Nearly 46% of home buyers used their home inspection reports to negotiate a lower price for potential homes.
While there are various important steps in the home-buying process, none is as impactful as a home inspection. A professional inspection offers buyers much-needed reassurance by bringing to light potential problems before closing a home.
But what exactly does a home inspection report include? Learn more below.
What Does a Home Inspection Cover?
While there are differences in experience, skill, and thoroughness among inspectors, a qualified inspector should typically investigate specific aspects of a home before writing a report outlining their findings.
The inspection typically takes 2 to 3 hours. Be sure to be present to hear the inspector’s findings in person and ask questions if needed. The following house inspection list for homebuyers should give you a rough idea of what to expect.
Interior Home Inspection
There are several main components that home inspectors examine inside the home. Their report must include the following:
The inspector will determine the type of wiring in the house, test each outlet, and ensure that places like the bathrooms, kitchens, garage, and outdoors have working ground fault interrupters installed. Additionally, they’ll look for any electrical safety concerns to make sure the home isn’t at risk of a fire or electrocution hazard.
All faucets and showers are inspected by the home inspector who evaluates the water pressure and looks for any evident leaks. If pipes are accessible, they’ll also determine what type the house has and whether it needs revamping.
If the plumbing system is too old, the inspector may advise a second check to establish whether they need to be upgraded.
The inspector will examine the HVAC system to establish its age, check to ensure that the furnace and AC are working properly, and make recommendations for maintenance or repairs. An inspector may also determine the age of the home’s ductwork, whether it may be leaking, and whether it has enough insulation to lower your energy costs.
External Home Inspection
Some of the largest problems come up during exterior home inspections. Home inspectors will look at the following:
Because foundations are important in the structural integrity of your house, it’s arguably the most important part to be examined.
The first step is examining the exterior looking for any areas with bulging. This is an indication of an uneven load on the foundation which should be level. What’s more, the inspectors will identify any cracks in the substructure and potential water damage.
Sometimes, the cracks aren’t visible, but the walls may be slightly out of place because of shifting foundations. Also, if the doors and windows are jammed, it might be a sign that the foundation moved. The inspector will ensure that substructure supports are level, have no buckling, and are in good condition.
The inspector will look for missing or damaged siding, cracks, and if the soil is too close to the house’s foundation which could attract pests. The home inspector won’t look for actual termites or other damage – instead, the pest inspection will.
The house inspector will inform you if the grading slopes properly away from the property. If it doesn’t, water can enter a home and cause damage. In this case, you’ll either need to alter the yard’s slope or install a drainage system.
The inspection looks for loose, missing, or inadequately fastened shingles as well as cracked mastic surrounding vents in places where the roofing is damaged or may enable water to penetrate. They will also examine the gutters for damage.
What Is Not Covered?
A home inspection can’t detect every flaw in the home, it only looks for visual indicators of problems. Inspectors will not look at the following things:
- Chimney interiors
- Underneath electrical panels
- Inside pipes or sewers
- Inside walls
The majority of house inspectors are generalists. This means that while they can alert you about potential foundation problems, plumbing issues, and pest infestations, they’ll typically advise that you engage a specialist to confirm the problem and provide you with the best solutions.
What to Do If You Have a Foundation Problem
If there are issues, whether big or minor, ask the seller to solve them or negotiate a lower price. As long as the purchase agreement has an inspection contingency, you can back out of the deal if the issues are too serious or expensive to address.
If none of these choices are practical for you, get quotes for repairs and develop a strategy for fixing the issues yourself.
For foundation problems, look no further than Pinnacle Foundation Repair. With over 20 years of service, you can trust us to offer quality foundation services for your peace of mind. Schedule a free foundation inspection by an expert today.