A home inspection can help you spot issues with your potential new home before you close. While not required in Florida, they are a useful tool for buyers who want to protect themselves when entering into a contract. You can learn more about why you need a home inspection here.
If you are a buyer, you have probably learned a lot about the homebuying process. It is certainly more complicated than people assume it to be! In this article, I want to further demystify home inspections so you can learn how long home inspections take, what you can expect during the process, and more.
Home Inspection FAQs
What will I learn from a home inspection?
A home inspection will provide you with insight into:
- The structural elements of the home, such as the foundation, roof, floors, and walls
- Whether there are signs of pest damage, like termite tunnels, or mold
- How well the HVAC and other systems appear to be working
It is natural for a home inspector to find some issues with a home, like an AC that needs to be serviced or a roof that will need to be replaced. When it comes to a home inspection, the concern is not whether there are things that need work on the home, but rather whether you are willing to fix those items and how.
For example, if the roof needs to be replaced, you can opt to deal with it after the purchase or you can choose to renegotiate the sale to cover the cost of the roof replacement. If you have questions, ask your Realtor. She is a professional who has dealt with a variety of home inspection scenarios!
If you are wondering about what types of issues are commonly found during a home inspection, check out this post.
Should I get a home inspection?
While some potential buyers choose to waive the inspection to speed up the buying process or to make their offer more competitive, others choose to require it so they can mitigate the risk of purchasing a property. If you are unsure of how you would like to proceed, discuss your concerns with your Realtor. She will provide guidance based on her experience and what she has seen in the current real estate market.
Who hires the home inspector?
If you want a home inspection, you will need to call a home inspection company and schedule it within the timeframe outlined in your offer. Because a home inspection can lead to a bid being retracted, it must be done in a timely fashion so that both parties have time to consider whether the sale of the home will proceed.
Who pays for the home inspection?
Because a home inspection is not required and is only done at the buyer’s request, it falls to the buyer to pay for the inspection.
In some cases, a seller who is aware of issues with his home may have a home inspection done before listing his home so he can sell it as-is and provide potential buyers with the inspection results. Again, this is not required, but it may help the seller find a buyer who better understands the conditions of the home and what it needs.
How much does a home inspection cost?
The cost of a home inspection will vary by company and by what is included. Check with any company you contact to see what their home inspection covers and whether you would want additional services.
When should I schedule my home inspection?
Once your offer has been accepted, you should call a home inspection company for an appointment. You will have a limited window of time to complete the inspection, so the sooner you get it scheduled, the better. Your Realtor can help you better understand the timeline so you can schedule your home inspection in a timely manner.
Do I need to be present during the home inspection?
You are not required to be present during the home inspection, however, it is a good idea. Not only will you get to witness what is covered by the home inspection, but the inspector himself will also mention things to you through the process so you can better understand what he is doing and why. Plus, if you have any concerns about a particular aspect of the home, you can ask during the inspection.
If you would like, you can also have a contractor or a friend with you during the home inspection.
How long does a home inspection take?
There are a couple of factors that go into how low a home inspection will take. The size of the home and its condition may impact how long it takes an inspector to look at the various items on his checklist and make notes. If you will be attending the home inspection, prepare to be there for two to four hours.
Will I get a report about the findings?
Once the home inspection is complete, the inspector will forward you his findings. You should share this with your Realtor so she can provide additional insight based on her experience.
Read over the findings so you can better understand what the inspector has found and consider whether it has any impact on your purchase.
Buying a Home? Talk to an Expert
If you are thinking of buying a home in the Tampa area, give me a call. I understand that the process can feel overwhelming to home buyers. My aim is to help reduce the stress so that you can actually enjoy looking for your new home. Contact me today and let’s get the process started!