During the spring and summer, more people buy and sell homes than at any other time of the year. So, if you’re thinking about buying, here are the things your home inspector won’t tell you. We got this from SmartMoney.com.
- The first thing an inspector won’t tell you: My idea of “an inspection” is different from yours. Their job is to conduct a visual examination of the house for major defects – like electricity that’s not grounded, or obvious water leaks, but they don’t pull up the carpet to make sure the floors are level, or drill into the walls looking for insulation.
- Another thing your home inspector won’t tell you: I didn’t need training for this job. The key: Find a home inspector who’s had years of experience. Ask if they belong to the American Society of Home Inspectors – ASHI, which requires inspectors to pass a national home inspector exam, and have at least 250 inspections under their belt.
- They also won’t tell you: I don’t have to climb on your roof. However, the only way to tell if a roof is bad is by looking straight down on it – not up from the ground. The fix: Set up a ladder so you – or they – can take a good look at the roof without actually stepping on it.
- Another thing your home inspector won’t tell you: The standard $350 fee doesn’t cover everything. There are add-on fees for inspecting “extras,” like appliances, fire sprinklers, lawn sprinklers, septic systems, non-central air conditioning, and smoke detectors. They charge extra to test for lead paint, asbestos, radon gas, pests, and geologic conditions. You might even need to hire a specialist to inspect some things, like the septic system.
- One final thing your home inspector won’t tell you: My work isn’t guaranteed. In other words, their inspection is not a prediction for the future. So, if your boiler fails or your roof leaks, you can’t go back and blame them. A good inspector will share facts like, the typical roof lasts 20 years – and this one’s 14 years old. So, it’ll last a maximum of six more years.