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What You May Not Know About Home Inspections Part II

A home inspection has become a major aspect of most residential Red Deer real estate sales. Knowing more about how home inspections work and what to look for in a qualified home inspector can help you guide your purchase decisions.

Timing is Everything

The majority of home inspections are done after a buyer presents an offer. In essence, the home inspection has become one of the factors that helps close a sale.


Buyers can opt for a home inspection at any point as long as the seller is willing. A home inspection before an offer can prevent any awkward deal-halting surprises. By knowing about problems in advance, you have more leeway to give the seller time to determine how they will address the issues.


Context Helps

A home inspector may simply produce a list of problems with the house without any further description. To most people, these lists may be largely useless because they present all issues as disconnected or of equal importance.


Have your inspector thoroughly describe all the problems or areas of concern they saw during the inspection. You will want them to give you an assessment of how “bad” something is to help you separate minor issues from major ones. You will want to know how many issues are connected to each other, or if ignoring one will cause the others to become worse.


The absolute best service an inspector can provide is a personal walkthrough through the home, pointing out everything they noticed. Since this step will add more time to the already time-consuming home inspection process, you may have to settle for photos.


Regardless, request that the inspector does a write up describing the components they were worried about in paragraph form. This documentation will help you understand the information they provide.


Inspectors Should Be Insured or Bonded

There are two main areas of financial risk when hiring a contractor. Insurance solves both of them.


The first issue could be that the inspector does not have worker’s compensation insurance. In the event that they injure themselves during the inspection, they could sue the home owner or place a lien on their house, halting the sale.


The second problem could arise if the inspector makes an inaccurate assessment that leads to major problems down the road. Errors and omissions insurance policies cover the inspector in case they make such a mistake. In the event of a negative outcome resulting from their neglect, the insurance company will often offer you a settlement rather than you having to force litigation.


Between these two posts, you should have a much better idea of how to hire a home inspector and what to expect from them. With this information in hand, you can make a home purchase decision confidently and without hesitation.


To learn even more about the home buying process, take a look at our buying page.

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Data is supplied by Pillar 9™ MLS® System. Pillar 9™ is the owner of the copyright in its MLS®System. Data is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed accurate by Pillar 9™.
The trademarks MLS®, Multiple Listing Service® and the associated logos are owned by The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) and identify the quality of services provided by real estate professionals who are members of CREA. Used under license.