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A home inspection is a vital part of the process of buying a new home. It is required by the bank that is lending you the money. It protects them from a dangerous investment. It also helps protect you against any unseen issues with the home. The things that the home inspector will point out to you can be minor as aesthetic problems or they may be serious structural concerns.
The minor aesthetic issues should not cause alarm. They may, still, despite my advice. When it's a home that you're buying minor things can still seem like a big deal. Remember, no home is perfect and there's always some project waiting in the wings. Do not sweat the small stuff.
Use this home inspection checklist to guide you through the home inspection process.
Major structural concerns usually cost the most to fix and are can be potentially harmful to your health. Pay attention to these. Get the seller you are buying the home from to do one of these two things:
A) Address the concerns in writing and fix the problem before purchasing the home. Have them guarantee that if it is not fixed within reason that they will need to have it fixed with their money.
B) Negotiate for a lower selling price based on the estimated repairs. Now, coming to an agreement with the seller on what it will cost to fix the problem may be tricky. You will want to enough room to cover all your costs. The seller will want to leave you just enough to get the job done. Just remember, projects usually cost a little more than you think and take longer than you think so try to work something out that is fair. They may want to hire the company and you may not trust whom they hire, etc. Whatever you agree upon, have the inspector inspect the job after it is complete and sign off on the fix.
Home Inspection Costs
The average cost to hire a home inspector will vary based on geographic location and the company you choose to hire, and the size of the home. For a 1600-2,200 square foot home it will cost between $300 and $600 for a home inspection. The larger the home the more it will cost to inspect. Ask your home inspector if the inspection includes the following:
- cost estimates for repairs
- roof inspection with a ladder
- a termite certificate
- combustion testing on heating sources
- opening electrical panels
The cost of basic home inspection will typically cover the following:
- Major structural issues-this will cover anything that should be fixed before you purchase the home or at least, addressed with the seller. These are things that need to be fixed soon to prevent health issues or further structural damage.
- Minor structural issues-this will be structural issues that may cause problems years from now or may be an annoyance but not dangerous.
What tests are, sometimes, not included?
- Water quality - The cost of a water quality test is $100 to $200.
- Mold - The cost for mold inspection is $100 to $300.
- Radon - The cost to test for radon is $75 to $150. You can get a Home Radon Test Kit online.
- Wood Boring Insects (Termites, etc.) - The cost to inspect for wood boring insects is $100 to $150. This is often times included in the original home inspection. This is the cost if you were getting this separately and needed a compliance report as proof the property is free from these pests.
- Septic Inspection - The cost for septic inspection usually starts at $300 to $500 and can easily go up depending on how “messy” the job gets.
You may purchase all of these tests at an added cost. These are not always part of the standard inspection required by the state.