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Tips on Choosing a Certified Home Inspector

Purchasing a home can be one of the most significant purchases one will ever make, and it can also be a stressful ordeal.  An encouraging way to reduce the stress is to be fully aware of what you are purchasing. A certified home inspector can give you peace of mind when making such a large investment.  Once you found a home that you would like to buy, you should always make an offer to purchase contingent on a home inspection.  Hiring a home inspector to assess the property is a smart move and can save a lot of money down the road.  It is important to understand the purpose of the home inspection.  The goal of a home inspection is to provide you with information about problems in the home before you actually purchase the property.  Your certified home inspector should be looking for potential problems with the roof, structure, electricity, fire hazards etc.  Here are some key points to keep in mind when choosing a qualified home inspector:

  • Always take time to research the home inspectors you are considering to hire.  Make sure to check their credentials and check to see if they are certified by a home inspector school or licensed by your state or province. 
  • You will also want to make sure that your potential home inspector is insured.  Ask the home inspector to see their proof of insurance.
  • Who referred the inspector?  The best referrals are often times from someone you know and trust personally.  If the home inspector has not been reliably referred to you, be sure to ask for references from past clients.
  • When it comes time for the home inspection to actually be performed, make a point to be there and ask questions about the areas that may need repair.  Be sure to ask questions regarding whether or not these repairs are major or minor.
  • Make sure to ask how long the home inspection will take.  A thorough inspection should take at least two hours.  If your potential inspector tells you that it will take any less time than that, be cautious and find someone else to do the job.
  • Check to see if the inspector is affiliated with any professional organizations.  There are many local, state, and national organizations inspectors can join. 
  • Ask your potential inspector what type of report you will receive once the inspection has been completed.  Reports differentiate between handwritten versions, checklist version, narrative versions, or computerized reports.  The report should be thorough and should in your hands within 48 hours after the inspection has been performed. 
  • In some cases the home inspector may suggest additional inspections, such as a pest or radon inspection, which may not be covered under the regular inspection. 

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