The home inspection shouldn’t be a secretive process.
Allow a Florida home inspector to share a few insider tips.
Whether you’re buying or selling a home, the home inspection is often the most nerve wracking part of the process.
“What will they find? Will the home pass inspection? Will I have to pay for repairs?”
At BIS, we don’t believe that home inspections should be shrouded in mystery. In fact, there are several things that your home inspector wishes you knew before going into the process!
In this article, we’ll shed some light on home inspections so that buyers and sellers alike have a better understanding of the most important task in real estate.
When you’ve finally found a house that checks off all your boxes, it’s frustrating to contain your excitement until after the inspection. After all, anything can happen (and, in our experience, usually does).
But home inspections don’t have to be a buzzkill if you keep a few important things in mind.
1. Inspections Aren’t Optional
While you are legally allowed to forgo a home inspection, you really shouldn’t.
The purpose of a home inspection is to get an accurate snapshot of the home’s condition before you are financially responsible for it. Too many homeowners have found themselves responsible for thousands of dollars in repair bills that they never would have taken on if they’d gotten an inspection.
Don’t skip this important step!
2. New Homes Need Inspections, Too
Just because a home is brand new doesn’t mean that it’s in perfect condition.
In fact, both contractors and government inspectors are typically too rushed (or simply not knowledgeable enough) to catch every single mistake. It takes an experienced home inspector to notice these errors while they are still the building company’s responsibility.
3. You Get What You Pay For
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: there’s no return policy on real estate. Which means you simply can’t afford to get a cheap inspection.
When you’re up against the possibility of thousands of dollars in repair bills, it’s best to work with the most thorough and accurate home inspector rather than the most affordable one.
4. It Won’t Be Perfect
BIS has been inspecting buildings of all shapes and sizes for more than 40 years and, to this day, we’ve never seen a home, office space, warehouse, parking garage, or any other structure that didn’t have at least one flaw.
If the home inspector is any good, the inspection report will come back with several issues that need to be either addressed or monitored. This doesn’t (always) mean you need to back out of the deal, however, because…
5. Anything Can Be Fixed
When it comes to home inspections, the question is rarely “Can it be fixed?” but rather “How much will it cost?”
When an inspection uncovers problems, take a realistic look at what it will take to fix them. While there are certainly some issues that will require more money than you want to spend, others may only require a few bucks.
6. There’s a Lot We Can’t See
Even if the seller is helpful enough to move everything out of their way, home inspectors are limited in what they can examine.
For instance, even the most thorough home inspector in the world isn’t going to knock down walls to get a peek at the wiring and plumbing. If s/he didn’t see an issue because it was tucked away behind the drywall, that’s no one’s fault.
7. Your Home Inspector Can’t Advise You
The home inspector plays an important role in the home buying process, but their expertise only goes so far.
Just because they can tell you what condition the HVAC is in doesn’t mean they can tell you whether or not you should buy the house. That decision is up to you and you alone.
Depending on their expertise, your home inspector may be able to give you a ballpark idea of repair costs or the remaining life of a particular component, but go to your real estate agent if you need advice.
While buyers are the ones ordering inspections, sellers do own the home being inspected. For this reason, it helps to know a couple of things before the home inspector shows up.
8. Remove Pets
As much as you love your pets, they do have a tendency to get underfoot, so keep them out of the house until the inspection is over.
And yes, this does mean “keep them out of the house.” Keeping your dog confined to a bedroom may be fine when you have guests over, but the home inspector will need to examine all areas of the house in order to do a thorough inspection.
Preventing access to any area may make it seem as though you’re trying to hide something.
Many sellers are probably unaware that the home inspector is not allowed to move furniture or other personal items out of the way during the inspection. If you have a piece of furniture in front of a door or a pile of laundry on top of a floor vent, they cannot inspect those areas.
Make sure the home inspector has proper access to all rooms and areas of the house, including water heaters, HVAC units, and fuse boxes.
10. Your Home Inspector Is Your Most Important Asset
Though the home inspection is a relatively quick part of the home buying process, it is one of the most important.
Without a home inspection, there is no way to know the exact condition the building is in or what it may take to restore it to a livable condition. And not every home inspector is equally up to the task.
BIS has remained one of South Florida’s most thorough and knowledgeable inspection companies for the last four decades. Even nationally recognized newspapers and television channels have relied on BIS’s unparalleled expertise.
If you’re buying a home, don’t proceed without a home inspection by BIS. Call today to schedule your inspection.