Questions to Ask Your Home Inspector in the St. Louis Area
Buying a home is one of the most important investments you will make in your lifetime and is also one of the most exciting times for you as a buyer, especially if you are a first-time homebuyer! When your offer is accepted and the ball gets rolling, one of the first and most important steps is scheduling a building inspection with a reputable and experienced home inspector.
Having a home inspection not only protects you but also empowers you with a plethora of knowledge of efficiencies and sometimes deficiencies in a home you are considering for purchase. In order to gain this knowledge, you must be armed with the right questions to ask your licensed inspector.
When speaking to Chris Orf at Orf Home Inspections, a reputable inspection company in the St. Louis area, he shared with us some of the questions home buyers should ask when choosing a home inspection company. Here are some of the things you should ask inspection companies before booking your inspection to help you choose the right one for you!
1. Do you guarantee your work and do you offer any warranty on certain inspections you perform?
2. What type of inspections do you offer? Meaning, can I get all the services I need from your company to eliminate having to use several different companies for one inspection?
3. How much do you charge for a home inspection?
4. How long have you been in business and do you have references you can offer?
5. How long will the inspection take?
6. Do you offer the ability to pay for my home inspection at closing or do you require payment day of service?
Note that the majority of ALL inspection companies will not release the report without payment on the day of service.
7. When will I receive my inspection report and what will our relationship look like after the inspection?
8. Will you be available to discuss any concerns or answer any questions I may have when negotiating the inspection notice?
It is typical for home buyers, and in many cases, their Buyer Specialist, to attend the inspection itself. When at the building inspection appointment of your new home it is very important to not distract the inspector, as they have to be focused on the features that need to be inspected. Therefore, be sure to consolidate all your questions for the inspector prior to the appointment. This will eliminate any distractions and the potential for the inspector to miss something important. Going into the inspection appointment with a clear understanding of what an inspector can and cannot do will ensure you walk away with a comfortable feeling.
Do note these important points while at your appointment:
- Inspectors inspect from the roof to the foundation and all the guts in between.
- Inspectors can ONLY inspect what they can see. They cannot cut into a drywalled basement to look for any structural defects or repaired areas of the foundation.
- Home inspectors WILL go slowly through the entire home, checking everything on their list to look for defects or deficiencies. The inspector will point out things to you that look good or may need repair or further insight from the seller. When this back and forth is happening with the inspector, be sure to ask all questions that come to mind about the items they are going over with you. This is also the ideal time to find out where important items are located such as the water shut off, main power switches, location of GFCI controlling garage, and exterior outlets.
- Feeling nervous during this process is normal; buying a home is an investment and probably the biggest purchase a person makes in their lifetime. It is important to not panic if the inspection shows a problem that needs addressing. That is what the inspection is for and a buyer should walk away with a list in their mind of what is of utmost importance for the seller to fix and what can be taken care of by the buyer after closing.
A building inspection appointment should be an informational meeting with a professional inspector and yourself. It’s important to remember that during this appointment you are also provided access to the home for a few hours which gives you ample time to take measurements, take pictures, and offers a distinct idea of how moving in will look and what changes you may want to make once closing occurs. This appointment is more often than not, the last time at the home prior to the walkthrough, so be sure to go into the appointment with the mindset of information gathering. House to house, depending on age and care, many have similar issues and A+ ratings are hard to achieve. Using the right home inspector is the first important step in order to garner all the information one needs when moving forward after the home inspection is complete.
Looking to purchase a home in the St. Louis area?
The Chad Wilson Group is a team of real estate professionals helping home buyers like you in the Greater St. Louis Area (St. Charles, St. Louis, Warren, and Lincoln Counties). Whether you are a first-time or an experienced homebuyer, we will work on your behalf as experts in your corner throughout the entire process to help make everything easier and more manageable. We work closely with many reputable inspectors and can vett and recommend a trusted company to you for your home inspection, so you can be assured that you are getting a thorough and complete inspection. Contact us or fill out the form below with any questions you may have or to get the process started!