Three Kinds of Home Inspections

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Pre-purchase home inspection is a necessary part of the real estate process. It’s an opportunity to get your questions answered in a professional and confidential environment. The best way for you to make sure that you’re getting all the information you need is to have a pre-purchase inspection. 

There are three common types of home inspections, each serving a different purpose. Here they are, along with some pros and cons of each type. 

Standard Pre Purchase Building Inspection 

The standard pre-purchase inspection is meant to inform buyers about the condition of the structure. This includes things like roofing, electrical systems, plumbing, walls, foundation and more. 

A standard inspection should be conducted by a licensed inspector who will take measurements and photographs of damaged areas and give you his assessment of whether or not repairs are needed. A good inspector will also let you know if there is anything he didn’t see during his visit. 


You’ll feel confident knowing that the seller has taken care of these issues (and probably others) prior to listing the property. You won’t have to worry about the sellers doing a last minute fix up when it comes time to closing. 


If the problem wasn’t listed on the seller’s disclosure forms, then you may have to pay extra money to repair it yourself. If the seller doesn’t provide the buyer with access to the property, then the inspection can’t be done until the day the contract is signed. 

Homebuyers insurance policy may cover some of the cost of repairing structural problems found during the inspection. However, this isn’t always the case so it’s important to check with your agent before purchasing a home. 

Home Buyer’s Insurance Policy 

This is usually required by lenders as part of the loan approval process. Some states even require it to be included in the contract. 


Buying a home without this coverage can result in the loss of thousands of dollars at settlement. 


Even if you do buy the home with the policy, you still need to file a claim, which means paperwork, additional fees and possibly lost time from work. If your house burns down, you could lose everything. 

Home Buyers Warranty 

This is a service provided through the local Better Business Bureau. The warranty covers defects in appliances, heating and air conditioning systems, water heaters, plumbing, and other items commonly purchased during a home sale. 


It may save you thousands of dollars in the long run. 


The warranty only covers the defect for one year. After that period, you must call the manufacturer directly to schedule repairs. 

For most people, buying a home is a big financial commitment. With all the costs involved, it’s hard to imagine having to spend thousands in repair costs after just moving into a new home. That’s why a standard inspection is often recommended by agents and mortgage brokers. 

These inspections ensure that the seller has disclosed any known hazards that might affect the quality of the home. They also give the buyer a chance to ask questions and request that the seller address those concerns. For example, if the seller hasn’t mentioned termites, the buyer could request that the seller inspect the house and disclose any signs they find. In many cases, the seller will agree to fix the problem right away. 

Of course, the opposite is also true. Sometimes sellers don’t want to disclose certain problems because they don’t want to hurt their chances at selling the property. But if the buyer requests a disclosure form listing all potential problems, then the seller knows that they have to disclose them. 

As with any purchase agreement, both parties should work together to come to terms and set ground rules for how the inspection will be handled. One option that is becoming increasingly popular is to conduct the inspection at the same time the offer is being accepted. By the time the home inspection report arrives, the offer has been accepted and the contract is ready to sign. 

Inspection Reports 

After the inspection is complete, the inspector will prepare a written report. He will explain what he observed, point out any problems that were discovered, and make recommendations regarding what needs to be fixed. 

Some inspectors will include photos and drawings of the identified conditions. These reports are typically mailed to the homeowner within a few days. Others are available online. 

While these reports are helpful, they aren’t always enough. Many times a buyer will want more specific details on particular problems so they can decide whether or not to negotiate with the seller. 

How to Negotiate Your Inspection Report 

To negotiate an inspection report, you’ll want to first contact the inspector. Explain that you would like clarification on a particular issue and ask for a written response. Be prepared with examples of what you’d like to know. 

For example, if the inspector says that the roof leaked and he recommends fixing it, but you know that it was repaired last year, say something like “I’m sorry, I understand that the roof was repaired last summer. I’d like to know if the leak was fixed properly. Did the roof contractor use the proper materials?” 

Once you’ve established rapport, tell him that you’d really like to see pictures of the area where the leak was located. Ask him to show you the photos and then explain to him what you saw. He might respond by saying that the photos aren’t very clear, or he might be able to send you copies of the original photos. 

If the inspector refuses to provide you with the requested information, you shouldn’t accept the report. Instead, you should try to find someone else who will help you. 

As you can see, negotiating a home inspection report isn’t difficult. It’s all about creating a relationship with the person conducting the inspection. Once trust has been established, it becomes much easier to ask for extra information. 

What Should You Do When Negotiating An Inspection Report? 

First, it’s important to remember that the report is intended to protect the interests of both the buyer and the seller. If you have any reason to believe that the inspector is acting unethically, you should bring it to the attention of your attorney. 

Second, never pay someone off to change the results of an inspection. Doing so could lead to civil and criminal charges. 

Third, you should always review the entire report carefully when it arrives. Read every word and look for any errors. If you find any inaccuracies, be sure to notify the inspector immediately. You can also request a copy of the original photo. 

Finally, don’t forget that negotiation is only effective if the two parties are working together. If you start to suspect that the seller is trying to hide something, then you should stop negotiating and move on to another property. There’s no sense in wasting your time if the seller isn’t willing to cooperate. 

Whether you’re buying a home or putting it on the market, a good home inspection can turn a stressful situation into an enjoyable experience. So, don’t wait! Get started today! 

A home inspector will examine the foundation of the house and look for potential problems such as drainage issues, nearby tree roots, cracks, or other signs of movement. If anything looks suspicious, the inspector may recommend that the property be inspected by a residential structural engineer.

A structural engineer can perform a thorough inspection of the foundation, identify the root causes of any problems, and explain how to resolve them.

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Walter Wade is a feature writer focusing on creative writing.