Updated: Mar 14, 2019
Purchasing a home is one of the biggest financial decisions you will make in your life. Because of this, a crucial step in your home buying process is the home inspection. Not only will a home inspection help determine the overall state of the unit, but it will also play a major factor in the selling price. A home inspection will unearth any potential issues the home may have, and many inspectors will provide you with a detailed overview of the home's maintenance needs.
A home inspection is generally performed by a licensed home inspector within one week after an accepted offer to purchase, and is frequently a contingency added to the Purchase & Sale Agreement. In some situations, a buyer can request a home inspection prior to submitting an offer. In others, while risky, a buyer might exclude a home inspection contingency in order to move quickly on a property and make his offer more attractive to the seller.
Once you find your home inspector, set a date as soon as possible and plan to meet the inspector at the property for a thorough walk-through. Many inspectors take great pride in showing the potential buyer many intricacies of a property (for example, the master water shut-off valve, the age of the furnace, the circuit panel, evidence of water incursions, masonry that requires repointing, and many more observances).
At the inspection, your professional will take roughly two to three hours to carefully walk through each room of the establishment with his inspection checklist. A home inspector will conduct a thorough review, noting discrepancies with anything structural, mechanical, and electrical. Keep in mind that while most of these professionals have an eye for detail, they cannot necessarily bring forth every issue. Pests, asbestos, and other structural hazards are not always obvious during the inspections because they require specialized evaluations. If you are looking to purchase an older home, it may be worth your investment to hire additional evaluations to ensure you are getting a fair price.
Home Inspection Checklist
While home inspectors will have their own checklists to mark off, it is important to have your own list of concerns or questions. This will ensure that the inspection meets your expectations and will help give you peace of mind when coming down to that final closing price. Being a part of this process will help you understand the major concerns and which are the quick fixes. Your inspector may even suggest home improvement options!
Here are a few areas where your home will be inspected. Make sure to add to this list as you walk-through with your inspector:
Windows and Doors
Central Air Conditioning
Radon and Natural Gas
How Much is an Inspection and Who Pays?
It is the responsibility of the potential home buyer to hire a home inspector. Depending upon the size of the property, most home inspectors in the Boston area charge $450-$600. Hire a home inspector with a great reputation for detail and thoroughness - you don’t want a home inspector who will cut corners.
Shortly after the in-person home inspection, your inspector will provide you with a thorough written account of what he discovered. Keep in mind that if the results of the home inspection are problematic enough that you wish to terminate the offer to purchase, you are still responsible for paying the home inspector.
If you are need advice on how to select a home inspector or need recommendations from home inspectors who we have worked with in the past, please drop us a line and say hi! 617.657.9811 or firstname.lastname@example.org.