why hire a home inspector
When you are viewing a house for purchase, most likely you are walking through the house imagining yourself and your family and friends enjoying the space. You think about Saturday mornings on the porch drinking coffee, late nights cuddled up on the couch reading or watching a movie. You think about ways that you can decorate or renovate to make it YOUR HOME.
Do you think about the electrical panel, the plumbing, the shingles, the smoke detectors?
Probably not. And you shouldn't have to. While you are busy dreaming about your home let a home inspector look at the house.
What a home inspector does
A home inspector performs a non-invasive thorough inspection of the house and property, and will provide you with written report detailing any deficiencies or concerns that are apparent to the trained eye at the time of the inspection.
What is inspected
An InterNACHI certified home inspector follows a set of Standards of Practice which informs the inspector what should be inspected and reported at a minimum. It includes but may not be limited to:
- Roofing material and flashing
- Roof structure, soffits, fascia, and flashing
- Eavestroughs and downspouts
- Wall covering (brick, vinyl siding, etc.)
- Foundation and overall structure
- Windows and doors
- Porches, decks, balconies
- Garages and carports
- Main electrical service
- Stairs, ramps, handrails, and guards
- Patios, walkways, driveways
- Vegetation and overall surface drainage
- Doors, windows, walls, floors
- Stairs and railings
- Garage vehicle doors
- Basements and crawlspaces
- Heating and cooling systems
- Electrical system and fixtures
- Smoke detectors
- Plumbing system and fixtures
- Water heaters and sump pumps
- Attic, insulation, and ventilation
Limitations of any home inspection
Any given home inspector is not necessarily an expert on any component of your home. A qualified home inspector has enough knowledge and experience to point out defects in systems that a home buyer may not be able to see and that may affect their offer and decisions when buying a home. A home inspector may identify defects with certainty, or they may suggest that an expert be contacted to investigate a particular issue further.
A home inspection is not technically exhaustive. This means the process does not involve dismantling of components or specialized testing or analysis of any particular component. Systems are tested using standard controls such as thermostats and wall switches.
A home inspection will not necessarily indicate what has happened to cause deficiencies, nor should it predict with certainty the condition of any aspect of the home at any point in the future. It is a snapshot of the condition of the home at the time of the inspection.
A home inspector does not have super powers. They cannot see inside walls or under floors. The home inspection does not offer any information about any component or condition that can not be visibly inspected on the day of the inspection for any reason.
The most important consideration at the time of the inspection is the safety of the inspector and anyone else who attends the inspection. The inspector has sole discretion to determine whether it is safe to inspect any aspect of the home. For example, if it too windy to climb a ladder, or the electrical panel does not appear safe to touch, the inspector has the right to not proceed with that portion of the inspection.