A professional home inspector evaluates the current condition of a house. It is NOT an appraisal, which estimates the market value of a property. A home inspection report can be used by home sellers to identify and make repairs before putting it on the market, or by potential home buyers to learn as much as possible about a particular house before buying it.
A professional home inspector should visually examine the home’s exterior, foundation (including entering the crawlspace), walls, roof, flashing, gutters, attic, basement, insulation, garage, electrical system, visible plumbing, air conditioning and heating, and the general condition of the interior. Generally an inspector is looking for bad conditions or safety-related problems, and does not cover small or cosmetic items that are readily apparent. If possible, you should be present for the inspection, to see what the inspector sees and to ask questions about items that concern you.
A home inspection is a thorough visual examination of the home and property. Many mortgage companies insist on a home inspection report before agreeing to a mortgage, so a pre-sale inspection enables you to address problems before you even put the house on the market. It also removes any questions about the condition of your home for you and a potential home buyer, improving the speed, price and likelihood of a sale The inspection process usually takes two to three hours, during which time the house is examined from the ground up. It includes observation and, when appropriate, operation of the plumbing, heating, air conditioning, electrical, and appliance systems, as well as structural components, such as the roof, foundation, basement, exterior and interior walls, chimney, doors and windows.
A thorough home inspection covers more than 1,000 items, everything from the foundation to roof and takes two to three hours depending on the size of the property. The report should reflect the condition of about 400 items.
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