We have answers to your home inspection questions

Do I need a home inspection?

In most cases, purchasing real estate is the largest investment that you will ever make. Gaining insight into the general condition of the building, material defects in any of the components, the age of its systems and corresponding life expectancies, the need for repairs and the positive attributes of the property (i.e.: new roof, low maintenance exteriors and upgrades) gives you the necessary facts to make an informed buying decision.

The simple axiom is that the more you know about the property – the less your exposure to the risks inherent in purchasing the property

What does the home inspector inspect?

Starting at the exterior of the property, the inspector will visually inspect the roof, flashing, chimneys, gutters, and downspouts. The home inspector will then inspect the siding, trim, windows, doors, decks, walkways and driveways. Drainage issues, retaining walls and patios will be inspected as to any negative impact that they may pose on the building.

After the home inspector has completed his survey of the exterior he will inspect thevisible framing members in the attic and basement for signs of structural defects and prior repairs.

The inspector will also visually inspect theelectrical system, the heating and cooling systems, the plumbing, insulation, and major appliances. While these areas are being observed the inspector will note anymaterial defects in the interior components of the home.

In addition to noting any visible material defects, throughout the inspection, the home inspector will explain how the various systems of the home operate and give you information on how to maintain the home. It is a good idea to bring a pad of paper and any questions that you may have to the inspection so the inspector can address your concerns during the on-site walk-through.

After the inspection is complete, the inspector will produce a written report that describes the systems and components of the home and reports the major concerns, safety issues, repairs, improvement items and areas to monitor that were noted during the inspection.  The inspection report will also include important maintenance advice.

Should I attend the home inspection?

YES, if at all possible, we encourage you to attend the home inspection. Valuable information regarding the condition of the home and its systems can be gained from spending just a few hours with one of our home inspectors. Our inspectors welcome your questions throughout the inspection process.  Information on the proper operation and maintenance of the building and its systems is also given at the time of the physical inspection.

At My New Home Inspection we feel very strongly that you are our client, and we want you to have the most accurate and thorough understanding about the condition of your new home. If you cannot attend the inspection, your My New Home Inspection home inspector will complete the inspection, produce the written report and call you to discuss the home and the items contained in the report.

How long does the home inspection take?

Plan on 2½ to 3 hours, but the time can vary depending on the size, age and general condition of the home being inspected. Smaller properties may take less time, while large and complex properties may take longer.

Our inspectors are quite thorough and never rush, so please feel free to ask lots of questions during the inspection!

And we won’t keep you waiting at the end of your inspection for your inspector to write up the report.

Do I need an inspection if I am purchasing a new home?
Absolutely.  Contrary to what many people think, brand new homes should be inspected regardless of whether they will be conveyed with a builder’s warranty. Our inspectors routinely observe structural, heating, cooling, roofing, exterior, plumbing and interior defects in new homes that may go unnoticed by both the builder and purchaser until they become a substantial problem.When the building is completed, the inspector will inspect the exterior, roof, gutters, chimneys, flashings, siding, trim, doors and site. He will also inspect the finished heating, cooling, electrical, plumbing, and interior systems. After the comprehensive inspection and prior to settlement, the inspector will produce a full written report with color photographs
What is the difference between a home inspection and an appraisal?

Both an appraisal and an inspection are vital, however they are different and neither should serve as a substitution for the other.

An appraisal assesses the market value of a home.  Typically, a bank requires an appraisal when approving a loan for either the purchase of a home or the refinancing of an existing loan.  This process is often mistaken by the homeowner as a home inspection. While an appraisal confirms the home’s market value to ensure the lender is not over-insuring the property, it is not intended to provide a thorough assessment of the overall condition and safety of the home.

According to The Federal Housing Administration (FHA), the lender conducts an appraisal to estimate the value of a house, to make certain the house meets FHA minimum property standards and is marketable. However, during a home inspection aqualified home inspector takes a detailed look at the physical structure and systems of a house, from the roof to the foundation. The average time taken to conduct an appraisal is merely a fraction of the time it takes a certified home inspector to perform an inspection of the same house.

Unlike an appraisal, a Certified home inspector will examine the condition of the home’s:

  • Heating system
  • Central air conditioning system (temperature permitting)
  • Interior plumbing and electrical systems
  • Roof, attic and visible insulation
  • Walls, ceilings, floors, windows and doors
  • Foundation, basement and structural components