Although it is not mandatory to hire a home inspector, as an experienced Real Estate Professional, I would strongly suggest that you hire one before you invest in a property. A home inspection is one of the best strategies you can use to save big by uncovering hidden and deferred maintenance problems and structural issues in the property that you’re planning to purchase.
An inspector will carry a full inspection of the property, including its exterior and interior. From the ceiling to cabinets, foundation, roof, plumbing, electrical system, and grading, they will assess each and every part of the home.
Simply stated, a home inspection can help you to determine the overall condition of the home and avoid the costly mistake of buying a property that is in need of major repairs.
Other reasons for hiring a home inspector include:
- Evaluate Home Buying Risk and Make the Purchase with Confidence
Home buying is one of the most expensive investments you are likely to make in your lifetime. Therefore, you need to make sure that it is in your best interest. And that is exactly what you can achieve through a home inspection.
A home inspector can give the property a proper check-up, thereby helping you to identify expensive home repairs that aren’t obvious or visible to the untrained eye. This can further help you to alleviate home buying risks and make an informed decision.
Essentially, a home inspection can give you a little breathing space as the inspector can help you to review the pros and cons of the property that you want to purchase and make a final buying decision with sheer confidence.
If the findings of the home inspection indicate that something is really wrong with the home that you want to buy, then you can either renegotiate the offer or continue with your market research before finding your dream home.
- Detect Safety Issues
Through a comprehensive home inspection, you can easily detect potential safety issues in the property that you want to buy, such as radon, mold and carbon monoxide. Did you know that radon is an invisible and odourless radioactive gas that can cause lung cancer while mold growth can lower the indoor air quality and expose the people living inside the homes to the risk of allergies and asthma? Most often, home sellers don’t share these problems with prospects. Therefore, as a home buyer, it is your responsibility to get the property inspected for safety issues before you take the plunge.
- Identify Any Illegal Installation or Unpermitted Addition
Illegal rooms, basements and altered garages that are not built in compliance with building codes or with a proper permit, they can affect your insurance, usability, taxes and the value of your new home. Thus, it is important to identify installations and additions to the home that doesn’t exist legally, which is only possible through a home inspection.
- Presence of Termites
To some home buyers, the presence of termites may not be a problem, but to others it is. If you’re in the latter group, then it is advisable to get the home inspected by an experienced and skilled home inspector who can identify signs of an infestation right away.
Not only are termites dangerous from a health point of view, but they can also threaten the structural integrity of the real estate property that you wish to purchase. Needless to say, investing in a home that has a weak structure is of no use as it will only create more problems for you in the future by making it extremely difficult to sell it in the future.
- Increase Your Bargaining Power
Some home sellers are too rigid. They don’t bend when it comes to buying offers. However, after your home inspector discovers problems with the property that were not highlighted by the seller in the first place, you get you an upper hand and may increase your bargaining power.
In such a situation, you can negotiate better and even rigid sellers may have to show some flexibility after that, especially if they are motivated to sell. This can make them lower the home’s selling price in order to compensate for the expenses that you will incur for repair work. Furthermore, some sellers may even agree to make the repairs before they sell the home, thereby helping you save big on costly repairs in the long run.
- Forecasting the Expenses that May Arise in the Future
Another major benefit of hiring a home inspector is that they can point out all the crucial elements of the home that are likely to need attention and fixes in order to ensure efficient functioning of the property. For example, a home inspector may discover that the home requires a new heating and air conditioning system. They may also reveal the actual state of the contents in the home like water heaters, electrical and plumbing. All these potential future improvements give you the opportunity to determine whether or not your budget will allow for these expenses.
How a Real Estate Professional Can Help with a Home Inspection
Before buying your new home, it is best to sit down and discuss the home inspection process with your real estate professional. Based on their experience, industry and market knowledge and understanding, they can provide you with quality input on what they believe is important for the inspector to focus on, according to your specific needs.
In other words, they’ll advise you on the home inspection process and how to go about it. Furthermore, some real estate professionals can also arrange a home inspector for you, thus making the process fast, easy and stress-free.
A home inspection can take about 3 to 4 days. After reviewing the findings of the home inspection process with your real estate agent, you can decide on whether to continue with the purchase agreement or not.
Remember that if the home inspection highlights major repairs, even then some sellers may not be willing to make the repairs or adjust the asking price for the home. In such a situation, you can choose to walk out and continue with our market search for a dream home.
It won’t be wrong to say that home inspection gives you, the potential buyer, peace of mind knowing you have all the valuable information you need to invest your hard-earned money in the best property.
As you feel more informed, you’re confident about your decision to buy or not. Also, the findings of the home inspection report can act as a negotiation bridge in closing the deal as you can discuss with the home seller the repairs needed and the routine maintenance that should be performed to keep the property in top condition.