Do I Really Need A Home Inspection?

By: Sylvia Smith

Do I Really Need A Home Inspection?



Buying a new home is an exciting time and when you find that perfect home you get very emotional but do not allow the emotions to overtake reason.  Make sure you do your due diligence to ensure that the home of your dreams is a sound purchase and that you will not run into serious structural challenges and expenses once you take possession and move into your dream home.

If you are indecisive on whether you should spend the extra money on a home inspection, I will make the decision really easy for you the answer should be YES.

In a seller’s market (bidding wars) it is not uncommon for buyers to forego a home inspection in order to make their offer more appealing to the seller and increase their chances of getting the home.  You may get the house, but you may also get a number of unexpected and expensive problems as well.    In these instances, I recommend that my clients complete a home inspection prior to getting into a bidding war to ensure that they do not run into unpleasant surprises when they take possession of the home.

When buyers do not complete a home inspection they are relying on the seller to disclose everything that may be wrong with the house.  This can be very risky because some sellers won’t disclose and others genuinely may not be aware that there are problems. 

Having an impartial expert evaluate the house is the best way to go and will provide you with peace of mind that there aren’t any major issues with the home.  Of course, having a home inspection will not guarantee that you will not encounter small problems once you move in as the home inspection is not perfect and they cannot see behind walls or underneath floors.  But a reputable home inspector will definitely uncover costly issues with the home.
What Does A Home Inspector Do?

Home inspection and roofs

A home inspector will evaluate the home interior and exterior structure for a number of things that may include the following:

What Does Inspector NOT Check?

It is important to be aware that Inspectors can only inspect what is visible and that they cannot see behind walls as they cannot place holes in walls or floors.  Hence, in many instances, they can only give you their best opinion on what lies in areas that cannot be inspected. So it is always important to realize that an inspection will not uncover everything that may or may not be wrong with a house.  It is wise to always have a little cash set aside just in case a surprise does later come up.
How Long Does a Home Inspection Normally Take?

How long does a home inspection take

A home inspection can typically take 2 hours to 5 hours but it all depends on the size of the home.  It is important that you are present for the home inspection so that you hear everything from the inspector as quite often you will also get recommendations and maintenance tips.  Plus being there gives you an opportunity to ask any questions that you may have. 
The inspector will provide you with an inspection report.
 Finding a Home Inspector

It is important that you hire a home inspector yourself and your real estate agent should not hire him for you. Draft Your real estate agent should be able to provide a list of inspectors to choose from but of course, you can select anyone that you feel most comfortable with.  I would strongly recommend that you interview the recommended inspectors to ensure they are experienced and have the construction knowledge and background that you would expect from an inspector.

Home inspections give the buyer peace of mind

Spending money on a home inspection is money well spent.  Quite often an inspection will uncover issues that put you in the driver’s seat and you either can decide to not proceed to firm up the offer or you can request that the seller address and repair prior to your taking possession of the home.