The home inspection is an important part of the home buying process and sometimes causes both buyers and sellers unnecessary anxiety. It is the step that leads to most negotiations between buyers and sellers. Unlike the final walk-through the home inspection is not generally met with excitement. People get quite nervous until the inspection paperwork is complete and repairs are agreed upon by both parties. No buyer wants to discover that the home they’ve fallen in love with has extensive and expensive issues at its core and sometimes even the sellers aren’t aware of certain issues until the inspection is done.
Here are a few suggestions for how to handle a home inspection:
- This is not the appraisal – Too often people often forget that the home inspection doesn’t determine the property value. It is merely a listing of the property’s condition. It is also an opportunity to check for any code violations or potential hazards.
- You need the right inspector – Realtors should have a recommendation for who to use. This does not mean you are obligated to do so. Make sure you feel comfortable with who is doing the job. Ask for recommendations, check for certification and see if any complaints are registered at the Better Business Bureau.
- Have questions – Jot down any concerns you already have based on your own observations of the house. Better yet, ask the inspector if you can be present during the inspection of the property.
- Be prepared for the report – In Middle Tennessee, the home inspection reports can be several pages long. This can feel overwhelming to both buyer and sellers. This doesn’t mean that every single item listed is a major problem. It does mean that the inspector is obligated to let you know about everything. Spend time looking the report over and determine which items are larger and which are small.
- Be prepared to walk away – If the report uncovers serious issues, you will have to decide if they are problems you want to tackle. Buyers can use this as a bargaining chip on the price of the home, but buyers and sellers don’t always see eye to eye on this.