What is a home inspection and why every seller wants a buyer to hold one?

A home inspection is preformed a by a State licensed home inspector. What is the home inspector looking at? Everything. The home inspectors job is to tell the buyer all that is wrong with the home. That’s right! So why does a seller want the home buyer to have home inspection?

First let me say that it is becoming more common that buyers are waiving the right to a home inspection in order to make their offers more attractive. So if you have a buyer that is waiving their rights, that is fine. However when a buyer does want to hold an inspection it is not something that you need to be overly concerned with because, and this is just a general statement, the buyer if they find that there are any defects in the home that you were aware of, they can sue the seller after the closing. It is best to avoid any potential legal actions and think of the home inspection has something that can prevent the buyer from suing you at least over issues they should have uncovered in the home inspection.

It is too long to list out everything a home inspector will do. However if we look at it in general areas it is easier to understand what a home inspector will do.
Exterior. The home inspector will look at the exterior of the home. They are looking for any areas where water may not run off. Most home inspectors will not look at the sewer or septic. The will look at the exterior of the home searching for defects in the brick stucco or siding. The will look over the roof to see if there are any areas that need attention. They will look at the chimney and chimney cap. As well as Garages and Garage doors making sure everything is functioning.

Interior. The home inspector will run the heat and the air conditioning. They will check every outlet to see if there is power, and if the outlets are properly grounded. They will run all the faucets at the same time to see if hot water comes out and how the hot water heater efficiently the hot water is delievered when all the faucets are running. They will look to see how the water drains out of the sinks and tubs. They will look at the grout and caulking to look for any areas of concern. They will check the windows and see if they are working properly and if there are any drafts.

At the end of the inspection the home inspector provides a report. It details all the findings. Homeguage.com provides a sample of a home inspection report, click here to view a sample home inspection report. There may be some items that come up during the inspection that your willing to fix or discount the price on. There may be items you are not willing to do anything about and wont discount the price for. The home inspection is for the buyer to make sure they are aware of any issues, and to confirm they are still interested in moving forward with the purchase.

Lets think of a case where the buyer has decided to walk away from the purchase of the home after the home inspection. That is ok because now you know what the next buyer will uncover and you can either address them by fixing it or letting the potential buyer know up front of what was found. This makes for a more transparent transaction and added assurance that the seller will not have any legal troubles after the closing.
Not all home inspectors are created equal. This means that some are better than others. It is important to always get a referral from someone not involved in your transaction. Often times you want to avoid using the home inspector referred to you by a realtor involved in the transaction. A home inspectors best referral source is a realtor. Therefore the home inspector may have some twisted sense of loyalty to the realtor and may not look carefully or worse not mention something.

The American Society of Home Inspectors has a page where you can search certified and licensed home inspectors in your area. Click here to visit their page.