Property Inspection

The Property Inspection Contingency
This contingency provides that if a property inspection reveals that significant defects are revealed and documented, you can back out of your offer, free of penalty, within a certain time frame.

Why should I get a Property Inspection?
A professional property inspection is an important step in the home-buying process and is worth every penny. The inspection can reveal issues that may save you time and money by knowing them up front. Try to attend the inspection so you get a good understanding of required maintenance and items that may need attention.

What does a Property Inspection Examine?
A professional Inspector will examine major aspects and safety issues of the property, and issue a detailed written report, complete with photos. The inspection normally last for two to three hours.

The report should note if each issue is a safety issue, major defect, or minor defect. In addition the report should note which items need to be replaced, repaired, or serviced.

Basic Aspects of an Exterior Inspection
Grading – grading should slope away from the structure but should not pile up against the foundation.
Foundation – foundation issues, like cracks or settling.
Exterior walls – foundation walls, siding, cracks.
Trees and Shrubs – Shall not provide damage to the structure.
Garage –  soundness, ventilation, accessibility.
Roof – quality of installation, shingles, mastic around vents, gutters, and overall water protection.

Basic Aspects of an Interior Inspection

  • Plumbing –  faucets, showers, tubs, sinks, toilets, for visible leaks and  water pressure and valves.
  • Electrical – type of wiring, Main Panel, ground fault circuit interrupters, electrical outlets.
  • Heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) – condition of  furnace, air conditioner, ducts and pipes
  • Water heater – condition of  water heater, pipes and valves.
  • Laundry room – utility connections and Ventilation.
  • Fire safety – Smoke detectors, fire rating were needed.

Specialty Inspections that you should consider:

  • Pest Inspector –  insects, rodents, wood destroying organisms and pests issues
  • Asbestos –  insulation, shingles, siding
  • Gases – Radon, Methane, Radiation, Formaldehyde
  • Lead – paint, pipes, coatings
  • Mold, Mildew and Fungi – in  the structure or ducts

home inspectionAfter the Inspection
If the inspection report documents significant and expensive issues, you can decline to purchase the property (provided that the purchase contracts has an inspection contingency).

Otherwise, you can ask the seller to fix some or all of the issues whether they are large or small. Additionally you may ask the seller to  reduce the purchase price, or to give you a cash credit at closing to compensate you for the issues.

If the seller will not compensate you for these issues your only remaining option will be to go forward with the purchase “AS IS” and be responsible for any required repairs.  If this is the case, the Inspection Report will help you  to come up with a plan for repairs in order of their importance and affordability once you own the property.