Do I Need To Do A Home Inspection When Buying A Home?

Your purchase offer has been accepted by the seller and you close on your new home in 30 days – now what? It is likely that you’ll need to do some additional paperwork with your loan officer to get your mortgage approved. On the real estate side, one of the very first items to be completed once your sales contract has been accepted is to get a Home Inspection.

Should I Do A Home Inspection?
In terms of buying the property you want to make sure that you are getting a good home that is free of defects. A home inspection tells you what the condition of the home is by a objective third party individual called a home inspector. The home inspector should give you a home inspection report almost immediately after finishing their home inspection.
The home inspection is like a physical exam that you get at your doctor’s office and it inspects the home for its physical and structural integrity. A home seller may or may not tell you everything they know about the home in hopes that you buy their home. The great advantage you get with a home inspection as the home buyer is that you are the one who picks the home inspector so you can have some confidence in their findings. You can count on them to tell you if there is anything seriously wrong with the home before you buy it.

Home Inspection Can Save You Money And Time
A home inspection can save you thousands of dollars if there is an unseen problem with the home. Better to know up front if there are problems with the home so you can back out of your sales contract than to find out 3 years later when you are stuck with the problems and have to pay for them.
I love watching those TV shows of the people who buy homes to do fix up and flip to another buyer for a profit. The biggest mistake that I see home buyers make is the failure to get a proper home inspection. I saw on one show where a $200 inspection would have saved the home buyer $50,000. You cannot necessarily see roof, foundation, appliance, air conditioning, plumbing and soil problems with the naked eye.

How Much Does A Home Inspection Cost?
A home inspection will cost you anywhere from $200-$300 for a basic inspection. Larger homes will cost more and the price will increase for additional inspections added beyond the basic home inspection. You as the home buyer will generally have to pay for the home inspection.
In some cases, you may be able to negotiate that the seller or even the real estate agent pays for the inspection. The only time this will most likely work however is during a buyer’s market where sellers are agreeing to pay for many of the home buyer’s expenses to sell their home.

What Does A Home Inspection Cover?
A basic home inspection will check to make sure that there are no foundation or basement structural issues. The home inspector will also check to ensure that the electrical and plumbing systems are in good working order. Most basic inspections include an opinion as to the condition of the roofing surfaces, as well as the condition of the attic and visible insulation.
Even if a property is older an inspector can advise you to the remaining life of the major mechanical systems of the property. Other items covered in home inspections include assessments on: the floors, ceilings, windows, doors, and other visible structures of the home.

Home Inspection Is Not The Lender’s Appraisal
As I mentioned in the beginning, the home inspection is one of the key items that you should get done in buying a home. It is not a required item like some of the other inspections like the appraisal so you will have to elect to get one. The appraisal is not the same as the home inspection so don’t count on using that to cover what you need to know about the physical integrity of the home. You can ask your buyer’s agent for a list of home inspectors to pick from or you can search for them on GetPreQualified using our extra services section.
See What Inspections Do I Need To Buy A Home for additonal information.
If you want more information on this topic please ask EdGAR.