Six Things You Should Know About Home Inspections
Your New Home Will Have Problems
Homes are like people. We are all a little messed up. My point is to prepare you that there will be a list of issues and that is OK. I like to go on and tell my clients that my husband still loves me even though I have my issues and that a home is no different. Embrace it.
Almost Anything Can Be Fixed
There are a few things that terrify a client when they hear them: mold, asbestos, safety. Yes they can be scary but no scarier than a furnace that needs replacing or windows that need repairs and painting. Let your home inspector point you in the right direction. Almost everything can be fixed and just because it was here, does not make it a 'bad house'.
Not Everything Will Get Fixed
Right after I tell my clients that my husband still loves me, even with my issues, I qualify that by saying, "Some things will never change and thank goodness he understands." No home is perfect and not everything will be fixed. Even my own home has repairs that need to be done and systems that are ready to be updated. It is just part of owning a home. The inspection report is not meant to be a checklist to ask the seller to repair every item on the list, but rather to investigate some big ticket items that may not be functioning property or may be not working currently. The renegotiation after inspection is meant to address health and safety issues only or big-ticket items and not meant to “nickel and dime” the sellers. You are likely not buying a brand new house, so there’s bound to be many issues. But, if you limit your requests to focus on the big things, the sellers are much more likely to comply with your request.
We Cannot Predict the Future
A home inspection is not a life-time warranty! The inspector will inspect the condition on the day of the inspection. They cannot guarantee that there will never be a roof leak if there is a horrific storm the week after your closing. I really wish they could tell you how long the roof will last or when the furnace will need to be replaced. It's just not possible. They can give you an idea how long they normally last and what kind of condition they are in now. But no one can predict the future.
They Will Not Find Everything Wrong in The Home
We are here to find the big stuff. Things of consequence like water, safety, structure. They will not find or report on everything wrong in the home. That is just not what they are here for. Owning and maintaining a home is a continuous process. Every year I find, and sometimes fix, things in my home that have been there since it was built. I always recommend a home warranty to help cover any unexpected problems that arise.
Get Your Heart and Head in Check
It can be incredibly tough to step back from your love of the home to see it as an investment. Once you see the list of repairs and observations, it can be a bit overwhelming. Take a deep breath. The report may include a few things that need to be done now. But it will mostly be a to-do list while you own the home. Not everything needs to be done right away and a good inspector will help you understand that. Take things one at a time and don't let a long list affect your love of the home.