20 Things You Should Know About Your Home Inspection

The home inspection is a crucial part of home buying and selling. But do you really know what home inspectors do? Or if a house could fail an inspection? We’ve compiled the most commonly asked questions about home inspections, and asked professionals to answer them. This is all you need to know about home inspections.

What is a Home Inspection?

You could spend thousands on repairs and even buy an unsafe house without a thorough inspection.

This is a list of all the elements of a home that should be inspected.

Foundation: The inspector will inspect the foundation to check for cracking or shifting and to make sure that water is properly draining from the basement and foundation.

Lot: The lot will be evaluated for drainage and proper grading. Also, the quality of the walkways and driveways will be checked.

Roof: The roof will be examined for damaged flashing or shingles, water damage and general integrity.

Exterior The exterior siding, windows and doors will all be evaluated to determine their general wear and condition.

Attic: The attic will need to be inspected in order to make sure it is adequately ventilated.

Interior The interior of your home will be examined. This includes wall outlets, lighting fixtures and walls.

Basement: The basement is inspected for water damage and leaks. Basements can also be susceptible to water damage and mold.

Electrical Your home inspector will ensure that all electrical outlets and switches work.

Plumbing: The functionality of all plumbing systems will also be examined, including water pressure, hot/cold water, and functionality of all sinks and bathtubs.

Appliances Major appliances will be tested for functionality and verifiable

HVAC The furnace will be inspected for its integrity and any wear or cracks. A test of air conditioners and air ducts will be performed.

Why is a home inspection necessary?

It is recommended to hire a certified home inspector if you plan to purchase or sell a house. This is a great way to find out the condition of your home and possibly gain more negotiation power when you sell or buy it.

Any unusual or outlandish features should be noted when you tour a house. It is important to note any damage that may be visible. While it may not seem like a big deal now, it could become a costly fix in the future.

These issues do not have to be a deal-breaker. If you are the buyer, they can help you negotiate a lower price. A majority of home buyers agree that it is worth spending a few hundred dollars to have a home inspection. This will allow you to save several thousand in the long-term.

What is the cost of a home inspection

Our data, based on over 80,000 home inspections in the past year, shows that an average home inspection costs $358.

Variables that can affect the cost of the project include:

  • Location/region/travel time
  • The home’s size
  • Age of your home
  • What is the temperature of the local realty market?
  • How many inspectors are there in the area, and how busy they can be
  • Additional services include mold inspections and radon testing

The US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), gives an average price range of $300-$500. However, it cautions that not all prices reflect quality.

Do your research. Look at the site and read the reviews about the inspector your agent recommended. Ask for a quote from them, as well as a few others. Don’t just focus on price or cost.

A Good Home Inspector in St Augustine, FL, is worth the cost. A home inspection can help you get the seller to do more repairs or set your budget expectations. It is one of your best investments in your new home.

Why can’t I do a home inspection myself?

There are many factors to consider when buying a house. The tasks of negotiating the price and understanding the resale market value can seem overwhelming.

When buying a used vehicle, people often go to their mechanics. Why not turn to a home inspector if you are spending hundreds of thousands on a house?

Professional home inspections can uncover issues that would otherwise go unnoticed. For example, the incorrectly hung cabinet could pose a danger if it is hung too high.

The job of a home inspector is not to make you feel miserable. They are your advocate. We are confident that your realtor did a wonderful job showing you the features of the house and explaining the school district. However, they won’t be able to tell you much about the structure or the utilities.

The home inspector can help you see the important information you didn’t know about until you bought the house.

What is a home inspection?

A home inspection is recommended prior to buying a house. It is often the biggest purchase most people will ever make. Although there are some quirks that can be overlooked, there could be more serious problems that only a professional inspector can identify.

A home inspection is essential to ensure that you don’t end up spending thousands on repairs and buying unsafe properties. Certified home inspections should include the lot, foundation, roof, attic, interior and basement as well as electrical, plumbing, appliances and heating/cooling systems. These inspections are designed to find safety-related flaws and structural problems in major systems.

Is a house able to pass a home inspection?

Contrary to popular belief, there is no pass/fail or grade system for home inspections. The home inspector evaluates the quality and condition of the house objectively and informs the seller and buyer of their findings.

