Why do I need a home inspection?

Most home inspections are performed during the purchase or sale of a house, usually initiated, and paid for by a prospective purchaser of a property.  Home inspections are generally not mandatory but are often very helpful to a buyer of a property.  During the home inspection process, a home inspector reviews the physical features of the property and operates the mechanical systems to understand the integrity and function of the systems.  Many states require a home inspector involved in the home inspection process to be licensed in their respective state and follow their Standards of Practice for performing the home inspection.   The Standards of Practice are basically a scope of work, with limitations, on the home inspection process.   All scopes of work have limitations on performance and scope; you should review the Standards of Practice to fully understand what the limitations mean.  Licensed home inspectors partake in educational classes and field training to gain knowledge and experience prior to passing written exams to obtain licensure, in many states.  

Home inspections assist a perspective home buyer in learning about their property of interest.  Home buyers should interview home inspectors to inquire about their knowledge, experience, background, report delivery methods, accessibility to questions, etc…. to gauge the home inspector’s ability to manage your home inspection need.  The home inspection is a vital part of your home buying experience and should be exercised with care.  It is also a great opportunity to learn about the features of your home and ask questions of the home inspector.  If you are able, following a home inspector during the home inspection is a fantastic time to have one on one conversation with your home inspector and discuss findings or observations.  Remember, home purchases are generally one of the largest investments you will make and learning about the house is invaluable for operation and maintenance of your investment.

Home inspectors can be a valuable resource for homeowners outside of a real estate transaction, as well, because the knowledge and skills utilized in performing a home inspection can be applied to investigating problems within your house.  Many inspectors have focused expertise in the varying trades of house construction and offer guidance and direction for repairs or defects of your house.

For a reasonable fee, home inspections provide perspective buyers with valuable knowledge about the property they are considering in a purchase.  Why would you not want to learn about your new house?  Remember, interview perspective home inspectors, ask about their experience, inquire about your attendance at the inspection, and follow recommendations and guideline offered to you. 

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