Home Inspections – 9 Tips to Minimize Your Risk as a Buyer by Finding the Right Inspector

This article is written for buyers of real estate in California, but most of the tips are applicable to every state. The State of California and the California Department of Real Estate now strongly recommend that every buyer of property in the State have a professional home inspection.

1. What is a home inspection?

A home inspection examines the physical and operational condition of a property through visual means and through testing of plumbing fixtures, electrical systems, appliances and heating and air conditioning systems. Inspections include the roof, foundation, water drainage, walls, floors, windows, doors, and more. Home inspections do NOT include inspection for living organisms including mold and termites. However, most home inspectors will comment if they see evidence of water, mold, infestation and/or damage from any of those.

2. Are there inspection standards?

To quote the California Real Estate Inspection Association (CREIA) Standards of Practice, “A Real Estate inspection is a non-invasive physical examination designed to identify material defects in the systems, structures, and components of a buildings…” and, “A material defect is a condition that significantly affects the value, desirability, habitability, or safety of the building.” For the entire document see the CREIA Standards.

3. What is reported?

The inspection report itemizes each “material defect” that needs attention. Reports vary considerably. Some are complicated checklists and narratives without pictures. Others include full color pictures with captions explaining what is in the picture. Most buyers find reports with pictures are much more useful because they make defects clearer to the seller when you ask the seller to fix a defect. As you know, “a picture is worth a thousand words”.

4. Look for the latest InfraRed (IR) thermal imaging.

Every inspection should include measurements of electrical outlets with electricity monitors. Water pressure should be taken with a pressure meter. Temperature probes are used to be sure heaters and air conditioners are working properly. The latest technology is InfraRed (IR) thermal imaging. This is an invaluable tool that some inspectors are starting to use. It can show defects the human eye cannot, such as the presence of moisture in floors, walls and ceilings. It shows defects in insulation and leaks in air and heating systems. If you can find an inspection company offering IR thermal imaging, consider them first.

5. What about licensing and credentials?

Few people know that the State of California does neither control nor license home inspectors! So it is very important to investigate the qualifications of any inspector. Get references from the inspector or talk to agents who have worked with the inspector. Look for the inspector’s membership in industry organizations. Your inspector should adhere to the CREIA Standards of Practice mentioned earlier. Other organizations include the National Association of Certified Home Inspectors, NACHI (www.nachi.org), and the American Society of Home Inspectors, ASHI (www.ashi.org).

6. Be sure you know the background of the person actually doing the inspection.
Many good home inspectors are one man companies. Others are franchises with the inspector/owner running his local office. Others are companies that have many inspectors on payroll with varying amounts of experience. Any time you consider any company, be sure to get the qualifications of the one person assigned to your job.

7. Look for a guarantee in writing.

Unlike most other businesses, very few home inspectors fully guarantee their work. A good guarantee does not just offer your money back for the cost of an inspection, but actually pays to correct any defect that was missed by the inspector during an inspection. Don’t accept any verbal comments about guarantees. An inspection company with a real guarantee will have it in writing on their web site.

8. What should it cost?

The cost of a home inspection will vary greatly. A 1000 square foot condo will be lower in cost than a 3000 square foot home. Never make a decision on price alone. Saving $100 by going with the cheapest inspection can cost $1000s of dollars if something is missed.

9. How do I find the inspector’s credentials?

Look for an inspector with an informative web site. You should be able to see the inspector’s background, experience, qualifications, Certifications, sample report and customer references. Look for a guarantee, the details of which should be spelled out. Call the inspector and ask any questions you have.

Note: This article is copyrighted by the author but buyers and home inspectors are encouraged to copy and use this article as long as the author’s name and web site are kept with it.

Home Inspections – Tips To Help You Manage It All

If you are a real estate investor looking to buy a new piece of property, whether to actually live in it or otherwise, home inspection will be a crucial step in the process for finalizing the transaction. This service will let you take the help of an expert to unearth the flaws and problems with the property you are interested in and determine its true value in terms of its actual state. This system therefore allows buyers to understand what they are getting into and prevent any unsuspecting shocks in the near future related to the property they are buying.

There are many ways in which you too as a buyer can contribute to the home inspection process. This article has all the tips you will need to bear in mind when managing it all.

# Attend the inspection

It is always recommended that the actual buyer should attend the expert home inspection and not just let the real estate agent get involved in the process. This will help you get a first-hand account of what the inspector thinks about the property and ensure that you gather authentic information. Direct contact with this professional will also help you in understanding the inspection process in it so that you are better prepared for what is coming.

# Follow-up procedures

If issues are found or an inspector makes recommendations of repairs that could be completed down the road, then an estimate for repairs should be made to figure out the cost involved. Some inspectors will make a suggestion for a follow-up from another service provider to look at a specific issue. This is where you should adamantly follow the suggestions of the professional and get in another expert to examine the problem, even if doing so might cause delays on your closing the deal. Understand that it will always be better to let a probable purchase go than actually making a bad and costly mistake.

# Do not trust just the home inspector

This professional is of course one of the best experts you can trust to determine the actual state of the property you are looking to buy but there will always be certain specific issues where getting in specialist opinion can help you make better decisions. Think there is something wrong with the HVAC unit installed in the property? Call in a repair person. Suspecting pests and termites? Get the pest control people to come look at the place. These are small and often overlooked issues that can be a real pain in the future. Getting a comprehensive idea from a diverse set of professionals might be just what you need to make the right choices.

# Age of the property doesn’t matter

Even if it is a new home, an inspection would still be called for. This step will verify that everything has been built to code and no corners were cut in the building process. Older homes of course, need inspections for obvious reasons.

To get to know about home inspections in Palm Beach County, visit ProBuildersFL.com.

Home Inspection Tips With Free Home Inspection Checklist – Efficient Preparation

When it comes time to sell or appraise your home, you’re going to need a home inspection to make sure that your home is in good condition. When conducting a preliminary inspection of your home, it could really help you to have solid home inspection tips and a free home inspection checklist. Having those tips can show you what to look for and where to look for it, while the checklist will help to ensure that you don’t forget any items or locations. With these tools at hand, you’ll find that you can move through your inspections quickly and efficiently.

Most home inspection tips with free home inspection checklist will break your house up into sections so that you can take the inspection a section at a time, making your inspection more efficient. You can start inspecting by room, from the entry to your home all the way out to the backyard. You certainly don’t want to forget to inspect the outside of your home. Curb appeal is becoming more and more important to potential homebuyers, especially in Boca Raton Woodfield Country Club, making it crucial that you pay attention to the exterior details of your home. You can work your way from front to back, and left to right, depending on the easiest flow of movement through your house.

Within each room, there are a variety of categories you want to check. You want to check the structural elements of the house, any plumbing, the electrical features, and any appliances or system equipment (such as a water heater or HVAC unit). You also want to be sure to check out-of-the-way areas, such as the garage, attic, basement, roof, and the exterior of your home. This is a lot of material to have to cover in each room, so it’s always good to have your home inspection tips with free home inspection checklist handy.

Having an inspection can help you get your house ready to put on the market. You’ll be able to see what you need to fix so that you don’t have to pay an appraiser to come out and provide a list of items to repair and then pay him or her to come out and give you a thumbs-up after you’re done with the work. It’s far more efficient to find these issues on your own. And with some good home inspection tips and a free home inspection checklist, you’ll save a lot of time and money on getting your home in the best possible condition.