The Informed Buyer: The Value of a Home Inspection Before You Purchase

The excitement of buying property may distract you from important matters, like hidden physical defects of the home. Every new homeowner should know the value of home inspections, and how they should always request for one before signing the final set of documents.

The Value of a Professional Home “Check Up”

House inspections evaluate the entire property: checking the electrical systems, plumbing, HVAC systems, foundation, roofing, and anything else that has an impact on property value. Home inspections uncover details that you may not have noticed during your initial visit or final walk-through before signing the purchase contract.

Aside from checking on the structural safety of your newly purchased real estate property, a home inspection can give you leverage.

Here are some reasons you should strongly consider getting one:

The Power to Negotiate

Getting your new home inspected allows you to see any and all of the underlying problems your home might have. By finding out early, you prevent accidents from happening and avoid more expensive repairs.

Additionally, an unfavorable home inspection report can help you decide if buying that home is worth your money or not. This allows you an easy out from the contract, especially if the seller refuses to cover the needed repairs to bring the home to a perfectly safe and habitable condition.

You can ask the seller to cover the cost of repairs on the home or take the total amount off the final sale price if your new home needs repairs. So a $500,000 home with repairs amounting to $75,000 should bring the final sales price to $425,000.

Up to Code

Professional inspections can also reveal illegal additions or improper renovations on the home. A local ordinance will contain building codes that guide renovations, major repairs, and alterations. These codes secure the safety and soundness of your property; some changes or additions may require more regulation than other works.

For example, changing the doorway may not need full compliance with existing codes, but electrical work would need to meet the current standards.

Full Disclosure

Couple discussing with an agent

Most real estate agents are required by law to disclose pertinent information about the homes they’re selling. In most states, it’s illegal to knowingly cover up property defects, from termite infestation to flood-prone rooms. Some sellers take an active role in ensuring the soundness of their property before putting them on the market. And they may hire an inspector to determine internal problems, allowing them to take care of repairs.

When your agent discloses hazards and defects, you’ll be in a better position to make a choice. You’ll have the confidence to make that purchase or move ahead with another property because you know more.

A home inspection is a critical part of your big-ticket purchase. It allows you to bargain the price with the seller, learn about the structural stability of the property, and it may provide you with an easy way out of a contract. So before you make plans for your new home and sign your name, get a professional to evaluate the property.

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