Buying a home is one of the biggest investments you’ll make. On top of that, a house doesn’t come with a check engine light or an instruction manual. Any issues that accompany the home are now yours to deal with.
A home inspection provides you a better look at potential issues ahead of moving in. Before you think about skipping the inspection to save money here are answers to some common questions that should help you determine whether it’s worth getting one or not.
How much does it cost?
A home inspection can range anywhere from $300 to $500. Dishing out another few hundred dollars may feel like a burden before even moving in, but it gives you a better idea of what the total cost of your investment may look like to have the home in working order.
How long does it take and what does it examine?
An inspection covers the general condition of the home. A routine home inspection will last roughly 2-3 hours depending on the size, condition, and age of the home. Additional attention may be given to electrical wiring, plumbing, roofing, insulation or the structural integrity of the property.
Inspectors utilize a scoring system to produce a report on various parts of the house needing repair and how urgent it is to fix. From this, and by speaking with the inspector as you walk through with them, you’ll be able to better determine if you’d be able to handle any of the repairs financially and emotionally, or if you want to look for another home.
What can I do if major problems are found?
If the inspection reveals large issues you have 3 options.
You can try to renegotiate the purchase price;
You can request that the seller fix the issues before you move in; or
You can back out of the deal.
How do I locate a home inspector?
You can ask your realtor, if you’re working with one, your lender, or your family and friends for referrals.
If all else fails you can check into national associations of professionals for residential building inspectors such as the American Society of Home Inspectors, the National Society of Home Inspectors, or the National Association of Home Inspectors.
Do I need to get a home inspection?
You’re not required to get a home inspection. Oftentimes people opt out of having one because they’re already emotionally attached to the home they’re buying and they don’t want to discover issues that may lead to starting the home search process over.
Keep in mind buying a home is one of the biggest investments you’ll ever make. If you’re spending all of your hard earned money on a home you expect to live in for the next few years it might be worth spending the extra money up front to know the true condition of the home.