House Inspection Checklist for Buyers Miami Homestead
House inspection checklist is written in a clear, concise and informative manner. Each customized report is written in a narrative format allowing us to clearly explain defects or repairs, make suggestions and even provide positive information about the house. House Inspection Checklist for Buyers Miami Homestead
¿WHAT IS A HOUSE INSPECTION?
A house inspection is a limited, non-invasive examination of the condition of a house, often in connection with the sale of that home. Home inspections are usually conducted by a house inspector who has the training and certifications to perform such inspections. The inspector prepares and delivers to the client a written report of findings.
The client then uses the knowledge gained to make informed decisions about their pending real estate purchase. The house inspector describes the condition of the home at the time of inspection but does not guarantee future condition, efficiency, or life expectancy of systems or components.
A house inspector is sometimes confused with a real estate appraiser. A home inspector determines the condition of a structure, whereas an appraiser determines the value of a property. In the United States, although not all states or municipalities regulate home inspectors, there are various professional associations for home inspectors that provide education, training, and networking opportunities.
Besides a professional home inspection is an examination of the current condition of a house. It is not an inspection to verify compliance with appropriate codes; building inspection is a term often used for building code compliance inspections in the United States. A similar but more complicated inspection of commercial buildings is a property condition assessment. House inspections identify problems but building diagnostics identifies solutions to the found problems and their predicted outcomes.
HOUSE INSPECTION STANDARDS AND EXCLUSIONS IN MIAMI HOMESTEAD
Inspectors check the roof, basement, heating system, water heater, air-conditioning system, structure, plumbing, electrical, and many other aspects of buildings. They look for system and major component defects and deficiencies, improper building practices, those items that require extensive repairs, items that are general maintenance issues, and some fire and safety issues. A general house inspection is not designed to identify building code violations, although some deficiencies identified may also be code violations.
A house inspection is not technically exhaustive and does not imply that every defect will be discovered. Some inspection companies offer 90-day limited warranties to protect clients from unexpected mechanical and structural failures; otherwise, inspectors are not responsible for future failures. A general inspection standard for buildings other than residential homes can be found at the National Academy of Building Inspection Engineers.
House inspection “standards of practice” serve as minimum guidelines that describe what is and is not required to be inspected by the various associations mentioned during a general home inspection. Many inspectors exceed these standards (permissible) and may also offer ancillary services such as inspecting pools, sprinkler systems, checking radon levels, and inspecting for wood-destroying organisms.
TYPES OF INSPECTIONS FOR BUYERS IN MIAMI HOMESTEAD
HOUSE BUYERS INSPECTION
Buyers inspections are the most common type of inspection in the United States. The persons purchasing the property hire an inspector to help identify major defects and other problems so they can make an informed decision about the building’s condition and the expense of related repairs.
HOUSE SELLERS INSPECTION FOR BUYERS
A homeowner who is selling their house hires an inspector to identify problems with their house. The seller can elect to share the report with any potential buyers or to make any necessary repairs to the house is known to be in good condition encouraging a quick sale. One house inspectors’ organization offers a program which helps market a house as “Move-In Certified”, that is, the house is in a condition where the new owners can promptly move in without making substantial repairs.
If you’ve signed a contract to purchase a house, a key step before completing the sale is getting a professional home inspection. Make sure to keep this home inspection checklist handy – the inspection is often the last chance you’ll have to go inside the home before the final walkthrough.
“In my experience, the majority of house buyers don’t know that much about what they are buying and are relying on the inspection to fill in the many gaps in their knowledge,” says home inspector Scott Brown, owner of Brightside Home Inspections in Syracuse, New York.
If your purchase agreement has an inspection contingency — and it should — a home inspection that reveals serious flaws can allow you to walk away from the deal without penalty. It can also allow you to ask the seller to make repairs before closing, saving you money and potentially some hassle.
HOUSE INSPECTION CHECKLIST FOR BUYERS: WHAT HOUSE INSPECTORS LOOK FOR
House inspectors are looking for the safety, operation, and condition of each component they inspect, Brown says. Does the item pose any safety hazards directly or indirectly to inhabitants? Does it operate as the manufacturer intended? Is it in good condition?
A house inspector will check many but not all components of the home because of limitations related to safety, accessibility, and their expertise.
Here’s what inspectors will typically check, as outlined in the inspection standards put forth by 3 industry groups: the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI), the National Society of Home Inspectors (NSHI) and the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors (InterNACHI).
Interior of the home
An inspection of the home’s interior should include:
Walls, ceilings, and floors
Steps, stairways, and railings
Countertops and cabinets
Doors and windows
Garage doors and operators
Installed kitchen appliances
An inspector might note whether a crack in a wall appears to be cosmetic or whether it might indicate a structural issue like a sinking foundation.
EXTERIOR OF THE HOME CHECKLIST FOR BUYERS
Outside the home, inspectors typically examine:
Wall coverings, flashing and trim
Decks, balconies, stoops, steps, porches, and railings
Eaves, soffits, and fascias visible from the ground
Plants, grading, drainage and retaining walls
Garages and carports
Walkways, patios, and driveways
An inspector will also examine the roof, gutters, downspouts, and any skylights, chimneys and other roof penetrations. In this part of the inspection, the home inspector will be looking for things like curled shingles that might indicate a roof is wearing out.
