Nervous about what will be found in the home inspection? Here’s what to expect.
A home inspection by a state licensed home inspector is a critical part of the real estate process, whether you’re buying or selling. The results of the inspection report are the basis for the negotiations between buyer and seller regarding damage, repairs, and replacements.
Dylon Baker, real estate broker in Fairfield, CA, advises, “Sometimes a new home buyer will think they can skip the inspection if the place seemed in great shape. But an inspection is a critical part of the process and even properties in apparently great shape need a deeper look during escrow.”
Often contracts will indicate that the items being inspected need to be in “good working condition.” It is important to remember that all homes have defects—even most new homes! Any repairs to defects found by the inspector will be a part of the negotiated process between buyer and seller.
So what will the licensed inspector be looking at when he or she visits a home? Let’s start with some of the major points of interest on the outside:
The inspector will perform a thorough review of systems and surfaces within the home. These include (but are not limited to) the following:
While not a complete list of every item that will be inspected and included in the final report, the above list gives the home buyer or seller an overview of the major factors that may come into play during a home inspection.
Jake Tasharski of Center Coast Realty in Chicago, IL says: “First, it’s important to understand the purpose of the inspection in the first place. Before a buyer is locked into a contract, they have the right to know about any significant issues with the property’s structure/foundation, or whether large fixtures or appliances need to be repaired or replaced. A good way to prepare is to go back and review the report your inspector gave you when you first purchased your home. If you haven’t addressed the issues outlined in that report, chances are they will come up again this time around during the buyer’s inspection.”
The home inspection will often lead to negotiation. Follow you real estate agent’s lead in deciding what your strategy will be.
“It’s common for buyers in today’s market to ask for small repairs anyway—even if all the major systems in the home are working properly,” Tasharski says. “It’s important to know that just because buyers ask doesn’t mean you as the seller are obligated to complete the repairs or grant the closing credits requested!”
An understanding of the purpose and process of the inspection and the resulting report can help both purchaser and seller come to a mutual agreement that will facilitate the sale.
You’ve got questions and we can’t wait to answer them.