A home inspection is an objective visual examination of the physical structure and systems of a house, from the roof to the foundation.
Buying a home could be the largest single investment you will ever make. To minimize unpleasant surprises and unexpected difficulties, you will want to learn as much as you can about the newly constructed or existing house before you buy it. A home inspection may identify the need for major repairs or build oversights, as well as the need for maintenance to keep it in good shape. After the inspection, you will know more about the house, which will allow you to make decisions with confidence.
Typically, a home inspector is contacted immediately after the contract or purchase agreement has been signed. Before you sign, be sure there is an inspection clause in the sales contract, making your final purchase obligation contingent on the findings of a professional home inspection. This clause should specify the terms and conditions to which both the buyer and seller are obligated.
The inspection fee varies with the size and type of home being inspected. The average inspection cost is in the $400.00 to $450.00 range.
While it is not required that you be present for the inspection, it is highly recommended. You will be able to observe the inspector and ask questions as you learn about the condition of the home and how to maintain it.
Depending on the size and condition of the property, a thorough inspection will take two to three hours or more. Ideally, you will accompany your inspector during the consultation so that you will have visual reinforcement of the written report.