The truth of the matter is, whether you’re selling or buying, an inspection can save you from sizable repair credits or purchasing a potential money-pit. There are two perspectives and, depending on your transaction type (i.e., a sale or purchase), you’ll want to get clear on the benefits of a home inspection:
Buyers. When buying, if there are any issues that arise from the inspection the seller will need to resolve problem areas by addressing the repairs, offering a repair credit or reducing the sales price.
Sellers. When selling, an inspection can shine a light on any problem areas in the home and give you an opportunity to make the repairs yourself. This could save you from having to give your buyer a large credit for a twenty dollar fix.
You might have some questions when considering an inspection including:
What will an inspector inspect?
Both the interior and exterior of your home should be inspected. You can expect the inspector to examine: the attic, basement, garage, heating and cooling systems, any visible plumbing and electrical, exterior walls, foundation, roof, gutters and flashing.
What is the average inspection cost?
Costs will vary across the country and are driven by: location, square footage, age of the home and the types of services requested such as septic, well and radon testing.
When shopping for an inspector, it’s wise to focus on an inspector’s experience and knowledge versus the fee.
How can I find a reputable inspector?
Licensing varies from state to state and generally home inspectors are not required to be licensed. A surefire way to check on an inspector’s services is to check Yelp and the Better Business Bureau – there is nothing better than a consumer review. Also there are home inspection associations you can contact such as: American Society of Home Inspectors, The National Association of Home Inspectors and The International Association of Certified Home Inspectors.
Should I meet with the inspector?
If you’re selling or buying you should be present for your inspection. This will give you the opportunity to ask questions and get clear on what needs to be repaired – if anything.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions – lots of them.
When selling your home, tackling any issue up front can only help support your asking price. When buying, make sure you are clear about what you are getting into – you don’t want to close only to find out you need a new roof.
The bottom line, inspections are worth the cost. Managing potential problems at the onset of your transaction allows you to set appropriate expectations and make decisions about how to best handle the sale or purchase of your home.
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