Home Inspections: What to Expect
Top rated home inspection company, and here’s our complete home inspections checklist. Pass and fail along with what to expect from a local home inspector.
For expert home inspections from a knowledgeable and friendly professional reach out to Triple Check Home Inspections.
Table of Contents
What is a Home Inspection?
A home inspection is when a qualified home inspector assesses the condition of the property. This includes its HVAC systems, plumbing, electrical work, sewage, and some fire and safety issues. The home inspector will assess the physical structure of the home, from the foundation to the roof, as well as the home’s systems.
For home buyers, a home inspection is to evaluate the home and give a detailed report of the home’s condition, including an assessment of necessary or recommended repairs, maintenance concerns, and any other potentially costly issues. This assessment will determine if the home is up to code.
As for sellers, having an inspection done before putting their home on the market can afford them the chance to make structural repairs or upgrade and replace systems that may increase the likelihood of a sale.
Typically, a home inspection is done after a sales contract or purchase agreement between a buyer and a seller has been signed. For this reason, it’s important that the contract include an inspection contingency, which allows a buyer time to find an inspector, schedule, receive the inspector’s report, and decide how to proceed based on the information provided.
Home Inspections Checklist
For a full list of what we check during inspections click here.
This includes things like proper grading, no standing water, down spout drainage and driveway condition.
We check for any kind of bowing, visible foundation issues, straight door frames and windows, etc.
We look for dents, or cracks in vinyl siding. Stains, flaking paint or blisters, siding and stucco cracks, etc.
Windows, Doors, Trim
Wood frames and trim are secure, drip caps, storm windows, no broken glass, etc.
Condition of shingles, clean gutters, chimneys, no flashing or excessive roof cement, etc.
Sufficient insulation, signs of decay, any mold or mildew, adequate ventilation, etc.
We investigate the flooring, walls, electrical, heating and cooling systems, stains, cracks, insulation, etc.
Sink water flow, leaky pipes, exhaust fans, cabinet conditions, built in appliances, rust, garbage disposal, etc.
Exhaust fans, toilet condition, leaky pipes, tub or shower works and tiles are secure, stains, etc.
In the basement we look for signs of moisture, foundation stains/cracks/flaking, and that all visible wood is free of sagging or decay.
Visible pipes are checked for damage like leaks, stains, etc. Water heater and water pumps are inspected as well.
Your service panel and visible wiring will be inspected for condition and the possibility of “knob-and-tube” wiring.
Pros & Cons of a Pre-Listing Home Inspection
If you’re looking to sell your home, something that might have come to mind is getting a pre-listing home inspection. Not every home needs one and there are certainly some pros and cons to getting a home inspection before listing.
So let’s take a closer look.
- Can Uncover Needed Repairs: Doing a home inspection in advance of listing is a wise idea to identify any major problems that could stall the transaction. No house is perfect, and there is always some sort of issue that a buyer might want to address before closing.
- Save Money on Needed Repairs: In order to satisfy repairs-seeking buyers, you may have to lower your sale price or you may be in a hurry to finish your repairs, which means you have to pay a premium. Do your repairs in advance, and you’ll be more in control of your budget.
- Peace of Mind: It’s likely a potential buyer will still want to do a thorough inspection of their own even if you’ve had one completed before listing. It’s almost unavoidable. However, by having your home inspected beforehand, the chances of them stumbling upon anything major that was unforeseen is slim to none and can offer you both peace of mind and possibly a faster close.
- List your Home for More: The further you improve your house, especially if it is an important repair that your home inspector deems necessary, the higher your home’s value will be. It’s not impossible to see over a 100% return on spend with some of these. Larger fixes could include installing new appliances, roof, and a furnace. While smaller fixes might look like new vanities, replacing old blinds and fresh paint in a bedroom.
- Disclosures: Keep in mind that this varies by state, but often once you’ve unearthed a major issue with your home, you legally have to disclose it to any potential buyers. This includes structural issues, water damage, mold or even termite damage.
It’s likely these issues would’ve been discovered by the buyer anyways, however, being upfront about these issues can make the buyer more susceptible to negotiations and working through them as opposed to backing out entirely.
- Another Cost: If you live in a large home you could be footed a bill for north of $400 for a professional home inspection. Though this isn’t a large amount of money in comparison to other expenses that come along with selling/buying a home, it is still an added cost nevertheless.
If you decided to opt-out of getting a pre-listing inspection, the buyer might uncover something costly you didn’t know about, potentially causing hiccups in the deal.
Home Inspection Cost
National Average: Home inspections assess your home and provide a report summarizing the condition or value of your home based on key measurements. The national average cost for a home appraisal is $310.
Wisconsin Average: Knowing the home inspection costs is recommended before starting a home inspection project. While looking at national averages can help give an idea of possible cost of a home inspection, things such as local labor hourly rates, material costs and any local permits required for the Wisconsin home inspection project may affect the final price.
As our numbers show in 2021 average cost that homeowners paid for home inspection in Outagamie county is between $200 and $500. This ranges depending on the inspection company, your location and the size of your home. Home inspections can cost as little as $200 for an area of less than 1,000 square feet. Costs increase as home size increases:
- <1,000 square feet: $200-$250
- 1,000 square feet: $250-$300
- 1,500 square feet: $300-400
- 2,000 square feet: $450-$500
- >2,000 square feet: $500+
Sellers Home Inspection
Seller home inspections or commonly referred to as “pre-listing inspections” are becoming more and more popular each year.
This is thanks to their ability to eliminate almost all pitfalls and headaches associated with waiting for a buyer to order a home inspection of their own.
An inspector is employed by the seller and provides a report to the seller, who typically makes multiple copies and offers them to buyers upon touring the home for sale. This creates a win-win situation for both parties.
Home Inspector Certifications
Home inspections can prevent many challenges for both buyers and sellers. Finding the right home inspector is critical to find potential issues in a home, help ensure a fair sale and mitigate potential complications later on. Before you decide on a home inspector, however, you need to make sure you find the best, most qualified candidate. Here are some certifications and licenses your home inspector should have:
State license requirements require home inspectors to be licensed. Licensing is generally based on a minimum number of classroom hours performed, as well as passing an exam. Licensing and formal training shows an inspector’s commitment to their quality of work, as well as their extensive experience and knowledge within the field.
The licenses and certifications your home inspector holds are often a reflection on the quality of the work they can provide you. With the right training and accreditation, they can ensure the best possible home inspection.
American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI)
The American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI) is a respected home inspector association. It is the only organization recognized as a certifying body by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA). Membership with the ASHI allows home inspectors resources, continuing education and networking opportunities with other professionals in the field
International Association of Certified Home Inspectors (InterNACHI)
The International Association of Certified Home Inspectors (InterNACHI) is a non-profit membership organization for residential and commercial property inspectors. InterNACHI provides professional training, accredited education and certification to inspectors, to provide them credibility and continuing education to stay competitive within the inspection industry.
Why You’ll Love Us
Every problem our home inspector finds is followed with the best solution for you and your family. If you want to make the right decisions and save thousands of dollars work with the most experienced home inspectors around at Triple Check.
- Always on time
- Great at communication
- Thorough reporting
- Competitive pricing
Frequently Asked Questions
Home Inspection Guides
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Real estate is seen as an appreciating asset, however a property’s physical structure will eventually deteriorate over time and requires upkeep. Although some problems that arise will be apparent like a burst pipe or deep crack in the driveway not all of the wear and tear on a home’s inner workings are easily visible. We
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