What is involved in a home inspection?

A home inspection is simply a complete evaluation of the interior and exterior of the home.  A good home inspector will look at a variety of different components throughout the house including roofing, siding, foundation, electrical, plumbing and the HVAC system.  Some home inspectors may have more experience in certain areas, so it’s important to find out if your inspector can look at all of these vital components of the home.

Why do I need a home inspection?

The idea behind getting an inspection is to find major defects that would prevent you from wanting to purchase the home or would be an unexpected expense.  The unfortunate truth is that many buyers who don’t get home inspections end up having to spend thousands of extra dollars they weren’t expecting when they uncover an issue in the home once they move in.

The better idea would be to find out these issues up front so that you can negotiate with the seller if anything needs to be replaced or repaired.  There is no reason that homebuyers should move into a property only to find out that there were hidden issues that now need to be repaired. Often, you can get a price reduction from the seller to cover the cost of the repairs after closing.

Remember that we are not talking about new homes in this situation.  These are resell properties that someone has lived in, so there are bound to be minor issues that come up in every home.  You might even be looking at a foreclosure property which has been sitting vacant for quite some time.  These kinds of homes especially need inspections to be done.

The home inspector will be looking for major issues only, so take that into consideration.  This really isn’t the time to be asking for cosmetic or minor repairs to be done.

How much does a home inspection costs?

The cost can vary depending upon the size, condition and year the home was built.  It can also be different depending upon the kind of inspector that you’re using.  Generally speaking, the range for a home inspection is about $300-$800.

Should I be present at the home inspection?  

As a home buyer, it’s very important for you to be present when the home inspection is being done.  It will usually take about 2 to 3 hours to have a thorough home inspection.  The reason why you want to be there is so that the inspector can show you things about the property that you may not have otherwise known.  For instance, they can explain how to light the burner and where your main water shut off is. They can also give you tips and tricks about maintaining your home over time.

How do I find a good home inspector?

There are many different ways to find a home inspector including searching Google, looking in the phone book and asking for referrals from your family and friends who may have recently purchased a home.  Of course, one of the best ways is to ask us since we have worked with many different home inspectors over the years.

At the very least, we recommend that you get a home inspector who is ASHI certified.  This means that they belong to the American Society of Home Inspectors.  In order to be a member of ASHI, inspectors have to maintain a minimum level of continuing education to keep up with the trends in home repair.

To get more information on finding the right home inspector for your needs, contact us today!

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