You find the perfect property, want to buy it, and make an offer. Now, you only have a few days to inspect it, and decide it you want to close on it. Do you know what to do next?
The first thing you need is to rush so you don’t miss the inspection period. Some contracts only give you seven days, other can extend to 10 or 15 days. Choose a licensed and insured professional to do a complete inspection of the property.
An inspection is a limited non-invasive examination of a property, to verify its condition and the state of its appliances. It provides a written report of the findings and reports any grave deficiency, but it does not guarantee future performance, efficiency, or life expectancy.
The inspection verifies the condition of the structure of the real estate, and it is different from an appraisal. Even though both examine the property in a similar way, the appraisal will present a report to determine the value of the property for financing purposes.
The home inspector will check the air conditioning, faucets, electric system, and all aspects of the property looking for irregularities and items that will need fixing or maintenance. The list will give an idea of the overall condition and repair costs.
There are many companies in the market that can do an inspection. When you choose one, don’t forget to ask:
Will Your Report Meet Recognized Standards?
In the US, there are two major organizations that oversee standards of practice for home inspectors and their code of ethics. The American Society of Home Inspectors and the National Association of Home Inspectors provide the minimum state requirement for these reports.
Do You Belong to a Professional Home Inspection Association?
There are many other state and national associations for home inspectors, just as those listed above. Unfortunately, some of them confer questionable credentials in return for a membership fee. Always make sure that they are members of the ASHI and NAHI.
What is your Experience?
Even new inspectors can be be highly qualified, but they should describe their training and let you know whether they plan to work with a more experienced partner. They can bring new technologies end experiences to the job.
What is The Cost?
The costs can vary widely, and some inspectors provide additional reports for the insurance company while some can extend their services to include other reports as well.
What Type of Inspection Do You Provide?
Ask if it will be a basic report, or if it will include a wind mitigation report for the insurance company. Some companies can also do a mold inspection, can check the water quality, and provide an elevation certificate for insurance companies.
If possible, try to be present during the inspection. It might take a few hours, but you will learn a lot about the property, and know what needs to be fixed immediately and what can wait. With the results of the inspection, there will be no surprises, and you will know exactly what you are buying.
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