With April being National Home Inspection Month, there’s no better time than now to discuss the importance of home inspections. No matter if you’re the buyer or seller, the home inspection process will be an important part of the real estate transaction and you should understand the ins and outs.
Why Are Home Inspections Important?
As a buyer, aside from walking through the home, you may know very little about the home’s history, systems, and structure when going into the homebuying process. There are a lot of things you may not even think to ask the current owners, which is where the home inspection comes into play. A home inspector is a licensed professional who will carefully scrutinize details of the home from top to bottom – the roof, foundation, structure, electrical, HVAC, plumbing, and more. He or she knows what to look for and will ensure that the home is safe and sound for new owners to take occupancy.
What Do Inspectors Look For?
It’s important to note that home inspectors do visual inspections; that is, they do not do things like pull back flooring or cut into walls, etc. That said, they occasionally point out critical issues that can be addressed with a specialist before the buyer moves forward with purchasing the home. Specifically, a home inspector will carefully review the following, according to the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI):
- Central air conditioning
- Heating system
At a minimum, inspectors will review and inspect all of the items above. Some inspectors are even more meticulous and will point out additional concerns or details found during their inspection process. Upon reviewing or testing these items, the inspector will compile a formal report with the findings to be shared with both the seller and buyer.
How Do Home Inspections Impact Me?
If you’re planning to buy a home, the inspection is a key component that will help you make an informed decision. After all, a home purchase is quite possibly one of the most significant financial transactions you’ll make in your life, so it’s important to ensure you’re making a smart move for your future. Additionally, if you will be taking out a mortgage on the home, your lender will want a home inspection done to ensure the home is structurally safe and sound. Lenders don’t want you to be blindsided by serious problems that are too costly to repair and could put you at risk of defaulting on the home.
Once the inspection process is complete, the findings will be shared with both the buyers and the sellers of the home. The two parties will be able to discuss and negotiate repairs based on the inspection report and come to an agreement. In some cases, real estate contracts fall through at this point in the process, whether it’s because there are too many issues or because the buyer and seller simply can’t agree on all of the requested repairs.
In any case, as a buyer, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain by getting the home inspected before buying! It’s important to know what you’re getting into, so you’ll be prepared and informed before making such a large purchase.
At C&F Mortgage, our team is focused on you and all of your homeownership goals. Let our local industry experts guide you through the home buying process from start to finish – get started with us today!