10 Things That Will Maximize Your Home Inspection

A proper home inspection will protect you from buying a house that is a home improvement nightmare. You want to get it right, especially if you are a first time home buyer! Follow the 10 tips below to get the most out of your home inspection.

1. Do your own pre-inspection.

Visit the home and zero in on possible problem areas. Check the walls and ceilings and look for discoloration, stains, or other signs of water damage. Try all the light switches and outlets and peak at the electrical panel. Inspect the outside of the house, too!

2. Be hands-on!

Schedule the home inspection when you have free time to make sure you can attend. Ask questions and point out the specific problems that you would like to further investigate. Do not hesitate to speak up!

3. Find a credible home inspector.

Your realtor will probably recommend a few inspectors, but it is best to find someone on your own. The services of an impartial, third-party home inspector is invaluable. You may have to pay a little extra but it is worth it.

4. Document the inspection.

A camera is an important part of the home inspection. Ask the inspector to photograph any potential issues or any part of the house that you will not want to go to so you can fully understand the problems that may arise.

5. Pay close attention to the roof.

Make sure the home inspector goes up on the roof. You want to examine it closely as the roof is one of the most expensive and labor-intensive parts of a house to replace. Find out when the roof was last replaced, the age of the shingles, and whether or not any warranty exists. Look for damage to shingles and signs of water intrusion to attics, chimneys, or skylights.

6. Look for cosmetic fixes.

Underlying problems can be covered up by cosmetics. For example, freshly painted walls and new floors. Pay attention to any suspicious fixes and ask the inspector to evaluate further.

7. Check GFCI outlets.

Your inspector knows how to test these properly. Malfunctioning or non-working outlets can mean larger electrical problems.

8. Test the plumbing.

Check the water pressure, drains, bathtubs, and shower pans. Ask the inspector to look at the water main and shutoff points, too.

9. Look at the furnace and water heater.

You want to make sure they both work properly! Also, find out how old they are and when were they last serviced. Replacing a furnace and water heater can be so pricy so consider this before buying a house.

10. Inspect the basement.

The condition of the basement will tell you a lot about the house and its foundation. Look for cracks, signs of repairs, and water issues. You want everything to be stable and in order, especially for such a big purchase.