Frequently Asked Home Inspection Questions
These FAQs are designed to provide a better understanding of Home and Hearth Inspection, our inspection process, and other potential problems that would affect a purchasers buying decision. They are good home inspection questions that provide basic information, sometimes about fairly complex topics, and will often link to more detailed information.
What is a Home Inspection?
A home inspection is a professional, complete visual examination of the all the systems and physical structural elements of a home. My emphasis is on identifying existing or potential problems that would affect a purchasers buying decision.
Why do I need a Home Inspection?
A home is the largest purchase most people will ever make. It only makes sense to find out as much as you can about the house you are interested in before you buy. That way you can avoid costly surprise repairs and problems with your new home. My report will also advise you of what maintenance is required to keep your home in top condition. A professional inspection will give you a clear picture of the many systems and structural elements that make up the property. If you are selling your home, a listing inspection will point out any potential problems that might be uncovered later by the buyers inspector. Finding them early will allow you to address them before listing your home, making for a faster and smoother sale.
What does a Home Inspection include?
My standard inspection report covers all the major systems and structural elements of the house. This includes the condition of the homes heating and air conditioning systems, plumbing and electrical systems, roof, foundation, attic and visible insulation, walls, doors, windows and all visible structures.
Do I need to be there during the Inspection?
No, you aren’t required to be there for the inspection. But I highly recommend that you be present. It’s a valuable learning experience for most people and will help you get the most benefit from the inspection. By following me you can ask questions directly and I can explain maintenance tips for specific areas. I feel you will be able to best understand the finished report and get the most benefit from it by having been there during the inspection.
How long will the Inspection take?
The time will vary depending on both the size and condition of the home. For most homes, 3 hours is pretty typical. But for larger homes, or homes in poor condition, it may take longer.
Does a newly constructed home need an Inspection?
Absolutely. A professional inspection of a new home is important. I can spot potential problems early, while they are still easy to correct. It’s especially valuable to arrange an inspection before the interior walls are finished. As a inspection professional, I may find problem areas where the builder has taken shortcuts or not done good work.
Why can't I do the Inspection myself?
Chances are that even if you are very familiar with home construction, you still don’t have general knowledge of all the systems of the house. A home inspector is familiar with all the systems of a home and knows what problems to look for. But beyond the technical expertise and experience a professional inspector brings, it is important to remember that an inspector remains an impartial third party. If you are involved in buying or selling a house, it’s impossible for you to remain completely unemotional about the house and this may cloud your judgment. As a professional inspector, I will provide an objective independent reporting of the facts.
What if the Inspection uncovers problems?
My report will tell you the condition of the house, including needed repairs and expenses. No house is going to be perfect. It is up to you to decide how any problems the inspection uncovers might affect your decision to purchase. If major problems are discovered, you may want to try negotiating with the seller to have them repaired before closing the deal. Or perhaps the seller will lower the price, or offer more favorable contract terms. In the end, the decision rests with you, but knowing about potential problems, before you buy, gives you the power to negotiate and make the best decisions.
Will you fix the problems you find during the Inspection?
No. The code of ethics of The American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI) prohibits its members from doing repair work on properties they inspect. Additionally, Massachusetts laws and regulations prohibit this obvious conflict of interest. This assures that there will never be any conflict of interest by the inspector. My purpose is to provide an unbiased, objective third party written report on the condition of the home.