One of the most pivotal parts of the home buying process is ensuring an inspection is done before closing. There are many reasons to get a home inspection before buying a house, as it can be a key process in revealing issues, safety concerns, or other negative factors that could impact your decision to buy.
Below are some reasons why you should consider a home inspection to ensure you’re making the right choice for your future home.
What Is a Home Inspection?
Simply put, a home inspection is a physical examination of the home you’re planning to buy. During this process, an inspector will examine the home’s structure and systems in great detail to ensure there are no safety concerns or damage.
During the buying process, the inspection usually happens immediately following the acceptance of your offer on the home. At this time, the home is in escrow, which means any legal arrangement between the buyer and seller is on hold until certain conditions are met. If any problems are uncovered during the inspection, repairs can be done before any money or property is exchanged from one party to the other.
Why Should You Have a Home Inspection Done Before Buying a House?
Having a home inspection taken care of before closing on a home is an important step to ensure you are getting the most out of your purchase. In many cases, any problems unearthed during the inspection can be used to negotiate the price or even back out of the sale before closing occurs.
Other important reasons to have a home inspection done before buying a house may include the following:
1. Uncovers Safety Issues
No one wants to move into a home that is unsafe or a threat to you and your family. A home inspection can effectively uncover any safety concerns in the home, including:
- Structural issues
- Radon or carbon monoxide
- Mold growth
- Pest or insect infestations
- Improper electrical wiring
- Damaged windows or roof
- Plumbing deficiencies
The buyer/seller contract should state that if any of these issues arise, you have the option to cancel your offer and back out of the sale.
2. Reveals Any Illegal Additions
Believe it or not, many homeowners may choose to add additions or make other home improvements without receiving the proper permits to do so. If this is uncovered during a home inspection, the buyer and seller transaction can quickly become complicated. In fact, if the seller doesn’t disclose that unpermitted improvements were made, they may be legally obligated to fix the problem prior to closing.
3. Reveals Any Deal-Breakers
Home inspections are a great tool for buyers to determine how much more money they may need to invest in the home after purchasing. This may include taking care of certain repairs, changing out appliances, or resolving safety concerns. For some buyers, these items may be a deal-breaker if they aren’t willing to fork over the extra money to take care of these problems themselves once the deal closes.
4. Helps You Forecast Future Expenses
On the other hand, revealing certain deal-breakers during a home inspection can also give the buyers a sense of what future expenses they’ll be liable for. Critical equipment like the home’s heating and cooling system, water heater, plumbing, appliances, and more all come with standard shelf lives, which means they don’t last forever.
The home inspector can determine if any of these items are nearing the end of their workable life, and whether they may be expenses the buyer will have to take care of in the near future.
5. Gives You a Negotiating Tool
It’s important to remember that smaller problems found during a home inspection do not necessarily hold enough ground for negotiating a better price. However, any major problems discovered—especially if they threaten the buyer’s safety—can be used to renegotiate the original offer the seller accepted. If an issue is big enough, the price may be reduced, or the seller may be required to provide certain concessions.
6. Provides You an Out as a Buyer
Above all else, one of the biggest reasons to get a home inspection is to have an out as a buyer. There are various reasons a buyer may walk away from a real estate transaction while the home is under contract, and one of these includes whether problems are discovered during the inspection. If something is not up to par and the seller isn’t willing to negotiate, buyers are allowed to move on.
Home inspections are an important part of the buying process because a home is a huge investment that you may live in for decades, and it’s critical to protect yourself as you may be beholden to this purchase for a long time. As a buyer, it’s good to know what you are willing to compromise on versus when it’s time to walk away. Having your future home examined by an inspector before closing ensures you’re getting the most from your new investment.
Buying a home can be a stressful process. Fortunately, First Fidelis is here to make the lending process as simple as possible. Contact us today at 913-205-9978 or download our home buyer’s guide to learn more!