How to hire a home inspector.
You are about to make a significant purchase. Spend thousands of dollars of your hard earned money. Commit thousands of man hours of your life repaying the debt or digging deep into your savings to accomplish this goal. Home Buying. Currently the average cost of a home in SW Michigan is $191,000. This is increasing every year and unless another recession hits, lets hope not, will remain in this trajectory.
You have made the offer, now what.
OK, you have made the offer on the home and now are wondering what to do next. Its time to hire a home inspector. Well, this should be easy you say to yourself. Ill google home inspectors in my town and pick one. Your search results bring up at least a dozen websites. Confusing. So, now you back up and ask your realtor, friend or neighbor for a recommendation. Great. Now you have 3 or 4 more different recommendations. Now, where to start.
Where to start
Start making phone calls and start asking questions. But dont start with I need a home inspection, what do you charge? Asking what do you charge before asking questions does not give the whole story. Ask questions such as: What experience do you have? How long have you been inspecting? What makes you a better inspector than the other guy? Can I see a copy of a previous report? Do you use and special tools? What can I expect? What is the process? Do you mind if I attend? When will I get my report? What will my report consist of? Without asking any of these questions the fee amount gives you no basis as to whether the inspection fee is reasonable or not.
The take away is ask questions first
Ask questions first. If the inspection fee happens to be the lowest, great. But, in most cases it will not. Experienced and well trained inspectors know their value. They know what they bring to the table. Most times that does not include the lowest price in the market. Fun Fact. A typical inspection fee is about 0.180% of the purchase price. Thats less than 1% of the homes value to help protect your investment.
What is a home inspection?
Simply, a home inspection is a non invasive, visual inspection of a property. What that means to you is that the home inspector will inspect the home based on a set of criteria he or she uses to insure a through inspection. Since Michigan currently does not have a state guideline concerning this it falls on the individual inspector to set theirs. It can range from nothing to the National Association of Certified Home Inspectors SOP. Click here to see HomeSpec NACHIs SOP.
A home inspection should consist of the roof system, electrical system, HVAC system and plumbing systems of the home. Additionally it would typically include the exterior and interior surfaces. That is why is critical a guideline is set forth and followed. You as the consumer need to know what you are paying for and what to expect.
A home inspection SOP is equally important in that it outlines what is NOT included in a home inspection. Typically, mold, radon, engineering, fences, sidewalks internal part of furnaces and water heaters and so on. The SOP will outline both. Read it and ask questions. HomeSpec Certified Inspections, LLC always uses the NACHI SOP as our guideline. FUN FACT: Its Florida’s state SOP for home inspectors as well as many other states. Its been vetted and its solid.
Need a home inspection in Kalamazoo, Battle Creek or any of the beautiful SW Michigan cities or counties. Call us.
Certified Master Inspector
HomeSpec Certified Inspections, LLC