As a prospective home buyer, there might be dozens of properties to review before finding the proverbial “dream home” worthy of placing an offer.
Once your real estate agent has negotiated the initial offer to buy a home and it is accepted, the real work begins. This is where a home inspection is going to prove to be crucial.
The results of a home inspection can determine the final cost of the home. They could be several issues that would generate a charge-back.
That is where the person who is offering to sell a home will reduce the asking price to allow the buyer to pay for repairs. That might be a valuable consideration if a roof or furnace needs to be replaced.
The home inspection might even create circumstances where the dream home could be considered a nightmare. This is why finding the right inspector for any type of real estate transaction is so crucial.
Here are some helpful tips on how to find a qualified home inspector:
Check Their Qualifications
When you are looking to buy a home, your inspector can help identify any issues with that property might have that could become a financial burden. This is why it is vital to ask about the inspector’s qualifications.
Have they had training in construction and building maintenance? If so, then what kind of training?
Depending on the age of the real estate property, there might be issues with regard to lead-based paint or asbestos that have to be looked into. Has the home inspector been trained with hazardous substance detection?
There might even be structural concerns that an inspector should also be able to address. Do they have any engineering training? In other words, they’re not just looking for water damage in the ceiling.
Finding The Right Home Inspector
Ask For Sample Reports
Each inspector has their own reports. They should make samples available that will allow you to assess all the specific details of what they’ll be looking for at the home.
Ideally, this report should go beyond just a checklist. It should offer up details of any areas of concerns. Having a multi-page report with photos included is always preferred.
Get Their References
Every home inspector should have references from former clients. You’ll want to call up the clients who have lived in their homes the longest. They will be able to tell you if the details of that inspection were accurate.
It might take a few months for any problems to surface in a home. If the inspector caught those problems when they were minor, then they are definitely someone to consider.
Review Their Certifications
Becoming a home inspector takes training and certification. Not every home inspector is required to be part of the groups associated with this field. However, it goes to demonstrate their dedication to their craft when they do become members.
The American Society of Home Inspectors, and the National Institute of Building Inspectors are all the prominent trade organizations in this field. Being a member of one or all of them is a good sign.
Ask About Equipment
A qualified home inspector should be utilizing a lot more than just a flashlight and a level. There are many high-tech devices that can analyze electric circuits, moisture content and carbon monoxide levels.
Inspectors can also put digital cameras to work to gain access to crawlspaces and rafters that might not be easy to examine.
Your Realtor might have recommendations for a qualified home inspector that you can hire. Don’t hesitate to be present when the inspection is happening. It might take a few hours of waiting in the home but it will be time worth spent when you can get immediate feedback.