“Wow, that was quick and easy!” You can bet you’ll never hear those words from anyone who has just bought a house.
The home-buying process is long and complex. Some buyers are tempted to skip as many steps as they can, including real estate inspections. In too many cases, they face the expensive and dangerous consequences of that decision down the line.
If you’re in the home buying or home shopping process, there are several reasons why you need a home inspection.
1. Negotiate a Fair Sale Price
Buying a home may be the most expensive negotiation you navigate in your life. Why go into it without truly knowing what you’re getting?
A home inspection is the only way to truly know the condition of a home and its many critical components. A knowledgeable home inspector can evaluate your electrical, plumbing, HVAC, and more to give you a thorough report.
If this report uncovers problems, you can use them to renegotiate to ensure you are paying a fair price.
2. Repair Any Necessary Problems
Home repairs are not only expensive. They’re also a hassle to handle while you live in the home. Between dust, noise, and the discomfort of having people you don’t know in your home, the environment doesn’t exactly make for a cozy atmosphere.
If you have a home inspection before you buy the house, you can have any repairs done before you move in. You may be able to request that the sellers fix the problems before completing the sale. Otherwise, you could negotiate the repair costs out of the sale price and complete the repairs after closing but before you move in.
3. Anticipate Future Issues
An inspector has the expertise to see more than the problems directly in front of them. They can also identify when a home has potential problems or dangers on the horizon.
For example, your inspector may be able to detect that the home’s plumbing system isn’t adequate for the house. It may have worked fine for the previous owners, but if you have a larger family, the system could cause a septic backup.
This allows you to know what future repairs the home may need before you buy it. You’ll be able to anticipate the expenses in your future and fix problems that were hiding below the surface.
4. Have the Option to Back Out
There are people who buy a home and later uncover so many problems that they regret buying the house at all. Is there anything worse than having potentially hundreds of thousands of dollars tied up in a home that keeps costing you more money?
In a typical home inspection contingency in a real estate contract, you have an out. If the inspection uncovers major issues, you can stop the sale altogether. This is a critical lifeline you want to have during such an important legal process.
5. Catch Issues Early
In your health, there are many issues that are easy to treat if you catch them early. If you let them go, they become far larger problems. The same is true for your home.
For example, a home may have a minor water leak into the attic. Because it’s in the attic, no one has seen it or knows the leak is happening.
If you don’t fix it, the water damage gets worse and worse. Mold begins to grow and spread throughout the home. Eventually, the water damage could weaken the attic floor so badly that it collapses into the home.
A home inspector can find issues like this while they’re still easy to fix so they don’t become dangerous or financially crippling disasters.
6. Save Money
Homes are expensive, and there’s no way around it. In the long run, though, a home inspection could make yours far less pricey.
A home inspection only costs a few hundred dollars. However, it can uncover thousands of dollars in problems that you can negotiate out of your sale price. You have little to lose and far more to save.
7. Protect Your Family
Problems and damages in your home can do far more than cost you money. In the worst-case scenarios, they can pose serious risks to your family.
A home inspector will uncover issues that could put you at risk for a fire. With a licensed structural engineer they can also identify any structural issues and countless other types of dangers within the home. You’ll have the option of how you would like to proceed once any issues are brought to light.
8. Avoid Legal Problems
Another complication that homebuyers don’t think about is the future legal problem they could arise if they don’t get an inspection.
Let’s say the seller built an illegal addition onto the home. You don’t realize the addition is illegal because you didn’t get an inspection. Years later, authorities discover the addition and you face the legal consequences because you’re the homeowner.
This is especially critical if your home is meant to be an income property. For example, the seller might be renting out the basement as a separate apartment, and you would like to do the same. If the basement doesn’t meet the legal requirements for renting, you could get into a sticky situation.
In both of these cases, a home inspection can find out everything you need to know in advance.
Understanding the Importance of Real Estate Inspections
Buying a house is a stressful process for everyone. Imagine how much more stressful it would be without real estate inspections to tell you exactly what you’re getting.
For all the reasons above, a house inspection is a critical step for anyone buying a home. Your wallet and your family’s safety will benefit from it, not to mention your own peace of mind.
To schedule your inspection today, contact our Tulsa home inspectors.