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What Should You Really Expect From A Home Inspection?

Buying a home in Nanaimo

After looking at dozens of Nanaimo homes for sale you’ve finally found the perfect one. After successfully negotiating the sales contract you schedule the home inspection.

Conducting an inspection is the most important step of the home buying process, so it’s important to have the right expectations. Here’s what buyers and sellers can really expect from a home inspection.

What buyers can expect from a home inspection

  • Check with your home inspector to see if they recommend any additional specialty inspection for pests or the roof, because most inspectors are generalists
  • It’s a good idea to attend the home inspection walkthrough so that your inspector can point out items included in the inspection report
  • Inspectors will always find things that need to be fixed, even minor ones, so don’t expect your home inspection to come back 100% clear
  • Sit down with your real estate agent and prioritize things your want the seller to fix

What sellers can expect from a home inspection

  • Consider having a pre-listing home inspection done so that you can make any needed repairs before a buyer does their inspection
  • Make your home easily accessible for the inspector by decluttering, especially if your buyers will be attending the home inspection
  • Allow enough time for the inspection process and report, since most inspections of Nanaimo homes for sale take between 3 – 4 hours
  • After you receive the buyer’s repair request, meet with your realtor and get her recommendations on how to respond

Home inspection checklist

These are the 10 general items and areas a home inspector will look at. Remember, buyers of can always ask their inspector to look more closely at certain things based on what a seller said on their property disclosure:

  1. Heating system, filter, and ductwork
  2. Air conditioning system (depending on the weather)
  3. Plumbing and electrical systems
  4. Roof and gutters
  5. Attic and basement, including insulation that can be seen
  6. Walls, both interior and exterior
  7. Ceilings for signs leaks or freshly painted areas
  8. Floors, looking for cracks or creaky floor joists
  9. Windows and doors that aren’t sealed or don’t properly close
  10. Foundation for settlement cracks or water seepage

Ways a seller can make the home inspection go better

Home sellers can benefit by helping the buyer’s home inspection go smoothly. Ways that a seller can make the inspection go better include:

  1. Leave keys for storage sheds, electrical panels - and anything else that has a lock - where the inspector can find them
  2. Light all pilot lights, including the furnace even if it’s summertime, so that the home inspector can check everything out
  3. Ensure the home inspector has easy access to your attic, basement, and exterior walls
  4. Turn on all of the utilities before the scheduled home inspection time if the house is vacant

How the wrong expectations can kill a deal

Every now and then you hear people complain about how a home inspection killed their deal. But, it’s not really realistic to blame a home inspector for a transaction falling through.

Here are the three biggest reasons why having the wrong expectations for a home inspection can kill a deal:

  1. Buyers think their new home will be 100% free of needed repairs
  2. Buyers get too emotional and don’t realize that most items on a home inspection report are easily fixed
  3. Sellers and buyers become overwhelmed by home inspection reports that can easily run 40 pages or more in length and forget to ask their real estate agent for guidance about how to best digest the data

Remember to be realistic about your home inspection

Sometimes buyers give sellers a laundry list of repair requests, even ones that are very minor. As a buyer that’s your right, but remember, a seller can always say no, especially if they have a better backup offer.

That’s why it’s important to get advice from your real estate agent on how to determine what’s realistic and what’s not. She’ll help you interpret the information on the home inspection report to so you can make an educated decision about the home you’ll love for years.

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