If a serious problem is discovered, the seller could be held responsible for fixing it before the house can be legally sold. The seller may be held responsible if asbestos or mold are found in their home, or if there is any code violation or other safety concern, before they can sell their home.

Buyers may also be allowed to invoke the home inspection contingency, and then walk away from the transaction if there is a major problem.

Are you curious about the most common problems found in a home inspection. Here’s a quick list.

  • Roof and gutter problems (leakage, damaged or clogged gutters etc.
  • Faulty wiring/electrical issues
  • Poor drainage or grading around the home
  • Basements that are damp or contaminated with mold/mildew
  • Cosmetic wear and tear (peeling wallpapers, stained/damaged carpets or cracked driveways/walkways)
  • Leakage, blocked drains and poor flow are all plumbing issues.
  • Inadequate ventilation and insulation
  • HVAC problems

Home inspection findings can be helpful in negotiating a fair rate for your home, regardless of whether you are a buyer or seller.

When should I call a home inspector

Before you make an offer on any home, it is a good idea to have a home inspection. You should have the inspection done before you make an offer on a house. If the inspection reveals major problems you cannot afford or are unwilling to fix, you can still withdraw from the purchase of the house.

It is best to have a home inspection completed before you make an offer. Even if you offer the house, make sure you have it inspected before you close the deal. Otherwise, you’ll be responsible for any issues that might arise.

Do I need to be present when the home inspection takes place?

It’s a good idea for you to stay for the pre-listing inspection if you are selling your house. This will give you an insight into what needs to be fixed before you list your home. If the inspector was hired by the buyer, you don’t need to be there.

It’s not necessary to attend the home inspection if you are buying a house. However, it is a good idea. The home inspection of a property that you are considering purchasing is a great way to gain a better understanding of its condition and any potential problems. These items will be visible in the report. However, it is possible to walk through the house with an inspector to better understand the details.

You can also ask questions of the inspector by being present at the home inspection. Ask about the most costly parts of your home, such as:

  • Roof: Changing a roof can be costly.
  • Insulation. insulation can have a significant impact on your power bills
  • Electrical system. Rewiring a house can be a costly task.
  • Plumbing: problems with plumbing can be extremely costly to fix
  • HVAC Systems: These systems typically need to be replaced every 10-15years
  • Structure If there are any structural problems, don’t buy this home.
  • Drainage/Grading: foundation damage can be caused by poor grading or drainage

What happens if the home inspection report uncovers problems?

You can either cancel the sale if you discover serious problems, or ask the seller to correct the problem before you move forward with the purchase.

Except for repairs that address serious safety concerns or structural defects, the seller is not required by law to make any repairs. Examples include:

  • Code violations by federal and state laws
  • Structural and mechanical problems
  • Safety issues can be caused by defects
  • Mold
  • High radon levels
  • Infestation

Sellers don’t have to fix cosmetic defects before they can sell their house. They aren’t a danger. They may refuse to do these repairs, but you can ask them.

The seller will usually offer you a credit for repairs and lower the price of your home based on the cost of the repairs. This is often the best option for negotiating, as some home repairs such as repairing a roof can take several weeks, which can make it very difficult for the buyer and seller.

How long is an inspection typically taken?

The average time it takes for a home to be inspected is two to three hours. However, there aren’t any set standards. This process may take longer for larger homes or homes that have additional features. However, it can take less time for smaller homes and condos.

These are just a few of the factors that can impact how long it takes to do a home inspection.

  • The home’s size
  • Age of the property
  • To be inspected all systems (HVAC and electrical, water heaters, pool, multiple kitchens, etc.).
  • Accessibility to areas that require inspection
  • Weather conditions
  • Requirements for each state
  • Answering questions of clients during inspection
  • There are one or more inspectors at the site
  • Additional services such as radon, mold, and water testing are available.

You shouldn’t rush to get through a home inspection. This is an important step in home-buying and will confirm the value of your investment.

What is included in the home inspection report

A home inspection report can be a valuable tool. It will provide you with a wealth of information about your home and expose potential problems. So, what’s included?

The home inspector will inspect the roof for damage including shingles, skylights and chimneys. A general grade will be given to the roof’s condition.

