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Demystifying Home Inspections: What They Look For and Why They Matter

A home inspection provides the buyer with a final chance to identify any issues with the house before making a purchase. Additionally, it offers the seller an opportunity to address these issues and negotiate the pricing with the buyer. But that begs the question, what is looked at during a home inspection? That is what we will be discussing in this blog. 

What is a Home Inspection? Why is it Important?

why are home inspections important

A home inspection is a crucial step in the process of buying or selling a property. It is a comprehensive examination of a house’s condition, conducted by a professional home inspector who assesses various components such as the structure, electrical systems, plumbing, HVAC, and more. The primary goal of a home inspection is to provide a detailed, unbiased report on the property’s condition.

For buyers, a home inspection offers a clear picture of the house’s strengths and weaknesses, enabling them to make informed decisions. Uncovering any potential issues or hidden defects can help buyers negotiate repairs, lower prices, or even opt out of the purchase if the problems are too significant. It protects buyers from unexpected and costly surprises after they’ve moved in.

Sellers also benefit from home inspections, as they can proactively address any issues that might deter potential buyers or negatively impact the sale price. This allows them to make necessary repairs or adjustments to present the property in its best possible condition, ultimately leading to a smoother and more attractive sale.

Keeping the purchase contingent on a home inspection is crucial for both parties. It ensures transparency and fairness in the transaction, preventing buyers from getting stuck in a money pit and sellers from losing potential buyers due to undisclosed issues. A home inspection promotes trust, provides a basis for negotiation, and ultimately safeguards the interests of all parties involved in the real estate transaction. In actuality, it’s a small investment that can save buyers and sellers significant time, money, and stress in the long run.

What do Home Inspections Look For?

interior home inspection

Exterior Components

The first impression of a home is its exterior. A home inspector will examine various external elements, including:

  • Roof: Inspectors check the condition of the roof, looking for signs of damage, leaks, or missing shingles. They also assess the state of gutters and downspouts.
  • Siding and Exterior Finishes: The inspector assesses the condition of the home’s siding, stucco, or brick to identify any cracks, rot, or other issues.
  • Foundation: They inspect the foundation for cracks, water damage, or signs of settling. A solid foundation is crucial for the stability of the entire structure.
  • Windows and Doors: The condition, functionality, and sealing of windows and doors are examined for air leaks, moisture intrusion, and security.
  • Driveways and Walkways: The condition of driveways, walkways, and other paved surfaces is assessed for cracks, unevenness, and overall safety.
  • Decks and Porches: The sturdiness and condition of the outside decks and balconies will be assessed for overall usability and safety. 

Interior Components

Once inside the home, the inspector evaluates a wide range of interior components, including:

  • Plumbing: Inspectors check for leaks, water pressure, and drainage issues. They assess the condition of pipes, fixtures, and water heaters.
  • Electrical Systems: Electrical outlets, switches, and the electrical panel are inspected to ensure they meet safety standards and function correctly.
  • HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning): The HVAC system, including the furnace and air conditioning units, is examined for proper operation, safety, and maintenance.
  • Structural Components: Walls, ceilings, and floors are assessed for signs of water damage, cracks, or other structural issues.
  • Attic and Insulation: The condition of the attic, roof structure, and insulation is checked for proper ventilation and insulation levels.
  • Appliances: Home inspectors often test major appliances, such as the stove, refrigerator, dishwasher, and microwave, to ensure they are in working order if included in the offer.
  • Basements: The foundation and condition of the basement are assessed for cracks, condensation, discoloration, or anything else that could jeopardize the structure or safety. 

Safety Features

Ensuring the safety of the home’s occupants is a top priority. Home inspectors look at safety features, including:

  • Smoke Detectors and Carbon Monoxide Alarms: The functionality and placement of these devices are evaluated to ensure they are protecting the home’s occupants.
  • Staircases and Railings: Staircases and railings are inspected to confirm they meet safety standards and are secure.

Environmental and Structural Issues

Home inspectors also check for potential environmental and structural issues, including:

  • Mold and Mildew: Inspectors look for signs of mold and mildew in damp or humid areas. Extensive mold growth can be a health hazard.
  • Pest Infestations: Signs of pest infestations, such as termites or rodents, are noted.
  • Radon and Asbestos: If radon or asbestos is a concern in the area, inspectors may test for their presence.

To learn more about what specific items may be looked at during an inspection visit our Home Inspection services page. 

Who Pays For a Home Inspection?

A professional house inspection is usually paid for by the buyer. However, while making an offer, some people insist that the seller pay. Before listing their houses for sale, some sellers get their own home inspection. This can reassure potential buyers. It might also provide the owner the opportunity to address issues before marketing the property.

An average home inspection costs between $350 and $500 depending on the location and property. *This range is only an estimate of average pricing and shouldn’t be used to determine actual pricing, please consult a professional home inspection company to get accurate pricing. 

Money-Back Guaranteed Home Inspections

Here at Wall to Wall Home Inspection Services LLC, we are committed to your complete satisfaction. The top priority of our certified inspectors is ensuring that you are fully informed about every inch of your new home. 

To ensure your satisfaction, we ask that you be present during the inspection and walk through the house with us. Your real estate agent is also welcome to join us for the inspection, as any issues discovered may affect the price of the home. We’re happy to answer any of your questions along the way as well.

We guarantee you’ll be happy with our inspection upon completion of the walk-through. If you aren’t for any reason, you don’t pay for it. Contact us today to schedule your home inspection! 

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