Your home inspection can set you up for success as a homeowner. During your inspection, you’ll learn more about your new home, become aware of potential issues, and get an idea of what you might need to replace or fix when you move in. Here, we’ll take a look at a few questions you’ll want to ask your home inspector to ensure that you’re learning everything you need to know before you finalize the purchase of your new home.
Is this a major or minor issue?
As you walk through the house with your inspector, they’ll point out issues. If you’re not a contractor, likely, you won’t know what’s a big deal—and what’s not. As your inspector points out issues, ask them whether you’d be able to fix them yourself or if you’d need to hire a professional.
How do I maintain this aspect of the house?
If you’ve never had a basement, deck, HVAC unit, sump pump, or other home feature before, and the element exists in your new home, ask your inspector what you’ll need to know about maintenance. It’s unlikely that you’ll come up with a question your inspector hasn’t heard before. You don’t want to find yourself standing in your home in a few months, wishing you spoke up and asked questions.
If you were buying this house, what would be your biggest concern?
Your inspector deals with home maintenance issues every day, and it’s smart to ask their personal opinion on the home you’re thinking about buying. For example, if the inspector tells you they’d simply ask the seller to fix a few issues before closing, you can feel pretty good about how the inspection went. On the other hand, if the inspector tells you they’d think twice about buying a house that needs so much work, you might want to take a step back and rethink whether you’re ready to take on a home that requires such a high level of repair.
Who should I call next?
Your inspector may recommend bringing in a contractor, plumber, or another expert who can look at issues and give you further guidance. If your inspector recommends this, you’ll likely be able to get the home seller to cover this cost. Talk with your realtor about how to move forward with contacting other experts who can provide you with more information on the state of your new home.
What should be my priority when I move in?
Your inspector will be able to talk to you about what needs to be fixed right away—and what can wait. Ask them how they’d prioritize any repairs. If you’re working on a limited budget, ask them what repairs can wait until you recoup your spending money on your down payment and closing costs.
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