Home inspections are not required by mortgage lenders and it is up to the home buyer whether or not to do a home inspection on a home they are purchasing. Home inspections normally cost around $300 to $500, depending on the county and state. Home buyers can check prices on home inspections. Since a home will probably be your greatest investment, it is highly recommended that home buyers spend the money to do a home inspection. Home inspectors are professionals who can detect defects with the home, especially when it comes to high ticket repair items such as foundation issues, HVAC issues, mold, termite, plumbing, electrical, insulation, and other potential defects with the subject property. Just because a home inspector may come up with a bad report on certain issues such as reporting that the roof has only a three year life span left does not mean that the home buyer should cancel the real estate purchase contract. A home inspection report may mean that the home buyer can renegotiate the price due to certain problems with the home and it can also alert the home buyer what types of home improvements should be on the radar and may need to start saving funds to do the repairs in the near future. Home inspections may be a way of getting out of the real estate purchase contract if the repairs needed may be too large and intense. For example, a roof may not be a big issue where if the home inspector recommends a new roof needs to be installed in three to five years. However, if the home inspector notes that the subject property has major foundation problems and crack foundation walls, this can mean major problems where it may be best to get out of the real estate purchase contract and look for another home.
What Do Home Inspections Cover?
A reputable home inspect should carefully examine both the interior and exterior of the home including the attic space, basement, and/or crawl space. Each home is different so the home inspection will differ and vary depending on the type of property. In general, home inspectors will be examining the foundation of the home, the roof, attic, basement, crawl space, plumbing, electrical, air conditioning and heating systems, insulation of the home, structural components, and most importantly, the potential hazards of the home such as potential fire hazards with the electrical and/or HVAC systems, and potential leaks with the plumbing system. A home inspector is a general inspector and not a specialist. If he suspects issues with a particular system such as the well and septic, he may note that on his report that further examination will be required. The home buyer then may need to hire a well and septic specialist where further due diligence is required.
Home Inspection Report
After a home inspector has thoroughly inspected the subject property, the home inspector will prepare a home inspection report which details his inspection and findings in writing with pictures. The home inspection report is sent to the home buyer and the real estate agent. Mortgage lenders do not get a copy of the home inspection report since home inspection is not mandatory. There are times where a home inspection is required by mortgage lenders and that is in the case where the appraiser notes defects of the property and that is when a mortgage lender may require a home inspection.
Home Inspection Contingency
Home buyers will put contingencies when writing up an offer. Mortgage contingencies and home inspection contingencies are very common. Most home inspection contingencies are for 7 days from the date of the accepted offer. Home buyers normally order the home inspection before ordering the appraisal so in the even if the home has issues that the home buyer does not want to deal with, they can cancel the real estate purchase contract or try to renegotiate the purchase price. Unfortunately, the home inspection fee will be spent and the home buyer will be out of pocket if they decide not to pursue with the real estate purchase transaction. However, the few hundred dollars is worth its weight in gold if the home inspector may find major flaws such as foundation damage or mold behind the drywall.