Home Inspections: What Buyers Need to Know

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Make informed decisions about your home, advise you on what is covered and how to better protect yourself, your family and your new investment!

A home is one of the most important financial transactions you’ll ever make! The more you know about what home inspections entail, and more importantly, how they affect you as a buyer, the more confident you will be moving forward with your transaction!

Home inspections are a vital part of the real estate transaction process, and can add a lot of stress, too.  Preferred Mutual is here to help you live assured! Here is our ultimate guide on home inspections!

Tips For Buyers

Picking Your Home Inspector: You want to know that the home you are buying is something you will be satisfied with, and the first step in that process is finding the right home inspector.
  1. Get a reference from your real estate agent.
  2. Look for a company that is bonded and insured.
  3. Verify that the inspection company only does inspections – not home repairs and renovations.
  4. Get references from friends and family.
  5. Verify that you can accompany the inspector while he or she goes through the home.
  6. Choose an ASHI certified or InterNACHI inspector. These are highly respected organizations that offer inspectors higher levels of training and certifications.

Ask the Right Questions

If at all possible, Preferred Mutual recommends you to attend the home inspection process!  It is a valuable educational opportunity and allows for you to see your potential home through the eyes of an expert.  

Here is a list of questions to think about:
  1. How is the home inspection done? A home inspection is conducted based on the type of loan you plan on purchasing the home with.  The provisions required for each type of loan will be different; be sure to ask your home inspector what those guidelines are! If they mention an issue, ask for a thorough explanation on the spot. They should be happy to explain their observations.
  2. How big is the problem they noted? You need an appropriate perspective on what issues are most pressing to help you make educated decisions on whether the home is in a condition you are able to purchase.
  3. Do I need an expert to assess this issue? Diagnosing issues might require more specific expertise; remember, the home inspector can cite issues, but may not be qualified to address them the way an expert can!
  4. Is this a common problem? Often, an inspector will have done home inspections for many homes in your area, in the type of home you’re hoping to purchase, and can attest to whether a problem is common in those homes or more unusual.
  5. Can you advise me on things I can wait to fix when I have moved in and which ones need to be addressed immediately? Often, a home inspector might note a roof, for instance, is within 5 years of needing replacing, and might recommend that upon your moving in that you replace it within a few years. Other times a repair might need to be done immediately to make sure the integrity of the home is meeting a safe and livable standard.

Keep in mind the purpose of a home inspection is to identify major structural, mechanical, or safety defects of the home.  You should focus on significant issues that should be repaired prior to closing so that the home is safe for you and your family.

Trust Your Real Estate Agent.

Your agent knows what repairs are vital and what repairs can be dealt with later.  Trust your agent to guide you through this process, negotiating for your best interests without threatening the deal!

Trust Your Insurance Agent.

The smoothest real estate transactions happen when you are working with an independent insurance agent who is invested in understanding what matters to you!  They can help you make informed decisions about your home, advise you on what is covered and how to better protect yourself, your family and your new investment! 
Connect with an experienced, independent agent today to build the best policy to meet your needs! When you’re protected by Preferred Mutual, you are living assured.

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