In the real estate process, there are several kinds of home inspections that buyers and sellers can have done on a property. Here’s an overview of the common types, as well as tips for when to have one done.
The most common type of home inspection we see in the real estate industry is a general inspection where you hire a licensed inspector to look at all the systems and structures of a house to give a buyer a general idea of the home’s condition. Usually, a general inspection will generate multiple pages and pictures of deficiencies the inspector found, even in new houses. These issues can range from minor to major—anywhere from caulking issues to severe structural integrity issues.
The next most common inspection is a heating and air inspection, where they look at the entire HVAC system of a home to make sure it operates properly, to see when it was last serviced, and determine if any issues may come up with it once the buyer purchases it. R-22 refrigerant was outlawed a few years ago, so if you have a system that still uses it, it might need to be replaced at a big cost to you, the buyer.
In addition, there are also inspections for things such as:
If you’re looking to sell your home, should you have an inspection done?
Sellers most commonly have inspections done before they sell their home so they have an idea of the home’s condition and can anticipate any issues that the buyer’s inspector will bring up. If you don’t address any of those issues before the buyer’s inspection, the buyer will likely ask that you fix some or all of them; if the issues are big, they might back out of the contract altogether. A pre-inspection will allow sellers to get ahead of the buyers and make certain changes to ensure their home is well-received in the market.
For buyers, the only reason not to inspect a house you’re purchasing would be in a situation where you’re buying a lot with a property that you plan to plow over anyway.
Make sure that you get references for any inspector you consider hiring; don’t just pick one out of the phonebook. We’ve had buyers hire terrible inspectors, only to call us and tell us their air conditioner quit working. One of the reasons we have so many five-star reviews from past clients is that we make sure to protect them from that kind of problem. We’ll put you in touch with the best there is to offer.
If you have any questions about home inspections, whether you’re a buyer or seller, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We’d love to help you navigate the inspection process.