Home Inspections 101: What The Buyer Needs to Know

Home Inspection Report

Your home is likely one of the biggest purchases you’ll ever make, and a home inspection is an important part of making sure it’s a wise investment. But what is a home inspection? When does it happen? And what happens next? We’ll walk you through the process so it’s smooth and easy.

What is a Home Inspection?

In the process of closing on a new home, the buyer typically arranges for a home inspection. The inspector you hire will come to the house and perform a visual check, identifying key health and safety issues. A home inspection is an important opportunity for an expert to walk through your potential home and create a report that outlines the home’s major components, their current condition, what needs immediate repairs, and what may require maintenance soon after you move in. 

Pro-Tip: It’s a good idea to choose an inspector early on in the home-buying process so that you can be ready to schedule your inspection as soon as the seller accepts your offer. 

When Does a Home Inspection Happen?

Technically, there are two types of home inspections: a seller’s inspection (also called a pre-listing inspection), which the seller can choose to complete before the home is on the market, and a buyer’s inspection. A buyer’s inspection occurs after the buyer has made an offer on the home, but before closing. After receiving the inspection results, the buyer may want to adjust their offer, request repairs, or renegotiate based on issues that are discovered.

What Happens During a Home Inspection?

For the average house, a typical home inspection will likely take a few hours. After the inspection, you should expect to receive the report in another few days. The inspector will walk through both the interior and the exterior of the house to take note of any safety issues or hazards in and around the home. 

Pro-Tip: We encourage you to be present during the inspection. It’s a good chance to explore your new home further and ask your inspector questions as you go. And it can give you an idea how major or minor each issue is.

There are seven major things that home inspectors look for:

  • Water Damage
  • Structural Integrity
  • Roof damage
  • Damaged Electrical System
  • Plumbing Problems
  • Insect and Pest Infestation
  • Issues with the HVAC System

Home inspectors are not concerned with anything cosmetic in a home, unless it poses a potential safety issue. Everything doesn’t have to be beautiful–it just has to be safe.

What happens next?

The seller most likely will have to foot the bill for fixing any safety issues that the inspection report discovered. Then, the buyer may either request the seller to do the necessary safety repairs or request a credit from the seller so the buyer can do the repairs themselves.

This is why a good real estate agent is so important! An experienced and helpful real estate agent will have trusted experts to rely on, to provide guidance based on the inspector’s findings. They will also provide you with the best advice regarding the current real estate market and the condition of the house, keeping your financial needs in mind.

We are here to support you and guide you through this process, and we won’t drop the ball when you need it most! We’re always ready to answer your questions, refer you to other experts, and help you on your journey to finding your dream home.

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