Questions For Choosing a Home Inspector

When you’ve found a home inspector you think you’d like to hire, put him on the spot. You’ve got a lot at stake. Interview him and give him the chance to tell you why you should choose him. Here are some questions you can ask him.

Is he or she certified by the proper state, county, or city agencies? Does he have the appropriate license and credentials for where you live? It would be a good idea if you can find out what’s required and where to go to find out about the inspector you’re considering. Your state may be able to track your inspector’s continuing education as well as any complaints that have been filed against him.

What trade associations does he or she belong to and is he in good standing with them? What certificates does he or she have? A few organizations for home inspectors include the International Code Council, American Society of Home Inspectors, Independent Home Inspectors of North America, and the National Association of Certified Home Inspectors. Each state has organizations for home inspectors as well.

What’s his educational background? Does he keep up to date with the changes in the industry, including changing laws or codes? Does he have a background in home construction? Does he have a wealth of knowledge about building trades or remodeling? What did he do before becoming an inspector?

Does he have a background as a contractor or engineer? Keep this in mind. Though it’s not necessary for your inspector to have an engineering degree or to have been a contractor for many years, the principles he should have learned from such an education and experience are valuable.

How many years of experience does he have inspecting homes? How many has he inspected?

Is he a full time inspector? Avoid someone who does inspections part time or only on weekends. You don’t want someone who’s been an inspector for five or ten years, but only on a part-time basis. Home inspection should be his primary business. Has he examined homes similar to the one you’re having inspected? All homes have similarities, but newer homes have different issues and risks than older homes.

Does his/her company carry errors and omission (E&O) insurance?

Does he get on roofs when possible? Does he get in crawlspaces when they’re accessible? Will he go into the basement, and climb into the attic? He should be capable and willing to go wherever he needs to for doing a thorough inspection. Granted, there may be times when it’s not possible to fully inspect all of these areas, due to physical risks to the inspector or his equipment, or weather conditions may not permit it. But it’s not acceptable to overlook these because he doesn’t want to or has some other excuse.

Will he let you go with him while he does the inspection? It’s generally recommended that you do go with him because he can answer any questions you have. If you’re buying the home, it helps if you have confidence in the inspector’s performance and the condition of the home. Of course, you must not hinder or distract him. Don’t get near any open electric areas, and you shouldn’t get on the roof with him due to safety concerns.

What kind of report will you get from him? When and how will you get it? Make sure you have plenty of time to respond to his findings. Will the report include pictures? Photographs make any defects or damage clear, especially in areas mainly accessible to the inspector. Pictures are helpful for any service and repair workers who may be needed later.

What will the inspection cost? Your inspector’s fee will vary depending on several factors, such as where the home is located and the home’s size. Other factors may include the home’s age and the need for septic, well or radon testing. No matter how important the cost is to you, don’t cut corners. The cost shouldn’t be the deciding factor on whether to get the home inspected. The sense of security and knowledge you gain from an inspection is well worth the cost. The lowest-priced inspection may not a bargain.

If the home has proven to be in good condition when the inspector gives you his report, you may be asking yourself if the inspection was necessary. The answer is definitely Yes. You wouldn’t have known what you know about the home otherwise, and you can now complete your sale or purchase with confidence and peace of mind.

Shopping for a New Home – How to Ensure You Don’t End Up House Poor

Whether you are looking for your very first home, or you’re looking to sell your current one and find something new, the house hunting and buying experience is one that is filled with excitement, joy, pitfalls, and challenges. One of the biggest challenges facing home buyers is to ensure they find a home that is within their budget and doesn’t leave them house poor. So how can you make sure you don’t end up in this unfortunate situation? Let’s take a closer look.

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What Does House Poor Mean?

You’ve probably heard the term “house poor” thrown around before, and it may have left you wondering what it actually means. House poor means you are able to pay for your mortgage and utilities and necessities each month, but you have no extra money to spend, save, or to use on emergencies.

In reality, experts suggest that your mortgage payment should be 25-30% of your take home pay, but there are a large number of people who are reaching far above this. This reach can put strain on your finances in other areas.

Figure Out What You Can Actually Afford

Usually the first step in the house hunting process is to go to your bank or a mortgage lender and get pre-approved for a mortgage. This will give you an amount you can spend on the home and the interest rate you’ll be paying. Here’s where some homeowners make a mistake. Just because you are pre-approved for a certain amount, doesn’t mean it’s wise to take the full amount. If you do, you could find yourself house poor.

Instead it’s a good idea for you to build a budget and figure out what sort of mortgage payment you would be comfortable with. This will help you figure out the purchase price range you should be looking into.

The house sale calculator tool from Roost Real Estate will allow you will allow you to plug in the annual interest rate, the percentage you plan to put down on the home, the sale price of the home, and the length of the mortgage. Once you’ve got all the numbers plugged in, it will show you what the monthly mortgage payment will be. This gives you a very clear and quick picture of what list price you will be comfortable with.

Take into Account the Variables

As you try to figure out what mortgage payment you’d be comfortable with, it’s also important to factor in the variables that happen in life. This is things such as losing your job, being unable to work for a set period of time, your consumer debt, the ability to grow your savings account, a budget for maintenance and repairs of the home, and even increases to the rate you pay for utilities. It’s all about giving yourself that cushion that will help to keep the house affordable and being prepared for the unexpected in life.

Secrets in Questions to Ask Home Inspector

Home inspection is needed to avoid unpleasant surprises when purchasing a property. An existing or newly constructed home is subject for inspection to make sure the sale is clean. It provides a statement that the house has no damages. This is also a good way in helping agents for the appraisal check of the property. First time individuals seeking for this kind of service usually prepare questions to ask home inspector.

A good way to start a query is by asking the qualifications. Home inspectors take part on some known national associations like ASHI and NAHI. Though the state has its own guidelines of practice, the different associations comply on the regulatory body of the profession. Real estate professionals know the importance of home inspection by competent, licensed inspectors. If a certified or professional home inspector is needed in California, Arizona or Fl., ASHI is the place to find the right home inspection companies in any state where the service is needed.

Finding the right one is easy. A property agent may recommend one. Family and friends can also give referrals. Yellow pages and online search can be of help too. But, the important in reality is to be able to check the expertise of the hired home inspector. Three to five choices can be the best way of finding the most appropriate home inspector.

The common question of the buyer to a home inspector is what the inclusion of the inspection will be. In standard practice, the assessment covers the condition of the home’s foundation and structural system, ventilation system, electrical system, plumbing system, checking the roofs, attic, ceilings, floors, walls, windows and doors. Then, a buyer may ask for a list of the things the inspector will do. Honest and direct to the point queries are more advisable to be able to have an idea on the flow of the inspection. Most of the time, good property inspectors discuss the findings while doing the process. This happens when the buyer is accompanying the home inspector.

Before the actual inspection, the buyer may ask the home inspector the kind of report the buyer should expect. There is no standard form, the kind of report depends on the home inspection company. Each entity has its own guidelines when it comes to formats. A report could be a handwritten checklist or computer generated report or report with or without pictures. Thus, the client should exert an effort to ask about this. For the usage of the report, it is use as a guide of the contractor for the repairs and improvements. The report can also be used for budgeting in terms of prioritizing what needs to be repaired first. On the part of the seller, the report is used for the appraisal of the house and the right evaluation is produced if the whole process of inspection is completed. To avoid any unexpected outlay of cost after acquiring a property, it is best to secure a complete assessment of the property. Questions to ask home inspector must be prepared. This is one of the most important task in conducting a due diligence in searching for the right house inspector.