PLUMBING CHECKLIST FOR BUYERS
When it comes to plumbing, expect your home inspector to look at the:
Fixtures and faucets
Drain, waste and vent systems
Sump pumps and sewage ejectors
The checklist for buyers electrical inspection will include looking at:
Service entrance conductors, cables, and raceways
Service equipment and main disconnects
Interior components of service panels and subpanels
Overcurrent protection devices
Light fixtures, switches, and receptacles
The major concern here is anything that might present a fire hazard.
For the home’s heating, ventilation and cooling system (HVAC), the inspector should check out:
Access panels that can be readily opened
Installed heating and cooling equipment
Fuel-burning fireplaces and stoves
Vent systems, exhaust systems, flues and chimneys
Insulation and vapor retarders in unfinished spaces
Home inspectors may enter crawlspaces if they have enough clearance and attics if the load-bearing components aren’t covered by insulation. They may examine the:
Wall structure, ceiling structure, and roof structures
WHAT HOME INSPECTORS FOR BUYERS DON’T EXAMINE IN MIAMI HOMESTEAD
The list above might seem comprehensive, but there are many things that home inspectors aren’t required to look at. These include systems and components that aren’t readily accessible. House Inspection Checklist for Buyers Miami Homestead
A home inspector won’t peel up the carpet to see if there are cracks in the foundation, nor will he cut a hole in the bathroom wall to look for hidden mold or rusty pipes. House Inspection Checklist for Buyers Miami Homestead
They don’t have to move furniture, plants, snow, ice or debris that might be in the way, so try not to buy a house in the winter if you want the roof examined. Inspectors also won’t do anything that might damage the property or pose a danger to themselves, including entering crawl spaces or attics that are too tight, walking on the roof or lighting a fire in a fireplace. House Inspection Checklist for Buyers Miami Homestead
In addition, inspectors need not try to guess how much life is left in the home’s air conditioner, furnace, roof, dishwasher or other systems and components. If they note something that isn’t working, they don’t have to attempt to diagnose the cause or estimate the cost to fix it, nor will they try to estimate the cost of your monthly utility bills. House Inspection Checklist for Buyers Miami Homestead
They also don’t have to operate underground systems, such as lawn irrigation systems or underground storage tanks. House Inspection Checklist for Buyers Miami Homestead
Inspectors don’t check for termites or other wood-destroying insects, nor do they test for environmental hazards like radon or asbestos (though some inspectors offer additional testing as an add-on service).
And they don’t have to test smoke detectors, every single light switch, and a fixture in the home (only a representative number) or appliances that aren’t permanently installed, such as window air conditioning units.
Don’t expect them to weigh in on whether you should proceed with the purchase, either. And if you’re buying a condo unit, they won’t inspect the building’s common areas.
See what the inspector sees and ask lots of questions
You should be there in person while the inspector is going through the house, says Colorado real estate agent Mindy Jensen, community manager for the real estate investing site BiggerPockets.com. “Follow them around the house and ask questions if you don’t understand something they say.”
Jensen says the best time to ask the inspector a question is when you are both in the home, in the exact spot the inspector is talking about. “What might sound like a big deal to you may actually be a small thing, and what might sound small could be enormous,” she says. House Inspection Checklist for Buyers Miami Homestead
DOES A HOME INSPECTION FOR BUYERS COME WITH GUARANTEES IN MIAMI HOMESTEAD?
Home inspectors aren’t required to guarantee their work. That means if they miss something that turns out to be a costly problem after you complete the sale, you may have little recourse.
But a home inspector can be sued for failing to meet state guidelines for home inspections, which vary by state, says Brown, the home inspector. There are examples of home inspectors being successfully sued as well as unsuccessful lawsuits where homebuyers sued as a result of buyer’s remorse. House Inspection Checklist for Buyers Miami Homestead
Look for an inspector that’s backed by an organization like the International Association of Certified Home Inspectors, which says it will buy your home back within 90 days of closing if one of its participating home inspectors misses anything substantive. House Inspection Checklist for Buyers Miami Homestead
FINDING A QUALIFIED HOME INSPECTOR FOR BUYERS IN MIAMI HOMESTEAD
Since many homebuyers don’t know any home inspectors, they often rely on recommendations from their real estate agents.
“I always give my buyers the names of at least three home inspectors who I am reasonably sure, based on past experience, are honest and qualified in their trade,” says Irene Keene, a sales associate with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage in Madison, Connecticut. House Inspection Checklist for Buyers Miami Homestead
However, Keene recommends that her buyers do their own due diligence on each inspector. Her clients are required to sign a disclosure stating that the vendors’ names are being provided as a courtesy only and that the brokerage cannot warrant the vendors’ work. House Inspection Checklist for Buyers Miami Homestead
Homebuyers should be aware that real estate agents and home inspectors have slightly different goals when it comes to a home inspection, Brown says.
“Most realtors certainly don’t want their clients to buy a money pit, but they also prefer a home inspector that may be a bit lenient in their analysis,” he says. It’s in the agent’s best interest to close on the current house and move on. House Inspection Checklist for Buyers Miami Homestead
Agents get paid not for showing houses but for selling them. Inspectors, however, are indifferent to whether or not their client buys the current house. They get paid simply for doing the inspection. House Inspection Checklist for Buyers Miami Homestead
THE BOTTOM LINE IN CHECKLIST FOR BUYERS MIAMI HOMESTEAD
Getting a home inspection and carrying around a home inspection checklist is nearly always good ideas. Any inspection has limitations, but it’s worth the few hundred dollars you will pay to get a better idea of what you’re signing up for. Further, an inspection will often pay for itself in items you can ask the seller to repair. House Inspection Checklist for Buyers Miami Homestead
“You don’t want any surprises after you have taken possession,”
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