Last Updated on September 6, 2022
Most homebuyers would agree that the home inspection on a potential purchase is probably the most important part of the process.
The goal is to expose any major issues with the property prior to acquisition, to either ask for repairs prior to closing, or to update the offer to consider the financial impact in making the repair(s) yourself.
What some buyers may not know is that there are multiple inspections that should be considered, not just the general inspection.
But first, one important reminder regarding any type of inspection:
It must be completed by an inspector that is licensed and in good standing with the licensure board in your area.
You want someone qualified that can give you a thorough and accurate analysis of the property’s condition.
Now, let’s talk about the different types of inspections you should consider when purchasing your next home!
Not every home needs every type of inspection, but this should provide great guidance to narrow it down for you.
The inspection of the roof should happen in the general inspection. If the notes from the inspector mention any type of wear and tear or other issues with the roof, you should consider getting a roof inspection done by a roofing contractor. This will give that added peace of mind, because roof repairs can add up down the road.
Lead–based paint inspection
If the home was built prior to 1978, you should receive a lead warning disclosure from the seller, this does NOT always mean that the home is safe and free of lead-based paint, so review that disclosure in detail.
It would be in your best interest to have a lead-based paint inspection completed. You can contact your local EPA to find an inspector that specializes in this.
This radioactive gas is often found in crawlspaces or foundations in homes. It has been connected to lung cancer, so it should be taken seriously to prevent any unnecessary exposure. Most general inspections include this test, but if not, you can find a qualified specialist through the National Radon Safety Board.
Some homebuyers aren’t aware that most homes have some amount of mold in them. Moisture and that perfect temperature are notorious for creating mold in homes.
If you feel the home is at risk of excessive mold, or see any signs, i.e., that mold-like smell, or any dark spaces that bring suspicion, we recommend you investing in this type of inspection.
Right before the 1980’s asbestos was used in home building- you could find it in the roof, the pipes, and even the insulation of a home. That substance was later linked to various types of cancer.
If your home was built prior to the 1980’s we highly recommend getting an inspection done. An asbestos abatement company would be your go-to for this inspection type.
So you’re looking at a house with a pool? Are we invited?
Pools are usually not thoroughly considered in a general inspection; this beautiful amenity needs its own special attention. As a potential homebuyer, you want to confirm the structure of the pool is sound, as well as the safety features on the pool. Your realtor can provide guidance on the best inspector for this job.
Your general inspection should review the electrical readiness of your home.
If the general inspection yields anything “off” about the electrical capacity in the home, you will want to get a reputable electrician out to complete an inspection for you. Electrical issues can become costly so it would be a wise decision to address prior to purchase.
Did you know the average cost to replace an HVAC unit is between $5,000-$10,000?
The general inspection should include the HVAC system. If the final general inspection shows anything abnormal, you should get a specialized inspection for the unit.
Also, if there is no service record showing up for that unit, you should make the investment and have the extra inspection done. This could possibly save you thousands. If the detailed inspection reveals a potential issue soon, this should give you some negotiating leverage on the price with the seller or ask for repairs to be completed prior to closing.
Plumbing and sewer
This is another part of the home that should be reviewed in the general inspection. However, if any abnormalities are mentioned at all in the report, a more thorough inspection would be a smart move for the homebuyer.
Does your home have a beautiful fireplace? Well, we recommend a chimney inspection to ensure the ventilation is working as it should. This should also be done to remove any excess debris that may be in the chimney that could cause a potential house fire.
Foundation and structure inspection
If you notice cracks, sagging doors or sticking floors, you should have a structural inspection done on the property. The foundation and structure are extremely important and would be a major issue for you as a future homeowner.
Pest and termite inspection
This one is usually well known in the home buying process. Those wood destroying insects can cause homeowners quite a headache if not remediated.
The home buying process can seem overwhelming at times. So many things to consider when making the best possible financial decision on the home that’s perfect for you. Lean heavily on your Realtor during the home inspection time to make sure you have a clear understanding about the home you’re getting ready to purchase.