Although a home inspection is the safest way for potential buyers to invest their money, it also one of those necessary evils that can either make or break a deal. It is estimated that atleast 1 out of 20 contracts are canceled due to home inspection. A home inspection is done to point out flaws and defects that might cause expensive bills down the road.
Unfortunately, the presence of some people can make the entire process much difficult than it already is. Therefore, we are here to shed some light on the role of the home inspector as well as other parties that might be joining the process as well.
Top Inspection Players
The Home Inspector
The first and most important player in the entire process is the home inspector. After all, he is the only individual trained and skilled enough to check and inspect every corner of the house. It might be that your realtor refers you to a home inspector but you should know that you have a say in it as well. You get to choose your own home inspector.
With that being said, most homeowners tend to go with their chosen home inspectors instead of hiring the one referred by the realtor. The reason behind it is that the home inspectors are on the payroll of realtors. They work as a team to make money and therefore, the home inspector will neglect major drawbacks or defects just to pass the house. As a result, the realtor gets to sell you a flawed property, while the home inspector gets away with his commission.
Once you hire a home inspector, he will visit you at the provided date and time. On average, home inspections last anywhere between 3-4 hours so you will have to be patient. Furthermore, the home inspector will check the main areas of the house such as the attic and basement along with drainage pipes and electric utilities, etc.
Additionally, the roof needs to be checked as well. Home inspectors are trained to catch cosmetic fixtures. Cosmetic fixtures are basically a technique used by realtors to hide the major flaws of the property instead of fixing them.
If your realtor keeps stressing you about hiring the referred home inspector, you should sense something fishy right away. Therefore, steer clear of such suggestions and referrals.
The Buyer or the Buyer’s Agent
While the home inspection is being carried out, it is equally important for the buyer to be present as well. This is a golden opportunity for the buyer to ask any questions from the home inspector about the systems installed in the property. However, if for some reason, the buyer cannot make it, their agent can attend the home inspection.
In addition to that, some states have limitations related to who is allowed to attend a home inspection. For instance, some states have a rule where the realtors are not allowed to attend home inspections and it is only the inspector by him or herself. And then, there are some states that allow only licensed realtors to attend home inspections.
There is another reason for the buyer’s agent to be present. An agent who is typically more experienced than the buyer himself can use the findings to negotiate a good price. Otherwise, if only the buyer is present, a home inspector can easily get away with hiding flaws and defects.
Who Shouldn’t Attend a Home Inspection?
The Seller or the Listing Agent
Even though the seller has a right to be at the inspection but he or she shouldn’t be. The reason is that the buyer is paying for the home inspection and not the seller. The information as a result received belongs to the potential buyer and not the seller. Therefore, if you have the seller joining the home inspection, you should request them not to follow the inspector and find someplace to sit.
You can expect the seller to become furious but the objective is transparency. The realtor cannot expect the seller to be followed by an agent like a spy. Then again, the home inspection is owned by the buyer. He/she is free to roam the property without any interference.
Family or Friends of the Buyer
If it is your first time buying a property, you might be tempted to bring along a family member or friend. However, that might not be in your best friend. Your friend or family member might feel the pressure of finding issues. As a result, you end up with issues that do not really exist or are a cause for concern.
For instance, your friend or family member might spot outdated cabinets or doorknobs. Such things are minor when it comes to home inspections. Irrespective of how well-maintained old properties are, there are still going to be some minor factors that do not affect the overall condition of the house.
A General Contractor
You might think that bringing a general contractor along will help you find real flaws and defects. However, the fact of the matter is that he is neither a realtor nor a home inspector. Therefore, the general contractor will only find issues to become a hero.
To prevent issues and problems arising as a result, it is suggested that the general contractor helps you understand the home inspection report instead of finding defects. Once you get a grip of the property’s condition, the general contractor can help you negotiate a price for the property.
In addition to that, if you end up buying the property, you can use the general contractor to get things fixed or replaced. However, you should look out for the so-called professionals. If you feel that the team working on the repairs and replacement is not skilled enough, you should hire professionals for the job.
At the end of the day, when it comes to home inspection, you should conform to the rules and regulations pertaining to who gets to attend it. The realtor should keep things transparent and not force the buyer to accept his home inspector referral. On the other hand, the buyer should not bring a family member, friend, or anyone else that focuses on finding problems just for the sake of home inspection. A home inspection will only be successful and effective if both sides accept each other’s limitations.