How Important are Home Inspections

Are Home Inspections a must?

Buying a home is the single largest investment that most people make in their lives. With home prices often in the six-figure range, making sure a new home is everything it appears to be is important. Having a home inspection may not be a requirement where you’re house hunting, but that doesn’t mean you don’t have the right to know what you’re buying in advance.

Work With Your Real Estate Agent

Not every province in Canada requires a home inspection prior to a real estate transaction, but most agents understand the necessity. Before you even begin looking at homes, make it clear to your agent that you won’t be closing on any properties without an independent inspection report. Many will respect your choice, and some may even be able to refer you to certified inspectors in the area.

Since you won’t be interested in every home you look at, home inspections are most often scheduled after you’ve made an offer on a home. When your real estate agent puts through paperwork, make certain that these documents include wording that makes any sale contingent on the results of a home inspection. Prices can be as low as a flat rate of $175 or may be based on an hourly rate, so start by inquiring about the inspector’s methodology for determining their fee. The information you’ll receive from a thorough inspection is often a bargain at any price.

Be Ready for Bad News

Any home that has previously been lived in will not be in pristine condition. The fact is, most homes need at least some minor repairs and maintenance in order to meet an inspector’s standards, which are often based on minimum code requirements. This could be something as simple as filling in holes near the foundation made by a dog, or something as critical as replacing an old roof.

If you’re prepared for the inspector to find some minor defects, it’s easy to set a minimum repair cost that you’re comfortable with dealing with after the purchase is finalized. However, make sure that your offer documents include a maximum dollar amount as well. This sets a monetary threshold on the results of an inspection, and gives you the opportunity to back out of the sale if the cost of repairs is too high, without violating the offer contract.

How do home inspections help

Home inspections help to prevent home buyers from purchasing a home without knowing all the facts. It’s far better to walk away from several homes because of excessive faults found during the inspection than to rush into one that you may have to spend more repairing than you originally intended.