Scheduling a home inspection when buying a home is an important step in the process. Home inspectors are skilled at identifying issues and safety concerns to give you a better idea of the property’s condition. Order a professional inspection to help you avoid costly unexpected repairs after you have purchased a house. Make sure that your inspector is experienced and reliable by asking these questions before hiring a home inspector.

What Are Your Qualifications?

A highly-qualified home inspector often has experience working in the home repair or home construction industry. However, almost anyone can become an inspector by taking a certification course. It’s best to hire a professional with a background that goes beyond the bare minimum training for home inspectors.

When Hiring a Home Inspector, Ask Which Services are Included

A home inspection may not cover every area of the home. For example, an inspector may not inspect the fireplace or the roof. Review the services a home inspector offers. Ask what the inspection includes and if he or she uses any special tools, like a thermal imaging camera, that would help return a more detailed inspection report. This way you will know exactly what you are getting for the price.

Ask About the Cost of the Inspection

In most cases, homebuyers are responsible for hiring a home inspector, and the price for a home inspection varies. Keep in mind that the cost of a complete inspection is insignificant compared to the cost of purchasing a home, and is money well spent. Be sure to ask the inspector what he or she will charge so you know what you’ll pay for the service.

What is Your Availability?

Most purchase contracts indicate the date by which the inspection should be completed. Homebuyers need an inspection report in time to decide whether to walk away from the deal or negotiate repairs with the seller. Make sure the inspector’s availability works within your timeline.

Ask to View a Sample Report When Hiring a Home Inspector

Look at a sample report to see how the home inspector presents his or her findings. A good inspection report will include comments and photos from the inspector. Ask if the home inspector has a sample inspection report so you can review the details.

How Experienced are You as an Inspector?

Shop for a home inspector who has experience in the industry. An experienced inspector has seen all types of issues, concerns, and problems in many different homes. They are likely to identify and document more issues and concerns because they know what to look for.

One of the most important steps when buying a home is hiring a home inspector to assess the property. A home inspection report will help you determine whether you should move forward, renegotiate, or back out of the sale. Including a home inspection as a contingency in your sales agreement is a smart decision when making such a large investment.

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