When it comes to a home inspection, there are plenty of different things to be aware of, and things to think about. After all, home inspections are critical when it comes to real estate, whether you are the buyer or the seller. Because of that, it’s critical that you know exactly what to expect during a home inspection so you aren’t surprised or taken advantage of in any way during the process.
Here are just a few simple tips and tricks to know during your home inspection. Hopefully using these, you will be able to come to a home inspection more intelligently and shrewdly, and understand the inspection itself in a more technical sense:
Bring The Right Tools
First and foremost, schedule the home inspection during daylight hours so there is no question about what you are seeing if you go into dark rooms, basements, crawl spaces, and other areas in the home that are technical (and critical!). With that, bring the right tools – a flashlight, a step ladder, a tape recorder, and a circuit tester to test circuits. You need to be able to go anywhere in the home in a moment’s notice to ensure it is acceptable, so bring the right tools to make sure you are prepared, rather than leaving anything to chance.
Interview the Occupants
One major thing to be aware of during an inspection is the previous occupant’s experience. Interview them about the home and sit down with them asking open ended, leading questions. Ask them about damage history (including floods, leaking, moisture, termites, and more) and get to the bottom of their life in the home. This will help you as you become a detective working on behalf of your new home!
Take Notes and Make Conclusions
Many people go through home inspections as a part of the process, and yet the fail to truly process all the information they experienced during the inspection. That is, they don’t take notes or make conclusions on their own. Be aware that you’ll only get one crack at the home inspection – make notes, use the tape recorder, and constantly analyze and critique what you are seeing, so when you go back later to review the home inspection notes and papers, you can clearly remember what you liked about it, what you didn’t like, and what you think about the home in your final analysis.
All in all, it pays to be very, very thoughtful and present during home inspections. Keep notes and be meticulously aware of everything you see during the inspection process – that preparation will help you as you ultimately make a decision about the home and its potential in your life moving forward!
If I were to ever move again I would be so much more thorough about the home inspection than I was the first time around. We missed so many things on our current house (because we were young and inexperienced). They’d have to block out an hour or two!
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Raquel@Practical Cents says
I agree with MMD. Though in my state we hire professional home inspectors and they give you a full report, I would consider a lot more things now that I have gone through the process.
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We have used professional home inspectors two times as well. The charge was $150 – $200, and I think it was worth it. They had so much experience compared to me that they were able to identify several things that we had corrected before purchasing the house.
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KK @ Student Debt Survivor says
We paid for a professional inspector and he gave us a full written report (thankfully there were no major issues). It was definitely money well spent for us since we are not handy in anyway and my dad lives 9 hours away. If and when we buy again we’d definitely have our handyman and plumber come look at the place before we made the final decision.
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I totally agree with you Pauline. These are very vital information sometimes home buyers overlook. It is indeed important that aside from looking at the property’s price and location it is also important to take a look at its amenities. I suggest if you are not so familiar about this area you may have someone with you during the inspection an expert or someone with know-how.
No Nonsense Landlord says
Home inspectors are worth it. If they find things, it’s easier to get the seller to fix them for the buyer. Having said that, I mostly skip the inspection and do it myself.
But going around with the inspector and asking him/her what they are looking for, if a great learning experience.
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electrical installation report says
There is no doubt that home inspectors are worth there money in the landlord industry, a good thing to do is be there and learn from what they are doing so eventually you can cut this cost and do it all yourself
Mathieu Lebrun says
Thank you for sharing. It’s very useful. Hope to hear more from you.
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Hazel Owens says
I like your tip to interview the previous occupants about their experience in the home. While inspections are obviously helpful, things can be missed or small problems could be looked over. However, if you know the history of the home, you’ll know what to look for and can put even seemingly innocent problems into context. Thanks for the article.
Silas Knight says
Going with a home inspector to inspect a home is a good idea. You have some great tips here for getting the most out of an inspection, like taking notes. I had never thought to do that before, but writing things down would definitely help you process the information.
Running with a home auditor to review a house is a smart thought. You have some awesome tips here for getting the most out of an investigation, such as taking notes. I had never thought to do that, however recording things would help you prepare the data.
Ridley Fitzgerald says
I have never been through a home inspection before, so thanks for the info. I had never thought about asking the previous occupants for their experience. I can see how that would be helpful though, to have all of that information from them. I am looking to buy a home soon, so I will remember this.
It’s a good idea to ask about previous issues of importance, including termite infestations, as you suggest. Damage from floods, leaking, and moisture are also concerns that should be evaluated before overtaking the property.
It’s a nice idea to ask about previous issues of importance, including termite infestations, as you suggest. Damage from floods, leaking, and moisture are also concerns that should be evaluated before overtaking the property.