When you want to buy a home, and are faced with the bewildering variety of options available in the market, it may be useful to have a home inspection checklist made before you get a professional inspection done. This will help you focus on the real intrinsic value of the house rather than the aesthetics. It will also help to raise the issues with the home inspector and may avoid big repair bills and heartache once the house has been bought.
What to Look For
Dividing the house into the exterior and the interior of the house, may be a good idea. Within the property, look for obvious signs of insect infestation on trees and other wood present. Carpenter ants and termites can cause heavy structural damage to the house. Carpenter ants are slow to spread and move from outside to the interior, and early detection can facilitate treatment.
Check the exterior walls for obvious cracks. If there are wooden structures at ground level, they could be damp and rotting. Look for adequate drains leading far enough away from the structure. Any inadequacy may show in the form of liquids seeping into the soil from below, and stains on the pavement from such seepage.
Home inspection services will help you check for any problems in the landscaping, sewage systems, grading and soil contamination Roof shingles that are coming loose and pipes which seem faulty or damaged can also be noted down.
The four ingredients to making life comfortable in the house are plumbing, electrical connections, heating and ventilation. Note down the details of any leaky faucets and bath tubs. Electrical lines that appear to have been extended and taped together could be a potential fire hazard. Home inspection services could help you find signs of overheating with the help of the latest infrared thermography.
Split your home inspection checklist into bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchen, basement and garage. Focus on what you want from each of these stay areas and do not feel shy to note down anything that causes you concern, even if you are not sure. Peeling paint or loose fixtures can be brought up with the inspectors later.
Once your checklist is made, you can put in an offer for the house with a precondition that a professional inspection be conducted. This will help bring out problem areas; that can either be taken care of by the seller; or by the price being brought down appropriately. The inspectors will also by themselves check for a variety of issues that they are specially trained for, like the presence of mold, any foundation deficiencies, and malfunctioning of appliances.
Asbestos present around ducts in older buildings, radon or methane radiation, mold and fungus, and rodent infestation are only covered by specially trained inspectors. You could specifically ask for these services if you so desire.
Renegotiating on the basis of the inspector’s report may not bring down the price drastically in every situation, as the seller generally factors in all the issues before fixing the price. However, along with a little bargaining space, it allows you to be sure of the safety of your investment in case of future resale. Even more importantly, ensuring the safety and comfort of your loved ones, especially children, will make the extra effort every bit worthwhile.