Part 3 – Understanding Home Inspection Process

In Part 3 of our Understanding the Home Inspection Process, we will be discussing the job of the home inspector and what a home inspector typically does during the home inspection process.

So, you have found a home inspector and set the appointment for him or her to come to your house. Now you are wondering – what exactly will the home inspector do when he gets to my house?

A home inspection can be pretty thorough. Every inch of the house will be inspected. From the crawl space or basement corners to the roofing shingles and siding, the home inspector will be looking at everything about your house.

The primary focus of a home inspector is to ensure that the overall safety of the home is intact. This means that they will focus their inspection on structural aspects. Exterior surfaces, the crawl space, basement, and roof are inspected. The plumbing, electrical and appliances are checked to see that they are within the State code and properly functioning.  The fireplace, heater and air conditioning are also inspected. It is important to note that window air conditioning units are not typically included in a home inspection.

Gutters and downspouts are inspected as well as the condition of any siding. Water heaters are also checked as well as windows. All windows must be able to be opened. Doors must be functional. HVAC vents and smoke alarms will also be inspected.  Attics are also inspected as well as the state of insulation and ventilation.

The home inspector will note any damage found and suggest a possible solution to get the house ready for sale.  It is important to understand that a home inspector checks for basic operation; they will not do testing that could cause damage or be considered excessive. If there is a particular area of concern, it is best to bring that to the attention of the home inspector before the inspection.

A typical home inspection will take between two and four hours, depending upon the size of the home and any current damage. The current condition will affect the time it takes to complete the inspection. If the homeowner is available, it is advised that he or she be present to assist with access to areas during the inspection.

With any home inspection, you can expect a long list of notes from the home inspector. This does not mean that everything must be fixed.  Typically, a few days after the inspection, the person that ordered the home inspection will receive the report.  The summary included with the report will highlight the areas of concern.  It will be up to the home seller and the homebuyer to determine what needs to be taken care of before the sale of the home commences.

A home inspection is an excellent investment in your future home. Having a home inspection can help you be sure you are getting a home that is in good condition. Though there is no home without some issues, a home inspection can ease your mind that the current condition of the home is one that is acceptable to you and ready for you to move in.

Next in our Understanding the Home Inspection Process series, Part 4 – Understanding the Report – What is Included in a Home Inspection Report.

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