House Inspections; do I really need one, and what should I look for?



The information below will give you some idea of what you need in an House Inspection.

First of all, let's know the difference between an House Inspection, and an Engineer's Inspection, because many home buyers employ the two terms a lot.

A
house inspector is an individual trained and licensed to inspect houses and their internal features and accessories. They also determine overall condition, and the useful life of important materials used in the construction as well as the necessary utilities for the home buyer. An Engineer is also capable to do these things, but they are also licensed to perform structural  inspections to determine the integrity of a dwelling, or any renovations that the purchaser wants.

Remember, it is important to be present at the inspection, because a picture is worth a thousand words.
 This way you won't be blinded by the glitter and miss any issues that might be found.


Here are some things that are important to the inspection process, and done by the house inspector.

1.   
Exterior - This is an inspection of the wear and tear that a dwelling endures from the elements. Example are the condition of the roof, exterior walls,  downspouts, concrete, etc., as well as the use over time by the occupants. Ask the inspector if a termite inspection is part of the overall inspection. It is a requirement of the bank.

2.
    Interior - This inspection includes all utilities, heating and air conditioning, walls and doors, window functions as well as a basement and any indications of the presence of water, dampness and possible mold. Note: Ask the inspector if they inspect all the appliances in the home). Some inspectors will not access the condition of refrigerator, washer/dryers.

3.
 Structural - An inspector will look for signs of bulges, deflections and other irregularities in the roof, walls, foundation and outside concrete and steps/platforms, etc. If found the inspector may suggest and Structural Engineer be called in to evaluate  the condition.

4.  
 Electrical - The inspector will determine the size of the service to determine if it meets the current standards and safety for the dwelling.

5.   
Plumbing  - The inspector will check the water pressure, pipes, sinks and bathroom fixtures to determine that the are in good working order and free for leaks, etc.

6.   
Heating and Air Conditioning - This is where you look out for the old clunker. The inspector will check these units for operating issues, defects, and evaluate how long they might remain in working order. The inspector may red flag anything that is harmful to the occupants, such as leaking carbon monoxide or gas leaks.

7.   
Deferred Maintenance - This speaks for itself. A poorly maintained dwelling can cost the buyer money over time, and a well kept home can save the buyer money. The inspector will tell you which you have.

8.  
 Handyman's Special - You get what you pay for. Usually sold as is, you should still have a house inspector check it out for you.

9.  
 Inspection Report -  As you travel the home with the inspector, they will point out things of interest to you. Some will wait to the end, and bring you up to date with their evaluation. In both cases you will receive a written report to review on any issues that might be found. Some inspectors print the report before you leave the home.

10.   
Conclusions from a house  inspection - A buyer can use an inspection report to educate themselves about the property they are purchasing, as well as how to approach any concerns that are important. Usually things that you seen prior to making an offer on a house when you visited the property, you already took into consideration. It's the unknowns that might be found in the house inspection that will support your offer, or you may choose to alter it. Either way, remember every house will probably have something  wrong, even a brand new one.





















          
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