Buying a home?
The process can be stressful. A home inspection is supposed to give you peace of mind but, depending on the findings, it may have the opposite effect. You will be asked to absorb a lot of information over a short period of time. Your inspection will entail a written report, including checklists and photos, and what the inspector tells you during the inspection. All of this combined with the seller's disclosure and what you notice yourself can make the experience overwhelming. What should you do?
Home inspectors are professionals, and if yours is a member of InterNACHI and ,HomeSpection® Training Institute certified then you can trust that he is among the most highly trained in the industry. Most of your inspection will be related to maintenance recommendations and minor imperfections. These are good to know about.
However, the issues that really matter will fall into four categories:
- major defects, such as a structural failure;
- conditions that can lead to major defects, such as a roof leak;
- issues that may hinder your ability to finance, legally occupy, or insure the home if not rectified immediately; and
- safety hazards, such as an exposed, live buss bar at the electrical panel.
Anything in these categories should be addressed as soon as possible. Often, a serious problem can be corrected inexpensively to protect both life and property (especially in categories 2 and 4).
Most sellers are honest and are often surprised to learn of defects uncovered during an inspection. It’s important to realize that a seller is under no obligation to repair everything mentioned in your inspection report. No house is perfect. Keep things in perspective.
And remember that homeownership is both a joyful experience and an important responsibility, so be sure to call on your InterNACHI Certified Professional Inspector® to help you devise an annual maintenance plan that will keep your family safe and your home in top condition for years to come.
Choosing the Right Home Inspector
- have to pass InterNACHI's Online Inspector Examination, and re-take and pass it every three years;
- have to complete InterNACHI's online Code of Ethics Course;
- have to take InterNACHI's online Standards of Practice Course;
- must submit a signed Membership Affidavit;
- substantially adhere to InterNACHI's Standards of Practice;
- abide by InterNACHI's Code of Ethics;
- have to submit four mock inspection reports to InterNACHI's Report Review Committee before performing their first paid home inspection for a client if the candidate has never performed a fee-paid home inspection previously;
- within the first year of membership, have to successfully pass the following free online, accredited, and self-paced courses and exams:
- InterNACHI’s "Safe Practices for the Home Inspector" course,
- InterNACHI’s "25 Standards Every Inspector Should Know" course,
- InterNACHI’s "Residential Plumbing Overview for Inspectors" course,
- InterNACHI’s "How to Perform Residential Electrical Inspections" course,
- InterNACHI’s "How to Perform Roof Inspections" course,
- InterNACHI’s "How to Inspect HVAC Systems" course,
- InterNACHI’s "Structural Issues for Home Inspectors" course,
- InterNACHI’s "How to Perform Exterior Inspections" course,
- InterNACHI’s "How to Inspect the Attic, Insulation, Ventilation and Interior" course,
- InterNACHI’s "How to Perform Deck Inspections" course,
- InterNACHI’s "How to Inspect for Moisture Intrusion" course, and
- InterNACHI’s "How to Inspect Fireplaces, Stoves, and Chimneys" course.
- have to pursue inspection-related training by taking 24 hours of additional accredited Continuing Education each year;
- have to maintain their Online Continuing Education Log (free), per InterNACHI's rigorous Continuing Education policy;
- have access to InterNACHI's Message Board for exchanging information and tips with colleagues and experts;
- have access to InterNACHI's "What's New" section so that they can keep up with the latest news and events in the inspection industry;
- have access to InterNACHI's time-tested Inspection Agreement, which keeps them (and you) away from lawsuits;
- have access to InterNACHI's Report Review/Mentoring Service;
- have to carry E&O Insurance (if their state requires it);
- have access to a real estate agent Hold-Harmless Clause;
- and have access to many other benefits, training, marketing tools and information to help themselves, as well as consumers and real estate professionals, provided for free by the world's largest inspector association.
Seller's Pre-Listing Inspection
- It allows you to see your home through the eyes of a critical and neutral third party.
- It alerts you to immediate safety issues before agents and visitors tour your home.
- It may alert you to items of immediate concern, such as radon gas or active termite infestation.
- It permits you to make repairs ahead of time.
- Defects won't become negotiating stumbling blocks later.
- There is no delay in obtaining the Use and Occupancy Permit.
- You have the time to get reasonably priced contractors or make the repairs yourself, if qualified.
- It helps you to price your home realistically.
- It may relieve prospects' concerns and suspicions.
- It may encourage the buyer to waive his inspection contingency.
- It reduces your liability by adding professional supporting documentation to your disclosure statement.