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An Insider’s Guide to Home Inspections

Buying a home is a big commitment, and it can be scary. If you’re a first-time homebuyer, it’s especially intimidating! You’ll want to be sure you have as much information about your new home as possible before you make the commitment.

When your certified home inspector arrives on the day of the inspection, be prepared to take notes and ask questions. While the report that you’ll receive after your inspection provides plenty of photos and detailed information, there are some things you can only learn through experience. Observing your own inspection will allow you to better understand any maintenance issues the inspector finds, pick up some simple DIY tips for home maintenance and prioritize the repairs you’ll need to make.

By attending your inspection, you’ll not only gain valuable insight about your home, but you’ll have the opportunity to ask questions as you think of them. As you prepare for your home inspection, keep in mind a few major issues that your inspector will be on the lookout for:

  • Condition of the roof

  • Visible damage to the exterior of the home

  • Condition of the basement, foundation and/or crawlspace

  • Problems with the heating system

  • Plumbing issues

  • Electrical defects

  • Condition of bathrooms, including toilets, sinks, tubs and showers

  • Condition of doors, windows and the interior of the home

  • Presence of smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors

It’s also important to understand what an inspector does NOT do. An inspector’s job is to provide a visual summary of the current state of the property. It’s a homeowner’s responsibility to understand that damage can occur at any time, and an inspector can only provide information about the home at the specific time that it’s inspected. Factors like weather conditions and normal daily use will affect a home’s condition. This is one reason it’s important to have your home inspected on a regular schedule.

In addition, some issues with your new property may not be visible at the time of inspection. While Giles Property Inspection will inform you of any evidence of underlying problems, like leaks, mold or pests, the inspection cannot guarantee that other problems with the structure or condition of your home don’t exist.

Your inspection report may seem overwhelming at first. But if you were present for your inspection, there shouldn’t be any surprises! The report simply summarizes the findings in one convenient document that you can use to plan and prioritize your repairs. It’s important to keep in mind that the most urgent repairs typically involve preventing water from entering your home. Your next priority should be any other structural or safety concerns. Once these issues have been addressed, you can focus on any other inconveniences that were identified in the inspection.

As a new homeowner, Giles Property Inspection suggests an annual budget of 1-2% of the property value for home maintenance. Of course, scheduling an annual home maintenance inspection can ensure that you catch any potential issues before they become a bigger hassle. Other services, such as testing for radon, air quality and water quality are also available if you have any concerns about the safety of your home.

For more information about home inspections and other services provided by Giles Property Inspection, visit our website and follow us on Facebook!

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