Some buyers waiving the home inspection

Green Escrow | Home inspection

While waiving the home inspection has been a tactic to possibly make an offer more attractive in a competitive bidding war, these days it’s often used simply to get the deal done.

Home inspectors are currently in high demand throughout the country; many are booked for weeks ahead. A buyer’s contract typically gives them only seven days to get an inspection completed and some are waiving the inspection in order to complete the deal.

Most states didn’t allow inspections from March through May due to shelter-in-place restrictions so the backlog and current busy housing market have slowed things considerably.

Experts warn that while waiving the inspection may speed things up, it can be very costly for the buyer in the long run if there are defects in the home.

Home inspection tips

Green Escrow | Home inspection

Congratulations! You’ve found a home you like, your offer has been accepted and now it’s time for the home inspection. Of course, you’ll want to hire a certified, experienced inspector and keep an eye out for the following:

  • Structural issues: cracks in the foundation, open gaps around windows or doors, leaning stairs or decks
  • Roof and chimney: signs of leakage or poor ventilation
  • Water damage: signs of structural damage, mold and rot
  • Plumbing and sewer: leaky pipes, clogged sewer lines, poor water pressure
  • Electrical systems: Old, out-of-code and faulty wiring, ground fault circuit interrupters where needed
  • Infestations: signs of insect or rodents
  • Hazardous substances in older homes: lead paint, radon, asbestos

What a home inspection might miss

Green Escrow | Home inspection

Home inspections are standard procedure when purchasing a house but Trulia has an excellent article on eight potential problems that an inspection might miss. Below are highlights; check out the excellent article Home Inspection Problems for a full description.

  • Roof
  • HVAC
  • Water damage
  • Flooring
  • Appliance performance
  • Asbestos
  • Noxious gases
  • Drainage issues

The Importance of a Home Inspection

Green Escrow | Home inspection

Typically, home purchases require a home inspection. The most common purchases that might skip an inspection involve buyers of new home and buyers that receive a warranty. That being said, many housing experts argue that every purchase offer should be made with a home inspection contingency clause.

Of course, major problems that a seller refuses to rectify can cause an offer to be withdrawn. Minor problems can result in a lower price being negotiated.

Often, a home inspection is confused with an appraisal. Basically, an appraisal is for the benefit of the lender to assure that the value on the house is greater than the requested loan. Typically, an appraisal involves the overall value of the home, in comparison with the neighborhood, and does not take into account the performance of mechanical systems.

Conversely, a home inspection is for the benefit of the buyer so that they might make an informed decision before actually making the purchase.

Often times a seller may schedule an inspection before putting the house up for sale so that they know what issues must be addressed.

In the big picture, a home inspection is good for both buyer and seller.