Selling or Buying a House? Why You Need a Home Inspection

House hunting often feels like a game filled with ups and downs. You tour a home and you fall in love with the vaulted ceilings and original glass doorknobs, only to find that someone else made a better offer, or it didn’t pass the inspection.

If you’ve found a dream home that is within your budget, or you’ve got a full cash offer for your home, getting the news of a passed inspection can be a huge sigh of relief. Keep reading to learn about the importance of having a home inspection, what to expect and how to prepare.

Why Should I Have a Home Inspection?

Real estate home inspections can save you a lot of future headaches. They are inexpensive and can detect a number of problems:

  • Termites
  • Foundation problems
  • Faulty wiring
  • Plumbing issues
  • Roof damage
  • Poor insulation
  • Radon

During a property inspection, you can even request well water testing, oil tank testing and septic tank testing. Most general home inspectors should be qualified to perform all of these tests for additional fees, but keep in mind that it can save you thousands of dollars in the long run.

As soon as you make an offer on a home, it’s time to get an inspection. Most realtors will help you draft up an offer proposal that is contingent upon the house passing the inspection, so you don’t have to wait for it to pass before making an offer.

What’s Included in a Home Inspection?

If you’ve done your research on the best local home inspection companies, you shouldn’t have to worry about whether or not your home inspector is doing a thorough job.

  • During the process, you can expect the inspector to take a close look at the home’s main systems, including the electrical, plumbing, heating and cooling system.
  • You might also see your inspector use special radon detection equipment or even climb on the roof to look for additional problems.
  • A reliable home inspector will also pay special attention to the structure of the home including the foundation, walls, floors, ceilings, insulation, windows and doors.
  • From the attic to the basement, all rooms should be examined.

If you are the potential home buyer, try to be present for the inspection, and keep in mind that it can last for several hours. Follow your inspector around the house, and ask questions so you can learn more about your potential house; however, try not to get in their way and respect their time.

Afterwards, make sure your inspector provides you with a detailed home inspection report and reviews it with you. Hire a qualified contractor to perform any repairs deemed necessary in the inspection report.

How to Prepare for a Property Inspection

Before you even put your house on the market, you should prepare for a home inspection.

What do home inspectors look for? Basically, they are looking for signs that the home was well-maintained. If you are selling your home, it’s a good idea talk to an experienced contractor about having repairs completed before the real estate inspection takes place. That reduces the number of problems the inspector will find, and makes the closing process easier for everyone.

  • In order to make a good first impression, make sure your house is clean. Although home inspectors won’t penalize you for having cobwebs and unkept floors, presenting a tidy home will show the inspector that you took steps to maintain your home.
  • If you’ve already moved out of your home, you’ll need to keep the utilities connected and the pilot lights on so the inspector can turn on the stove, run the air conditioning and heat, and check the electrical system.
  • Clear any furniture or boxes that might be blocking the utility closet so he or she can take a look at the water heater and furnace.
  • The same goes for the exterior of your home. Make sure you don’t have any outdoor brush or debris that could block key inspection points such as the foundation.

Hopefully, you’ve saved all of your repair receipts over the years. If this is the case, make sure to leave them in a visible spot. This will also give your potential buyer some added peace of mind.

Are you in the process of purchasing a new home in southwest Missouri?

If you have remodeling or home inspection needs, contact Elite Renovations & Design for a free quote. We’ve been providing full-service home remodeling and plumbing service to southwest Missouri since 2006.