Buying a home is underrated. It is stressful, time consuming and drains your bank account. While a home inspection does take up a small fraction of your time and does come at a small price, we promise it is not meant to be an additional burden. Check out our 10 reasons why a home inspection is worth EVERY PENNY and more!
10.) Budget for the Future
Homes require up keep. Even if you’re buying a brand-new home there will still be annual maintenance. A home inspector will teach you what these things are so surprise expenses are limited. Furthermore, a good home inspector will provide you with an estimate of how long many of the components in your new home will last. Budgeting less than a hundred dollars a month may be a far easier pill to swallow than the full $2,000-$5,000 HVAC system five years down the road. TIP: It could save you hundreds of dollars when having a system such as your furnace or A/C replaced in an off season such as spring or fall as opposed to a holiday weekend in the middle of winter.
9.) Full Systems Check of the Home
One of the most common things that I find not functioning in a home is the stove’s burners. Just having a repair person come out will cost $75+ plus the cost of parts and labor. Just one non-functioning stove burner could cost as much as the home inspection you skipped out on. Just because something looks in good shape means nothing if you don’t check it. A furnace running while the A/C is on in the middle of summer means nothing if the burner in the furnace doesn’t work. If something is missed, just a few months into owning the home you will be spending hundreds or thousands repairing it. A good home inspection will catch these things.
8.) Building Issues
The most common question I get asked is, “Is that code.”?” My answer is always the same, “I am not a code inspector, I am most concerned with two things; does it work and is it safe?” This may be one of the best arguments for a new construction inspection. Even if you are using the most reputable builder in your area there is no guarantee they won’t miss something. It is also important to remember there is a big difference between building inspectors and home inspectors. You are our client and it’s our job to look out for you. A building inspector looks at many houses every day and does not do a fully encompassed inspection of every component. Does a closed permit ensure the inspector fully checked the furnace and A/C? Or does it simply mean they were installed to code? Is the building inspector going to fill your brand-new whirlpool tub and run it or just see if the wiring and plumbing was done properly? Home inspectors ensure your first day in your new home goes off without a hitch.
7.) Tool for Negotiation
Your two best tools in the negotiation process are a good real estate agent and a good home inspection. There are many things a home inspection can help you to negotiate. You may wish to have the seller make repairs to issues prior to closing. Perhaps you would rather just have the price of the home lowered and make the repairs yourself. Many times, it may be a combination of both. More importantly, a home inspection may help you get out of a contract you are no longer happy with. Perhaps major problems were found. Heck, perhaps you are just no longer happy with the home. It’s the last thing a seller would want to hear, but given how your offer was written, even a small issue may give you that power. Having a home inspection may give you the edge you need to negotiate a fair deal.
This is something I very commonly explain to clients when talking about radon. A great example is a home where you have no intention of finishing the basement or spending time down there. You decide not to get a radon test. A few years down the road you decide to sell and the new family intends to spend time in the basement. They get a radon test and find the levels to be high. Now, you as the seller, are stuck with the bill for putting a radon mitigation system in. Going forward, you will have no choice but to inform other potential buyers about the high radon readings. The home inspection is your one chance to catch these problems before they become yours. This is a particularly strong case for Pre-Inspections. While you will have to make repairs regardless, doing so on your own terms may be far cheaper and less stressful.
5.) The Bigger Picture
After a home inspection, it will be up to you to decide how big or small the problems are. The inspector is simply there to find the issues and educate you about them so you may make an informed decision. The inspector will give you the tools and knowledge to take a list of issues and prioritize them for yourself. This helps when negotiating later on and when preparing a to-do list once you own the home. One thing I often find myself doing is helping clients keep the bigger picture in mind. Something that may be a small issue can seem quite large if you don’t understand it. I have seen people who are in love with a home panic over small nuisances. We see these issues every day and that is why it is important for the home inspector to help you fully understand the problems and how to resolve them. You will be able to make your decisions like a pro and be confident in whatever you decide.
Home inspectors check for much more than whether a roof is leaky or not. While you may think you found all the issues in a home during your showing, it is very doubtful you had the tools to check everything. There are many safety issues in a home that are only detectible by using equipment; Radon, Mold, Asbestos, and Carbon Monoxide are just a few. While some of these may require additional testing outside of a normal home inspection, the inspector can help you determine whether they are necessary or not. No one else will look or test for these silent killers. Home inspections ensure your family's safety.
Education is one of the most important aspects of a home inspection, especially for 1st time home owners. Even if you're an experienced home buyer, every home is different. You may know all there is to know about furnaces, but your new home may have a heat pump. What are air exchangers and why do many new homes have them? How often does a furnace filter need to be changed? A good home inspector will answer these questions and many more. This will ensure you will be the master of your new home and never miss a thing.
2.) Saves You Money
It takes money to save money. Just about every other thing on this list has something to do with saving you money. Even the smallest repairs on a home can cost thousands of dollars. A small amount of mold in the attic can cost well over a thousand dollars to remediate. If an inspector catches just one small thing, it can easily cover the cost of the inspection. With nearly every inspection I do, I can guarantee I find issues that would cost more than what I charged for the inspection. Since this is your one opportunity to negotiate with the seller to get repairs made or lower the price, don’t let a few hundred dollars cost you thousands down the road.
1.) Peace of Mind
At the beginning of every inspection, I ask clients if they have any concerns or worries about the home. Most often buyers list things like the roof being old or a foundation that has a small crack in it. Sometimes these are true problems, sometimes not. At the end of your home inspection you should feel confident that you have a complete list of all defects with the home. You should have the knowledge to prioritize these issues and make sound judgments of their severity. You’ve decided the home is right for you. The home inspection ensures you know the home is safe and will function as you hoped. A home is supposed to be your oasis. A home inspection is the one thing that ensures your dream home does not turn into a nightmare.