It’s a wise idea to have a professional home inspector conduct a home inspection before you sign the contract at closing. The inspector will examine the house for structural damage, non-functioning electrical and plumbing components, repairs that were made and the potential for future damage.
A comprehensive report discussing their findings is a critical element in deciding whether to go ahead with a scheduled closing. If repairs to the house are necessary, the sale price can be renegotiated. Should the report show major damage, the contract can be declared null and void. A home inspection is suggested for all home purchases, be it new construction or an existing home.
Roofing A certified home inspector will thoroughly check the roof from the exterior and underside, looking for water infiltration, wood deck rot, and damaged shingles. In regions that are prone to high-velocity winds, tornadoes and hurricanes, the roof beams and trusses are checked for integrity and are properly fastened to meet local and provincial codes. The proximity of trees to the roof can lead to rotting branches damaging shingles. Gutters can become clogged with falling leaves, which can lead to interior water damage. interior. Skylights and chimney chutes are checked for properly adhered and watertight flashings.
Foundation The foundation or concrete pad is checked for cracks, flaking and pitting along with evidence of water infiltration stains. Issues with the foundation can intensify and affect components of the home's interior. Floor cracks and baseboard separation are indicators of possible structural movement. Structural movement can impact sheetrock walls, separating at electrical outlets and lighting fixtures.
Doors and Windows The inspection will show the integrity of window caulking and if it's contributing to air and water infiltration, can prove to be expensive. Windows are opened to see if they rattle within their frames. If the window rattles or shakes, cold air will come into the home during the winter and hot air during the summer. This will contribute to increased cooling and heating costs and applies to entry and sliding-glass doors. They are opened and shut to see if there is a tight and aligned fit, which reduces air entry.
Plumbing Inspection of the plumbing system includes checking that all facets and toilets function and all sink basins drain. Water pressure is checked and pipe joints are checked for evidence of leaking. If the property has a septic system, it should be cleaned every 3-5 years. The homeowner should have maintenance records. A neglected septic system can be an expensive ordeal with costs ranging up to $50,000 to excavate and replace. Inspectors will the test tap water for bacteria and contaminants such as ph, lead, iron, feces and toxic pesticides. The hot water system will be tested for accuracy in temperature and proper functioning.
Electrical Electrical fixtures, components and panels are tested for compliance with local and provincial codes and preventing a potential fire hazard. The inspector will note smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are installed.
Heating and Cooling The heating and cooling systems are checked for proper annual maintenance, pipe corrosion, unit age and efficiency. An aging unit can be an expensive ordeal to replace.
These are just a sample of the many items that a certified, professional home inspector must check before you move ahead and buy a home.
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