- 09 Apr
Part 2: Do You Really Need a Home Inspection These Days?
If you’re buying your first home or a different home for you and your growing family, and you are trying to decide whether or not you should get a home inspection for each potential home you are considering buying, I can make it really easy for you – the answer is YES.
Today, it’s not uncommon for people to forgo a home inspection in order to make their offer more appealing to the seller, but this is quite a huge gamble. You may get the house, but you might also get a lot of unexpected and expensive problems that go along with it. If you want to decrease your chances of getting burned when buying a home, a home inspection is vital.
When you don’t get a home inspection, you are essentially relying on the seller to disclose everything that may be wrong with the house. This is very risky because some sellers just won’t do it, while others genuinely might not know. Having an impartial expert come in and evaluate the house is the best way to get an honest, informed opinion.
Having said that, getting a home inspection is not a guarantee that you’ll uncover every little problem. The home inspection process is far from perfect. However, here’s what you need to know.
A home inspection isn’t required, but highly recommended. If a buyer agrees to an inspection, they can choose a certified home inspector to conduct a thorough examination of the property inside and outside, and check for any problems or hidden defects with the electrical, plumbing, appliances, HVAC system, roof, foundation, etc.
In reality, 95 percent of house buyers should always get a home inspection. There are a few cases when a home inspection is not needed and some cases when not getting a home inspection will actually give you a better chance at getting a great deal on a house.
Do not waive a home inspection if you are not very experienced in buying homes, knowing what repairs are possible to come up and how much they will cost!
What a Home Inspector Typically Inspects:
These are just some of the things you must be aware of and know what to look for if there is a serious problem. These issues do not include cosmetic items or things you can see are wrong like:
Not only do you have to be able to see when there is a problem, but you also have to know how much it will cost to repair these items if there is a problem
Is it safe to waive an inspection if a home is pre-inspected? HUD homes have a home inspection done before they are listed. Some traditional HUD listings will advertise they are pre-inspected. I think it is a good sign that a home is pre-inspected, but again it is best to get your own inspection done, even on HUD homes. Inspections are relatively cheap compared to the cost of the problems you might find following a purchase and moving in with your family. Even if a house is pre-inspected I would have your own inspection done to confirm nothing was missed.
The most important thing I can recommend is to take the inspection report seriously. By the time the inspection happens, people are often already emotionally attached to the house, and they have a tendency to brush off the results.
If the results are not what you were expecting, you can ask the seller to fix the problems or you can ask for money so you can make the repairs yourself. If they refuse you really need to think about what you’re getting into and if your budget can handle it.
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.