What is a home inspection?
Why do I need a home inspection?
When do I call in the home inspector?
What does the inspection involve?
Should I attend the inspection?
“Would you buy this home?”
What if the report reveals problems?
How long does an inspection take?
How much does an inspection cost?
When do I pay?

What is a home inspection?
A home inspection is an objective visual examination of the physical structure
and systems of a home, from the foundation to the roof. A home inspection
is the equivalent of a physical examination from your doctor. When problems
or symptoms of problems are found, the inspector may recommend further
evaluation or remedies. Our emphasis is on identifying existing or potential
problems that would affect a purchasers buying decision.
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Why do I need a home inspection?
A home is the largest purchase most people will ever make. You should
learn as much as you can about the condition of the property and the need
for any major repairs before you buy, so that you can minimize unpleasant
surprises and difficulties afterwards.

Of course, a home inspection also points out the positive aspects of
a home, as well as the maintenance that will be necessary to keep it in
good shape. After the inspection, you will have a much clearer understanding
of the property you are about to purchase.

If you are already a home owner, a home inspection may be used to identify
problems in the making and to learn preventive measures which might avoid
costly future repairs. If you are planning to sell your home, you may
wish to have an inspection prior to placing your home on the market. This
will give you a better understanding of conditions which may be discovered
by the buyer’s inspector, and an opportunity to make repairs that
will put the house in better selling condition.
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When do I call in the home inspector?
Before you sign the contract or purchase agreement, make your purchase
contingent upon the findings of a professional home inspection. This clause
should specify the time frame of the inspection and terms to which both
the buyer and seller are obligated. Contact a home inspector immediately
after the contract or purchase agreement has been accepted. Home inspectors
are aware of the time constraints involved in purchase agreements and
most are available to conduct the required inspection within a few days.
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What does the inspection involve?
The inspector looks at the house—top to bottom, inside and outside.
Observations are explained to you as you move through the home, and a
customized computer-generated report is sent to you later that day either
via email, fax or U.S. mail. Our inspection report covers all the major
systems and structural elements of the house. This includes the condition
of the home’s heating system, air conditioning system (temperature
permitting), plumbing and electrical systems; the roof, attic space and
visible insulation, walls, ceilings, floors, windows and doors, foundation
walls, and other visible structure.
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Should I attend the inspection?
Although you do not need to be at the inspection, we recommend that you
be present. It is a valuable learning experience for most people and will
help you get the most benefit from the inspection. By following the inspector,
you can ask questions directly and the inspector can explain maintenance
tips for specific areas. Being present at the inspection may also alleviate
your concerns about findings, which on paper may seem distressing, but
in fact may be superficial. We feel you will be able to best understand
the finished report and get the most benefit from it by having been there
during the inspection.

Even if you are unable to attend the inspection in person, the inspection
report will be emailed or faxed to you. If you have questions after reading
it, you can call us for clarification or details. It is critical that
our clients understand the information in our reports, so we’re
always glad to explain why we feel something may need repair or further
evaluation. We also want our clients to have a clear picture of items
that are major issues versus maintenance issues.
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Would you buy this home?
At the end of many appointments, the first question often asked by our
clients is “Would you buy this home?” At this point, we explain
that we’re not in the business of purchase decision consulting.
The buy- or not-to-buy question is a personal one that our clients have
to answer for themselves. The inspector describes the home’s physical
condition and indicates what may need repair or replacement.
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What if the report reveals problems?
No house is perfect. When the inspector identifies problems, it does not
necessarily mean that you should not buy the house, only that you will
know in advance what to expect. A seller may adjust the purchase price
or contract terms if major problems are discovered during an inspection.
If your budget is tight, or if you do not want to be involved in future
repair work, this information will be extremely valuable.
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How long does an inspection take?
The time will vary depending on both the size and condition of the home.
For most homes, it typically takes two and a half to three hours.
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How much does an inspection cost?
Inspection fees for a typical single family home are based on total square
feet. The fee for an average single family home is $340 to $420. Do not
let the cost deter you from having a home inspection or selecting an inspector
you are comfortable with. The knowledge gained from an inspection is well
worth the time and expense. The inspector’s qualifications, including
experience, training, and professional affiliations, should be the most
important consideration in your selection.
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When do I pay?
Payment is due at the time of the inspection. We accept cash, check, money order or credit card. There is a 3% surcharge for credit card transactions. (Unlike some fees, private inspection fees are not paid at closing.)
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