The home inspector will inspect the operation and condition of insulation and ventilation in crawl spaces and attics.

You will need to walk the entire exterior of the property. Also, you should inspect the following:

  • Siding
  • Windows
  • Exterior doors and locks
  • Trimming and flashing
  • Walkways
  • Driveways
  • Stairs
  • Patios
  • Decks
  • Drainage systems
  • Foundation and basement

The home inspector will inspect the HVAC systems using a fine-toothed brush. He or she will check for leaks, correct operation, temperature locations, and evidence that proper maintenance has been done.

Leaky valves and busted pipes can cost thousands of dollars to repair. Your home inspector will inspect the plumbing in the house and check for leaks, venting, hot water heater operation, and other issues.

Home inspectors will also spend considerable time inspecting potentially dangerous areas of your home.

How can I tell if a home inspector has the right qualifications?

These are some of the things you should consider when searching for a qualified inspector for your home.


Most home inspectors have a license from the state where they are working. Check to see if complaints have been filed against an inspector who is state-regulated.

Also, check to see if the inspector holds any other credentials such as:

  • InterNACHI, International Association Of Certified Home Inspectors
  • American Association Of Home Inspectors (ASHI).
  • The National Academy of Building Inspection Engineers, (NABIE).
  • The All American Association of Home Inspectors, (AAAHI).
  • The North American Association of Home Inspectors, (NAAHI).


Some states do not require home inspector certification or licensing. It’s a smart idea to read reviews if you are looking for a home inspection in any of these states. Google and Yelp are better than the inspector’s site where you can delete negative reviews.

What Do They Look Like?

You should conduct thorough home inspections. This means that you need an inspector who is willing to go the extra mile. You will get the best results if an inspector can inspect every aspect of your home, including the foundation and plumbing, as well as the attic and electrical systems. A sample report is also recommended so that you can see what you will get.

Do inspectors need to be trained in residential structures?

General home inspectors are trained and certified to inspect residential properties. Although inspectors are more likely to focus on one area, others may specialize in both.

A property inspector who specializes in residential inspections does not necessarily mean that you need to hire them. A property inspector who is skilled in one area does not necessarily mean that they are superior to others who may offer other services.

You can start by doing a quick internet search to locate a list home inspectors in your local area. Then, dig deeper to find one that you trust based upon their credentials and reviews.

To get more information, call a few inspectors before you make your final decision. To ask any questions, schedule a telephone interview.

  • What is the cost of an inspection?
  • What time can you come to my house?
  • What length of time have you worked in the industry?
  • Are you covered by insurance?
  • What happens if something is lost?
  • What time will it take to receive the inspection report after the inspection?

Ask for a copy their standard home inspection checklist and a sample report. This will help you to understand what will be included in the inspection and what won’t. Some home inspections will not include inspections of pools, chimneys, irrigation systems, sewer scopes, asbestos, lead radon, mold, and termite inspections. You may have to hire additional professionals or pay extra fees to have these systems checked.

What’s the difference between an appraiser and a home inspector?

A home inspection and appraisal are essential parts of any home purchase or sale. Your home is a significant investment. Although appraisals and inspections may seem the same, they are very different.

An appraisal is a method of pricing a house based on certain factors such as:

  • The location of your home
  • Close proximity to schools and other public facilities
  • The lot’s size
  • The home’s size and condition
  • Comparable properties sold at recent sales prices

An appraiser’s main goal is to protect the lender from overpriced properties. An appraisal is necessary before you can obtain a mortgage on your house. Although they don’t do a thorough inspection of your home, appraisers may notice signs of neglect. Cracked walls, cracked paint, broken windows, and damaged flooring are all examples.

A home inspection provides a more detailed overview of your property. While an appraisal is mandatory in order to obtain a mortgage, an inspection can be a more thorough overview of your home. The home inspector inspects the entire home and looks for potential problems that could affect the buyer’s investment. The appraiser has a duty to protect the lender but the home inspector’s primary purpose is to protect the buyer from a bad purchase.

What’s the process for a home inspector?

A home inspection is an essential part of purchasing a house. A home inspection is an important part of buying a home. Without it, you may end up spending thousands on repairs or purchasing a house with foundation problems or water damage.

