Buying Your Home - Home Inspections & Warranties
What's a home inspection?
A home inspection is when a paid professional inspector -- often a contractor or an engineer -- inspects the home, searching for defects or other problems that might plague the owner later on. They usually represent the buyer and or paid by the buyer. The inspection takes place after a purchase contract between buyer and seller has been signed.
Do I need a home inspection?
Yes. Buying a home "as is" is a risky
proposition. Major repairs on homes can amount to thousands of dollars.
Plumbing, electrical and roof problems represent significant and complex systems
that are expensive to fix.
How do I find a home inspector?
You can ask for referrals
from family and friends and of course your real estate broker.
When possible, hire an inspector who belongs to one
of the home inspection trade organizations. The American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI) has developed formal
inspection guidelines and a professional code of ethics for its members.
Membership to ASHI is not automatic; proven field experience and technical
knowledge of structures and their various systems and appliances are a
prerequisite. Rates for the service vary. Many inspectors charge about
$400, but costs go up with the scope of the inspection.