Foregoing the Home Inspection
Too common occurrence
True Story; A couple buys a house without subject to Inspection this would help them clinch the purchase during a bidding war. This strategy won them the home. But a few months after moving in, the couple learned that winning the home came at a huge cost; the home's basic structures were faulty, electrical had so many alternations without permits it had to be completely replaced, the piping was a mix of galvanized piping, copper, poly B and needed to be redone, foundation had numerous issues, perimeter drains failed, house was leaning. The house had to be lifted to replace the foundation, drain tiles installed, new wiring, new piping, asbestos remediation so it needed to be taken down to the studs….
Sounds terrible, right? Well, this situation is all-too-common, although the repairs on this home were extreme. Most often, people may forego a home inspection to save a few hundred dollars, or to “win” the bid, only to run into expensive repairs at a later date. For this reason, if you're not a trained home inspector, hiring one when you put in an offer on a home can save you time, money and headaches.
Home Inspections Basics
Basically, a home inspection is a visual inspection service that can be completed on a home or building that you have offered to purchase. During the visual inspection, a licensed and trained home inspector will visually inspect your potential home over from top to bottom to give you an opinion on the visible and accessible structure, including the plumbing, ventilation, heating and cooling systems, roof and electrical. In addition, he or she will be on the lookout for any problems or issues that you may have to repair immediately or within a few years for safety reasons.
Choosing the Right Inspector
Even if you hire a licensed home inspector, there is no guarantee that he or she will catch every improvement that may need to be completed. Just like hiring any professional, there are good inspectors and there are poor inspectors. Keep in mind also that the inspection is a visual process, inspectors cannot see through walls, clutter and furnishings. One of the best ways to weed them out is to get a few recommendations. Often, realtors and banks will be able to direct you to an inspector. Additionally, asking friends and family who they used can help you narrow down your choices. Contact a few inspectors and ask for references. Choosing a Inspector with building experience on all levels of construction is most helpful.