House hunting can be a long, stressful process. But don’t let finally finding your dream home blind you to its potential issues and pitfalls.
A property inspection can give you valuable information, whether you decide to move forward with the purchase or not. But not all property inspections are created equal.
Just as you can’t expect great food or service from every single restaurant you visit, simply getting an inspection isn’t enough to ensure that a home or commercial building is in great condition.
Only those inspectors with the right training, experience, and eye for detail will be able to deliver an inspection report that you can trust.
Is Your Property Inspection Detailed Enough?
Most people aren’t even aware that they have a shower pan, much less how to check it for leaks. But this one piece of hardware can show us a lot about the importance of a detailed property inspection.
Your shower pan is a waterproof barrier that sits under the tile floor of your shower. It’s designed to catch any water that might seep through cracks in the grout. If there were a crack in your shower pan, you wouldn’t be able to see it, but it would cause mold, mildew, and rot nonetheless.
Replacing a shower pan leak is no easy matter, either; you would have to tear up all of the tile in the shower floor just to reach it. If you have an older house with hard-to-match tile, you might even have to pull up all the tile in the entire bathroom. Do you have enough money set aside for a full bathroom renovation?
The government does not require shower pans to be checked during a property inspection, although there is a simple and accurate way of doing so. Your property inspector should block the shower drain and fill the shower with a couple inches of water. If there are any leaks, they should be evident before the inspection is complete.
A home inspector who only does the bare minimum puts you at risk of a lengthy, inconvenient, and costly repairs later on. Compared to the high cost (financial and otherwise) of fixing these mistakes, hiring an experienced and detailed property inspector is more than worth it.
Make an Informed Decision
Getting an accurate, detailed property inspection is one of the most important steps in real estate.
Finding the most beautiful home in the world within your price range is never a great deal if it requires a complete overhaul before you can move in. This is where a good property inspection can prove invaluable.
A detailed property inspection should look beneath the surface to root out issues without cosmetic “symptoms.” Any layperson can tell you that the water dripping from the ceiling is a problem. Only an experienced, trustworthy property inspector knows to also check the shower pans.
Knowing the extent of a building’s repairs before you close gives you information you can use to decide whether to move forward with the purchase. If a home is at the top of your budget, but a property inspection comes back saying that it needs a new roof, you can use this in your favor to either negotiate a lower price or back out of the deal altogether.
Experience Is Everything
A property inspection is only as good as the inspector performing it.
Yet you only have to take a 120-hour course (and pass a state exam) to become a home inspector in the State of Florida. That’s the equivalent of working a full-time job for only three weeks!
Your home is one of the most expensive purchases you will ever make. Don’t trust such a momentous decision to the most affordable property inspector. Choose one with the background and experience necessary to give you a thorough, accurate description of your home’s condition beneath the surface.
Ask potential home inspectors what items they check for and how they check them. Do they limit themselves to legal requirements for home inspections or do they go above and beyond? Read online reviews and do your research on their qualifications.
The process of finding a new home or commercial building is too important to trust to an inexperienced inspector. And when it comes to real estate, there’s no such thing as a Return Policy. Once the property is in your name, all of it—good and bad—is your responsibility.
Make it a priority to hire a detailed property inspector who will provide you with as much information as possible so that you can make an informed decision.
Once your home inspector uncovers a potential issue, making a decision is easy. But when it comes to property inspections, it’s what you don’t find that comes back to haunt you.
Just like homes, no two property inspectors are alike. Protect your savings, your family, and your future investment by only working with experienced, detail-oriented property inspectors like those at BIS.
We have more than 40 years in the industry and are certified in Home Inspection, General Contracting, and Engineering. Knowing what goes into a building allows you to get the most out of it, whether you’re purchasing a family home, investment property, or a commercial space.
Contact us today to schedule your property inspection. We look forward to meeting you!