Before finalizing your home buying process, a home inspector should look over the property you want to buy to ensure that everything is in good shape.
Before finalizing your home buying process, a home inspector should look over the property you want to buy to ensure that everything is in good shape before you make the purchase official.
A real estate agent may be able to help you find a qualified home inspector in the area. As a buyer, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) lists several questions you should ask.
- What will this inspection actually cover?
Before the inspection gets underway, HUD recommends it’s important to go over exactly what will and will not be covered in the inspection. If you have any specific questions or items you want the inspector to check, mentioning this to them in advance is helpful.
- How much experience do you have with residential inspection?
HUD says most home inspectors should be able to tell you their history in the business to show how experienced they are, although newer home inspectors can also be qualified in the field. While it may be useful for the inspector to have a construction background, HUD notes that it’s important that they be specially trained in looking over residential properties.
- How much will it cost?
The cost of a home inspection can vary significantly based on the region, size of the home and a number of other factors, but typical costs range between $300 and $500.
- Can the home buyer be present?
Being present during a home inspection can be a valuable experience as the inspector may be able to give answers to any simple maintenance questions you may have. If the inspector says you cannot be present, it should raise a red flag about his or her qualifications.
- Can you do any repairs based on the home inspection?
If any minor problems are discovered during the inspection, you may want to know if the inspector can fix them. HUD indicates many states or trade groups don’t allow inspectors to fix problems they might find because it could be a conflict of interest.
- When will I get the home inspection report?
Most inspectors will provide a sample home inspection report so you can make sure you understand what you’re getting. Usually the full report is available within 24 hours of the initial inspection, which should allow plenty of time for a thorough review before the closing.