Buyers are encouraged to accompany the inspector during the inspection and ask any questions. The inspector will usually give the client a summary of the findings after the inspection is complete. Within a few days, most home inspectors will provide a detailed inspection report in PDF or web-based format. Most home inspectors will be happy to answer your questions about the report.

Do I require a home inspection to inspect a new construction?

You can be sure that your newly constructed home will have all the modern comforts and energy-saving features you could want. It’s a good idea, however, to have a home inspection on any home that has been built.

Sometimes there may be unresolved problems or poor workmanship. A home that is new does not necessarily mean it was built to the highest standards of workmanship. There could be serious plumbing issues, a problem with the roof, or with the chimney.

These problems can be missed if the home is not inspected. A single mistake or careless contractor can cause major damage. You may find that the home is not up to standard.

Only building inspectors need to sign off on the construction and ensure that it meets code. These inspectors are not employed by you. They work for the county. They only check that the house is in compliance with any building codes. They’ll approve it if the house meets minimum standards.

A home inspector is required to take a deep look at the systems of your home. You are taking unnecessary risks if you don’t hire a home inspector.

Can a home still be inspected when it is covered in snow?

Home inspectors can face challenges when dealing with snow. These areas include the AC unit, roof and proper drainage.

The winter inspection can be done in all other areas. However, it might bring up more problems that were not apparent if it was done during warmer months. Extreme weather conditions can cause stress and damage to homes that are only visible to trained professionals. If the damage is not noticed, it can quickly escalate into an emergency situation when the seasons change.

Pipes that have cracked or frozen beneath the house can cause slow leaks and water intrusion. These failures can be difficult to detect during winter due to the freezing temperatures. In spring, pipes and sprinkler systems that have not been winterized properly could prove costly.

You can’t have certain systems tested in winter. However, it is possible to include this in your home purchase contract. You can ask the seller to “reserve for repairs in uninspected areas”, which can be negotiated and agreed upon by buyers.

Are home inspectors allowed to inspect fences, pools, and other structures outside?

Basic home inspections are not designed to provide a comprehensive view of all areas, including fences and pools. It is important that every part of the house purchase be given the same attention, especially if it has a pool or other unusual feature. This means that you should consult a professional who is familiar with these features and the potential hazards. These areas may be covered by your home inspector for an additional charge or referred to you by someone else.

ASHI’s Standards of Practice section 4.2, E states that “the inspector is not required not to inspect out-buildings other then garages and carports”. Some home inspectors include outbuilding inspections in their home inspection, while others offer it as an optional service. It’s up to the inspector to decide what local regulations apply. Local regulations may require that every building be inspected. The inspector must follow these rules and include them in the home inspection.

Can home inspectors advise me whether I should purchase the house?

A home inspector will not necessarily advise you on whether to purchase a house. However, they can give you an objective opinion about the condition of the property so you can make your own decision. While a home inspector can tell you whether an expensive repair is necessary, every situation is unique so it may not be a deal-breaker. Some buyers may be looking for a great deal on a fixer upper.

These are some common home inspection deals that can be broken:

  • Foundation issues : Foundation problems can be costly. They can cost thousands of dollars for large houses with serious problems.
  • Old wiring: This can lead to fire and safety hazards.
  • Termite infestation. Although termites can be removed and the home protected from their return, it is important to take into account the structural damage they have already caused.
  • Mold – Most molds don’t pose a health risk and can be removed easily with a special spray. However, some molds can pose serious and potentially fatal health risks.

Before I sell my house, do I need a home inspection?

Although a seller’s inspection of their home is more common than a buyer, home sellers are discovering that there are many benefits to having their home inspected before listing their home for sale.

A seller’s home inspection can reveal all potential problems before they are raised in the buyer’s inspection report. The seller can ensure that any repairs are done in a timely manner and at a lower price than what the buyer would expect to pay during negotiations.

Sellers of homes can be more realistic about their asking price depending on the problems that you wish to leave “as is.” Sellers may also include the inspection report in the disclosure statement, which reduces their liability for any additional findings.

A home inspection before selling a house is a good idea. This will allow agents and visitors to inspect the home for safety hazards. These hazards can become costly liability. A seller doesn’t want anyone to be hurt by a missing safety railing.

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