A home inspection has become a normal part of the home-buying process, but it can also be a point of stress for both buyer and seller. The home inspector's job is to evaluate the property and provide a formal report of its condition. This provides several distinct advantages to the buyer, especially in light of the modest cost involved. When clients fall in love with a home, they may believe that nothing can dissuade them from going through with the purchase. No matter how much you may want to purchase a property, however, it is important to understand exactly what you're buying.

What Home Inspectors Do

In a typical transaction, the buyer engages and pays for the home inspector. The inspection is conducted as soon as possible after the contract is executed as a part of the buyer's due diligence or inspection period. The inspector spends several hours systematically going through the house, testing every component of plumbing, HVAC and electrical systems. Appliances are also tested. The inspector conducts a visual inspection of floors, walls and ceilings, as well as the roof and attic. Each finding is noted and assembled into a formal inspection report, accompanied by photos. The inspector will make note of any items of concern, as well as those that were not accessible. In many cases, the home inspector also conducts a termite inspection; however a separate contractor may be required for this aspect of the process.

Advantages for the Buyer and Seller

The inspection report provides buyers with a clear picture of the home's condition. This gives them better insight into conditions in the home that may require immediate repair or that may need attention in the near future. It also sheds light on the accuracy of the agreed-upon purchase price. If the home is in a lesser condition than the buyer believed when making an offer, the buyer has the option of asking the seller to correct any issues he or she deems critical. For the seller, the inspection process may bring to light problems that were previously unknown. If the buyer does not ultimately go through with the purchase, the seller can anticipate what a future buyer may take exception to as well.

Is an Inspection Always Necessary?

The answer to this question is an unequivocal yes. In most transactions, the home inspection is not a deal breaker; however, if it reveals some significant structural or systems defect in the home, the buyer at least has the benefit of being able to make an informed decision. When making a real estate purchase, buyers must have the opportunity to understand all material facts about the property before deciding to proceed.

The Edie Israel Team specializes in watching out for the best interests of their clients. Whether you are buying or selling property, it is your right and obligation to arrange for your own home inspection.