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HOME INSPECTIONS 101

HOME INSPECTIONS 101

Home Inspections are Essential and Elementary .

Today’s home inspector is the Sherlock Holmes of Real Estate. Like Sherlock, an inspector will look for clues. This sleuth’s primary purpose is to assess the quality of the build … find problems with it … Share their observations with you – the client – and offer you some direction (a maintenance schedule, if not repairs). Their report will provide you with a valuable and essential education about the home you are about to purchase, and may dissuade you from making an offer, or leave you with a peace of mind.

WHO DUNNIT?

Inspections are often ordered and paid for by the buyer. A satisfactory inspection is typical condition in an offer to purchase. The buyer can choose to proceed with the deal or cancel it, based on what they learned from the report. Such clauses are only for the buyer’s own benefit and only they can decide if they like the results of the report or not.

On occasion, a buyer will order an inspection before an offer has been tendered. This may occur in a situation where all offers are to be presented on a certain date – and there is time before that date for the buyer to get a report. An offer without a condition for an inspection may be more appealing to a seller than one with the inspection clause.

RED HERRING!

Some sellers opt to order their own Inspection Report prior to putting the home up for sale. In this case, potential buyers can review the seller’s copy and opt not to order their own. This practice tends to promote offers without the condition for an inspection – which is one less way for a buyer to walk away from making a deal. MAKE SURE THAT THIS INSPECTION IS DONE BY A REPUTABLE FIM. CALL THEM TO MAKE SURE THE CONCLUSIONS WERE NOT FALSIFIED.

“FOLLOW YOUR NOSE!”.

There is no story without mystery. Some issues are quite obvious to most casual observers. An odd scent. A stain on the carpet, or ceiling, or drywall. Others are mere invisible crumbs to a naked, untrained eye.

A traditional inspection takes up to 3 hours. Unlike Conan Doyle’s novels, there is no surprise ending. At each stage of the investigation, your inspector will point out their observations to the buyer – positive or negative. All findings are summarized and documented in a binder or PDF format.

This manual serves as a great reference for any maintenance a buyer budgets for each year. An inspection may be the deciding factor in what price a buyer will ultimately settle on, or a key reason to walk away fro a deal.

“DON’T FORGET YOUR SCANNERS!”

Home inspections don’t happen like they do on TV. When you inspect a home before you buy it, the seller is not going to let you tare open walls, peel back carpets or pop open the siding.

Today’s investigators and are equipped with tools and scanners that would even make Mr. Spock raise a brow. These can identify everything from minor heat loss, to major moisture issues behind perfectly painted walls, or fancy new hardwood flooring.

“DON’T PRESUME!”

The right inspector is certified, highly trained (in some cases they possess an engineering degree, or decades of construction experience), and nearly always belong to Canadian Association of Home and Property Inspectors (CAHPI) www.cahpi.ca

“WHY BOTHER?”

A home inspection costs between $450 -1,000 depending on size, number of units, location, and nature of building. An inspection may reveal a $10,000 roof issue, a $20,000 foundation repair, or even a potential inferno waiting to happen due to improper wiring. An inspection may reveal if you would be exposing your family to mold or dangers of Carbon Monoxide. In some cases unforeseen issues could make your home non-insurable. Your bank’s appraiser may even identify defects, which could prevent your lender from offering you a mortgage. An inspection is designed to offer you protection from unforeseeable complications and expenses.

To share your unique inspection experience with us, please send your story to yan@harveykalles.com

Office: P. 416.441.2888; F. 416.441.9926; 2145 Avenue Road, Toronto, Ontario M5M 4B2
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