Selecting a Home Inspector and When to Call in a Specialist.
by Bryan Zupan
on Tuesday, September 6th, 2016 at 5:00pm.
First - Let me just say, always attend your home inspection!When you purchase a home, there are many processes that come to mind; the pre-approval, the down payment, the offer, the contract, etc. Quite often, the home inspection can be over looked, where as it is an integral component to said process. If you would like more iformation on this topic or others Please contact us!
What you will find below are some important aspects to your home inspection based off of my experience.
After working with numerous home inspectors over the years, there have been a few that want you to know every piece of information they know. They cannot separate the major and most costly of issues from the smaller ones (think of tightening a screw on a door handle). Some of the most technical inspectors lose the personal interaction with the clients. This has the potential for them to disconnect from the clients and create a void where critical communication is important. It’s incidents such as those that can cause quite a bit of confusion, consternation and frustration.
Fortunately, I have found a home inspector that has that “it” factor. He is someone that can simplify this difficult task while keeping an open dialogue with the future homeowners. He is able to connect with my clients to really help them understand key issues and life expectancy of major systems, fixtures, and appliances. With the construction experience, he can also target ball park replacement costs. This is very helpful in any potential negotiations during the inspection contingency period. I work with my buyer clients to understand that this is really not a time to re-trade negotiated terms unless there are safety concerns or unexpected issues with the main systems of the house and/or the envelope. The main systems of the house would include the plumbing, HVAC, and the electrical systems. The envelope of the home includes the foundation, windows, roof, and would extend to such things as the grading around the house.
Items like the fireplace cannot be overlooked. One of my buyer clients was faced with a large expense to repair a chimney after closing in a situation that could have been avoided. The buyers concern was not properly vetted by the inspector and they were faced with a major repair expense. Home inspectors can run appliance serial numbers through a data base to make sure they have not been recalled.
Whether it is the fireplace, HVAC, or an electrical panel - if a buyer if has any concerns about major items it is advised that a specialist is called in to support the findings of a home inspector. Home inspectors are licensed professionals, but as a whole they are more generalists than specialists.
As a buyer, you may be at the top of your budget, where all your cash reserves slated for the down payment and closing costs, and your inspector tells you the HVAC system is 15 years old. You could be thinking that in a year you might be able to replace that system, but it’s a risk if the system fails. Even with a home warranty there is financial exposure on out of pocket costs. This is a key example of the additional input from a specialist in a specific field would help understand any immediate issues with a system beyond that.
How quickly can a home inspection be scheduled? Home inspections can usually be scheduled within 72 hours.
What is the design and format of the Home Inspection Report? The report format is an interactive PDF document. It has been designed to be highly comprehensive, but at the same time concise, easy to read, and easy to navigate. We have combined the best of the checklist and narrative style inspection reports to create a truly informative reference document for your property: Checklist Style- Helps you identify relevant information quickly and shows you the myriad of options available for home components and mechanical systems. Narrative Style- Provides specific details about areas of concern and helps you determine which deficiencies require immediate attention and which can wait.
What is included in the Home Inspection Report? The home inspection report is a clear section-by-section identification and analysis of structural and finish components of the property as well as the integral mechanical systems, equipment, and appliances. Relevant pictures are included in each section for use as visual references. We also include our availability for questions and explanations. We want you to have a complete understanding of the condition of your property and we will work with you until you do.
What is not included in the Home Inspection Report? The report findings are based on the observation and operation of the accessible components and systems of the property that are designated for inspection. The inspector is not permitted to reach, enter, or view areas, or operate any equipment, that require significantly disrupting personal items, or which may result in damage to the property or injury to the home inspector.
Are there any other reasons to have a home inspection report created for a property? Absolutely. We hope that your home inspection report becomes an essential reference guide detailing all the components that make up your home. Further, think of your report as a professionally created To-Do list for your house to keep in mind for the future. Many of the items listed you would likely never have known about otherwise. The report is yours to reference for future remodeling projects, to add on items when you have a repair person coming, or to tackle repairs yourself on an idle weekend.