8 Tips to Find the Best Home Inspector
It’s a smart idea to have a professional inspect your home before you purchase it. A satisfactory inspection can be made a condition of your purchase contract. If you are not satisfied with the inspection results, you have the option to cancel the contract and get your deposit back. You can negotiate with the seller to lower the price or to fix any problems that were discovered during the inspection.
Even if you accept the house’s condition as-is, a home inspection will provide valuable insight into the property and help you plan for future repairs and maintenance.
Reuben Saltzman is co-owner and president at Structure Tech Home Inspections. A good inspection should provide enough information to allow you to make an informed decision.
You will get the best home inspection experience if you are there for the whole time. It can take anywhere from two to four hours depending on the size and condition of your home.
Nick Gromicko is the founder of International Association of Certified Home Inspectors. He says, “There are many things you want to inquire at the time of inspection.” You can measure the windows to make curtains if you get bored.
Although a home inspector will not give you a specific estimate for repairs he or she will usually be able to advise you on the size of the job.
A home inspection in most areas costs $300-$600. Prices vary depending on the area and the age of the house. This does not include any specialized inspections. You may need to have inspections done for radon and mold, septic systems, foundations and wood-destroying organisms. These inspections are likely to be more expensive. These inspections can be done by a home inspector for an extra fee. Other times, a specialist inspector will be recommended.
Ask the inspector how long it will take for the report to be completed after the inspection. Some inspectors will give you the report right away, while others may require you to wait while they write it up. Others will email it within a few days. It is crucial to choose the right timing because inspection deadlines are included in most contracts.
Your realty agent will likely give you names of one or two home inspectors. This is a great place to start. Interview these inspectors and look at their websites. You can also check their reviews on Angie’s List and Yelp. Other good sources of referrals are mortgage professionals, friends, and colleagues who have recently purchased homes.
The American Society of Home Inspectors has specific training requirements and a code of ethics. You can search its website for inspectors by location to find them. To maintain their membership, members of the non-profit organization must pass an exam and continue education. The National Association of Home Inspectors also has similar requirements. They also offer an online search function.
InterNACHI members must pass an exam to become certified and follow professional standards. They offer free continuing education online for inspectors and homeowners, as well as several useful booklets and an online forum for consumers to ask questions. InterNACHI also offers online referrals for members inspectors.
These are eight ways you can find the best home inspector in st. Augustine, fl, and get the most from your inspection.
Find an inspector who is willing to have you there throughout the inspection. Rather than simply showing up at the end of the inspection, Saltzman suggests that clients bring their clients along. I don’t believe clients get as much from the inspection if they do so.
Request a sample report. Saltzman states that any great home inspector should have his or her home inspection reports on a website. Check to see if the reports have clear writing and are properly formatted. Saltzman states that a report should clearly identify the defect and explain why it is important. Then, suggest how to fix it. Photos are an important part of all good reports.
Check out reviews on Angie’s List and Yelp. Call past clients to get references. To ensure accuracy, you must also read online comments the inspector does not control.
Find out if the inspector is part of any professional organizations such as ASHI, NAHI or InterNACHI. This doesn’t guarantee quality but does show professionalism and training.
Discuss experience and certifications What number of inspections has the inspector done? Have they taken any specialized courses? Hire someone who inspects the entire house and not just as a part-time job.
Find out what items will not be included and how you can find out their condition. Exterior features such as roofs, patios, driveways and patios cannot be inspected if they have been covered in snow.
Request copies of insurance and license documents. Although not required by all states, many require home inspectors be licensed. Licenses may be required by some municipalities. A qualified home inspector will give copies of his/her license and proof that insurance.
Find out if the inspector is available to do any ancillary inspections. Ask the inspector if they can inspect your home if it has a septic system or foundation problems.