SAVING YOURSELF A HEADACHE.
Do I really need one or is it just another way for someone to take more of my hard-earned money? The truth is, not only is a home inspection worth it, it can save you from making a huge mistake. The average cost of an inspection is minuscule in comparison to the amount of money it can save you right from the start.
It’s no secret, buying a home is a huge investment. A large portion of your monthly income will be dedicated to this venture for many years to come. We actually encourage all of our clients to set up a home inspection as soon as we have the home under contract. Here is how the process will go once you find a home you like:
- You will work with your agent to submit an offer.
- Your offer will either be accepted, or some more negotiating will take place until you come to an agreement with the seller. Once an agreement is reached, all of the terms are laid out in the form of a contract.
- Once the contract is accepted and signed by both parties, you will be asked to show you are a serious buyer by putting earnest money down (usually 1% of the price you offered) and paying for an option period.
- The earnest money is a deposit to show you are serious about your offer and depending on how the transaction goes, you may or may not get it back.
- The option period that you paid for, usually between $70 and $100 dollars, secures your earnest money and buys you a period of time in which you can cancel the contract and receive your earnest money back without penalty. If you decide to cancel after the period is over, the seller usually keeps the money in return for the amount of time you took their home off the market.
- It is within this option period that you have an inspection performed in order to make sure the home you are interested in doesn’t have underlying problems.
You will want to use a licensed inspector with a strong reputation. This inspector’s job is to investigate the physical condition of the property and to look for signs of potential issues. They usually investigate the surface conditions, for example, they may note some staining on the sheet rock and let you know that they suspect a plumbing leak, however, they will not open up the wall and physically find the problem. Your home inspection is a surface level inspection that will give you a good idea of potential issues that you may want to have a deeper look at before you sign on the dotted line. At the end of the inspection, they will provide a report to you of every possible issue they found and what should be done to remedy the issue or investigate further.
This investment is going to cost hundreds of thousands of dollars over the life of your loan and will be a place that you spend your time for many years to come. Spending a couple hundred bucks upfront will give you the ability to make sure this investment is worth it.