- 13 Oct
Home Inspection Tips that Will Save Buyers Money Before Purchasing a Home
Keep from making some common home-buying mistakes before you purchase a new or existing older home for you and your family. Here are some helpful tips.
It may or may not seem obvious to you, but you should definitely attend each home inspection with the home inspector that you are considering purchasing. Many folks don’t even realize that they are permitted to attend the home inspections too. In fact, good experienced home inspectors would expect you to be in attendance with them for each home inspection. That way, they can show you potential problems in person and you can further discuss any home questions or concerns you may have too. In addition, unfortunately, a few home inspectors might try to cut corners while charging you full price, which is another important reason to be there. Lastly, don’t let snow or mud or other debris prevent your inspector from checking hard to reach areas.
It is vital that you get recommendations, and many of them, online and from other friends and family members too, before hiring a home inspector. Even though your real estate agent may suggest a particular home inspector, that inspector could turn out to be in cahoots with the real estate agent, tricking you into buying a potential lemon of a house. You can also go to sites like Angie’s List or the American Society of Home Inspectors to interview and search for a qualified and certified home inspector. Ask the inspector questions over the phone before hiring him or her, like their background, how many years they’ve been doing this, how many house they’ve inspected to date, training and certifications, licenses and insurance too, continuing education classes taken, etc.
Never be too intimidated to ask him or her questions either, over the phone and in person during the home inspections. And you can never ask TOO many questions either. A great home inspector will be patient and understanding and will answer all your questions thoroughly and in ways you can better understand too. And if you don’t understand something, ask for clarification. Also for a list of what questions it is recommended to ask the home inspector, just google search for a list!
For a typical home inspection, the utilities will still be connected by the sellers, but sometimes that is not always the case. Regardless of the situation, be sure all utilities are on and connected properly before each inspection service. If they are turned off, you may miss seeing important issues, like outlets working or not, appliances functioning, having sufficient water flow and more.
If the home you’re buying gets its water from a drinking well (about 15% of U.S. homes do), you need to have the water tested for contaminants. Also make sure the home inspector also tests for mold and potential pest problems. If he or she is not qualified to do so, either hire independent pest and mold inspectors or find a home inspector that is qualified to also test for pests and mold too.
Are you considering buying a new home? Believe it or not, new homes still need to be inspected. Many have defects, even if they met county codes, and it is highly recommended that a home inspector still performs an inspection on them with you. Even if the builder reassures you that the house is perfect, get it inspected anyway. Save your urge to gamble for the casinos.
Lastly if your home inspector sees an issue and recommends that you hire a specialist, make sure you take his or her word for it and do just that. It may save you a lot more money down the road after you are already living in that home with your family.
About the Author
My journey as a Cleveland home inspector began 15 years ago when I was buying real estate properties in Ohio. Because they were my investments, I wanted to make sure I was getting a great deal, so I decided to learn everything I could about general home inspections.