Home Inspection Series – Part 1: Inspections 101

Welcome to my 8 part series on home inspections. Many home buyers underestimate the importance of a quality home inspection. A big mistake purchasers often make is to search out the cheapest home inspector on the block to conduct this vital stage of the home buying process. It makes not sense to me to have the cheapest guy inspect the largest investment you and your family will ever make. A quality home inspector will have experience in home structure, electrical systems, roofing and heating and cooling. A cheaper home inspector that does not possess this comprehensive knowledge base will miss important faults and flaws in the home that will end up costing you thousands of dollars down the road. Home inspectors are paid to help protect your largest investment, so why would you try to save $100 now on a poor inspection when it could cost you thousands down the road? I don’t know that answer, but many home buyers are making this same mistake.

I have compiled this series on home inspections with the help first time home buyers understand the importance of a home inspection and, even though you have just spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on your new home, spend a little extra to ensure you receive a proper and comprehensive home inspection. A home inspection can do more than just satisfy curiosity – it’s an opportunity to learn as much as possible about your prospective purchase and its hidden potential… or pitfalls

Would you buy a used car privately off someone without having a qualified and objective mechanic give it a thorough once-over? Of course not. So when it comes to one of the most significant purchases you’ll ever make in your life, a proper home inspection is not only necessary – it’s essential.

Homes inspectors check all of the major systems in a home, such as the plumbing, electrical, heating and air conditioning. They’ll also do a visual inspection of the foundation, doors, ceilings, roof, walls, windows, plumbing, ventilation, insulation, sewage system, lot and garage – at the very least. Their services are required to protect your investment and insure there are no structural issues or flaws in the house that you may not be aware of.
Unlike homebuyers themselves, whose observations are partial and often highly emotionally charged, a home inspector performs his role with an unbiased attitude and with the best interests of the customer in mind. By identifying existing or potential areas of concern, the inspection report will help secure your investment, avoid post-closing surprises and provide you with peace of mind. An insightful report is fundamental to ensuring you make the right buying decision.

The process usually takes about three hours, during which time the house is examined from the ground up. The inspection includes observation and, when appropriate, operation of the plumbing, heating, air conditioning, electrical, and appliance systems, as well as structural components such as the roof, attic, foundation, basement, exterior and interior walls, chimney and doors.

According to George Pappas, president of Pappas Home Inspections Inc., Toronto, inspections usually take about three hours for a two-storey detached house, two to three hours for bungalow and one or two hours for a two-bedroom high-rise condo. Costs range similarly, from about $365 for a condo to $425 for a bungalow or detached house (plus GST).

Home inspections cover about 1,000 check-points in approximately 400 items around the home. Findings are usually provided in the form of a comprehensive report, together with a recommended action, AmeriSpec says. It is important that such a report include an objective evaluation of the condition of the home, clearly relating existing defects and indicating potential problems.

For more information on buying or selling real estate in Burlington, Hamilton, Oakville, or Toronto Ontario, or if you have questions about current market trends, mortgages or interest rate information, please visit the Sean Kavanagh Real Estate Resource Centre at www.seansells.ca, or at www.seankavanagh.ca I’d be happy to answer any questions to accommodate all of your real estate needs. Follow me on TWITTER or FACEBOOK! You can also contact me at 905-220-9198 or at www.realestatechat.ca as I am now a moderator on the Ontario Real Estate chat forum as well as the Burlington, Ontario sub-forum.

Sean Kavanagh

Building Lasting Relationships and Exceeding Expectations

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