The simple answer is always get your own inspection regardless if there is a pre-inspection. The sellers provided inspection is nice to have, perhaps, but I don’t trust anything in a transaction unless I have paid and contracted with the service provider. The loyalty to the inspector is likely to the owner or the agent who is paying or referring the provider.
Recently I reviewed a truly hopeless inspection, missing so many issues clearly visible. The icing on the cake, I noticed that the inspector had the same name as the selling agent…. Nothing like keeping the business within the family!
Home inspections protect you from major and minor issues you may not have been aware of.
Not all inspectors are the same and I have certainly worked with good, bad and ugly (although looks are not a component of a good inspector, thankfully!).
I mostly always use the same tried and tested inspector as I know he is detailed to the point of being a little annoying, but I would rather have an incredible detailed report highlighting everything for my client. I do warn my clients I refer to him as Inspector DC (Dream Crusher).
Here’s why I like him:
- Ex General Contractor: he has built and remodeled homes, his knowledge exceeds the required state course hours I believe to be 16 hour then pass a test in order to obtain a license.
- Great equipment and procedure: he tests carbon monoxide levels from furnace, hot and cold output of HVAC, moisture levels in concerning areas, radon (if requested), all outlets, all windows, roof etc etc – his reports are generally between 70-90 pages and not stuffed with pre-written stock info with little value images from the standard inspector reporting programs.
- Good clear, bright, and abundant images: these are highlighted where concerns are present.
- Great with clients – one on one walk through at the end of the inspection talking about all the elements of the home prior to sending the completed report.
It’s like anything, I guess, you get what you pay for. If you want a cheap inspection you’re likely going to get a cheaper service. The company I use is around $400 for the inspection, this does not include Radon/Mold testing; however, this is the best investment (along with a sewer scope) to provide peace of mind and to also provide useful information on if you need to walk away or ask for fixes.
Remember home inspections are not there to nickel and dime the seller, the intent is not to ask for every tiny scuff or issue to be fixed – it’s there to really find the things not known or seen in showings and spot issues which could significantly diminish the enjoyment and value of the home.