Do I Really Need a Home Inspector?
A home is probably one of the largest purchases that you will ever make. An evaluation from a professional home inspector can help shed light on any structural, electrical or foundation repairs that may be needed before your closing date or offer advice on preventative maintenance.
Do Your Homework
The best referral that you can get is from a trusted friend or family member. Your insurance agent might also have reliable home inspectors that they recommend. It’s also a good idea to do your homework and read reviews for home inspectors in the area.
Questions for the Interview
Ensure that the home inspector is a good fit for your needs by asking a few questions, such as:
- Do you specialize in residential or commercial property?
- Are you a part of a professional association, such as the American Society of Home Inspectors or the National Society of Professional Engineers?
- How long have you been in business?
- Do you carry Errors and omissions insurance?*
- How much do you charge?
- What is included in the inspection?
- When will you send a copy of the final report?
*Errors and omissions insurance is a type of liability insurance that protects a business from claims of negligence or failure to perform a professional service, especially for professional advice-giving or service-providing businesses. If, for any reason, a court determined that the inspector was negligent in his assessment, the insurance policy would pay the damages.
Inspection in Progress
Once you have found the best home inspector for you, it’s recommended to be present during the inspection. The majority of inspectors will allow you to tour the home with them and ask questions during or after the inspection. The inspection can last anywhere from two to five hours, depending on the size of the home.
By actively participating in the inspection, you can mitigate any surprises in the report and better understand the references and call-outs. Keep in mind that the report records the condition of the home, including positives and negatives.
Protect your new home investment by partnering with a home inspector and asking the right questions.