Prepare For Your Inspection
As the Buyer : You made it to the inspection phase of the purchase. Now is a great opportunity to get to know, what could be your new home. A typical Home Inspection will take about 2-3 hours.
PREPARING FOR A HOME INSPECTION
A little knowledge can help decide how much you want to pay for a particular home or even if you should keep on looking. There is no perfect house but a lack of maintenance or upgrading can turn a dream home into a money pit. Should you decide to proceed with the purchase, this knowledge will help determine priorities and budgeting. Unexpected expense after closing can cause unnecessary financial distress.
The practice of Home Inspection has become very popular and is now recommended by most Realtors. It is important that you understand the process and how to prepare.
After the offer has been accepted and you are ready to book a home inspection, take a few simple precautions to prepare for an effective home inspection.
Make sure that your inspector is a member of a professional association, which requires them to adhere to professional standards and ethics. Ask about their background and training. Insist on being present during the inspection and ask questions about the scope of the report. Prepare a list of questions or problems you wish to discuss and inform the inspector of them. Will they be available after the report is given and even after you move in? Exact estimates for repairs are unrealistic at the time of the inspection but some indication of costs and priorities should be expected.
What is the process?
Prior to beginning the inspection the inspector will discuss with you the scope of the inspection, along with its limitations and exclusions, his fee and method of payment. He will need your signed consent to proceed based on the terms and condition set out in his authorization agreement.
How long will it take?
Typically the process takes 21/2 to 3 hours. However, homes that are older or larger, and those with substantial additions, renovations or difficult access areas, such as attics and crawl spaces, will take a little longer.
Who will attend?
Usually you and your agent along with your home inspector will attend. Although it is an opportunity to view the house again and to perhaps show family and friends, it is important that you focus on the home inspection. You will find that in addition to finding what you might consider to be deficiencies, your inspector will want to discuss with you recommended upgrades, repairs and improvements, and general home maintenance. It is also an opportunity to have your questions and concerns addressed by your inspector while a specific component or system is being inspected.
How and what will he inspect?
The exterior of the house is the normal starting point. The inspector may go up on the roof and then proceed around the outside. He will go into the basement and/or crawlspace to examine the major systems in the house including the structure, heating, air conditioning, insulation and ventilation, and the electrical and plumbing systems.
In addition to the work in the basement, he will go through the rest of the house and test all plumbing fixtures, operate windows and doors, look under sinks, in closets, and inspect the attic’s structural components, as well as its insulation and ventilation.
A more detailed explanation of what is inspected along with limitations and exclusions is more particularly described in the “Standards of Practice” of the “Ontario Association of Home Inspectors.”
Will I get a written report?
Yes. The report may be in book form or computer generated, it may be provided on site upon completion of the inspection, or within a day or so thereafter. Its format may be narrative, a checklist, or a combination of both. It will contain a copy of the authorization form which you signed prior to starting the inspection, and the actual inspection report.
Some reporting systems may contain additional information on conditions specific to your home, home maintenance tips and a cost guide that will give you a general idea of costs to replace components or systems in your home. This goes beyond the standards of practice and should be discussed with the inspector.
The content of the report is confidential, between you and your inspector, and cannot be released by the inspector without your written consent.
Most successful realtors spend a great deal of time and effort to match the right house to their client and a thorough home inspection by a conscientious, professional home inspector makes a positive experience even better.
Unless a major deficiency is revealed which cannot be overcome by negotiation, the inspection should be a positive experience providing useful information about the care and maintenance of your new home.
Good Luck and Happy House Hunting.
As the Seller :
Step One - Do not be home - ! Leave the property at least 1/2 hour before the scheduled inspection. Inspectors always arrive early to start the inspection from the outside.
Your home has been conditionally sold subject to an inspection. You need to prepare your home for the Home Inspection so that the buyers and the inspector will be able to comfortably go over all of the aspects of the house. The inspector will need free and clear access to things like the Attics, Knee walls, Crawlspaces, Utility rooms, Garages ( remove the car please ), All Bedrooms, Under the kitchen and bathroom sinks, Electrical panels, Hot water heaters, Furnaces or Boilers Etc..
Preparing for an inspection of your home
The practice of Home Inspection has become very popular, and as a result you should expect one to be performed on your home. You should understand the process and how to prepare.
Who will attend?
Usually the Buyer and the Buyer’s Agent, along with the Home Inspector will attend. It is preferable that the Seller not be present for the inspection.
How long will it take?
Typically 2 ½ to 3 hours. Homes that are older, larger, and those that have substantial additions, renovations or difficult access areas, such as attics and crawl spaces will take a little longer.
How and what will he inspect?
The exterior of the house is the normal starting point. The Inspector may go up on the roof and then proceed around the outside. He will go into the basement and/or crawlspace to examine the major systems in the house, including the structure, heating, air conditioning, ventilation, and the electrical and plumbing systems.
In addition to the work in the basement, he will go through the rest of the house and test all plumbing fixtures, operate windows and doors, look under sinks, in closets and inspect the attic’s structural components, as well as its insulation and ventilation.
A more detailed explanation of what is inspected along with limitations and exclusions are more particularly described in the “Standards of Practice” of the “Ontario Association of Home Inspectors.”
How you can prepare:
Provide access and adequate lighting to all parts of the home including basement and garage. Replace any burned out or missing bulbs.
Provide documentation pertaining to replacement or maintenance of components or systems as well as copies of any warranties that are transferable to the buyer.
A clean fireplace or wood stove is easier to inspect.
Most importantly, provide unobstructed access to the following:
- main water service entrance, including meter and shut-off valve, or if a rural property, the well water entrance, pressure tank, etc.
- hot water tank
- shut off valves to external hose bibbs
- floor drain or sump pump
- provide access to storm and sanitary sewer drains, or if a rural property, the septic tank main drain cleanout plug
- electrical service entrance, including main distribution panel and any sub panels. (They could be located in the garage, basement, outbuildings, or, in older homes, in bedroom closets.)
- furnace or boiler, including vent connectors, chimneys and fuel storage tanks (oil and propane)
- air conditioner (exterior and interior components)
- air exchanger or Heat Recovery Ventilator
- attic hatch - especially those located in closets, Removal of clothes and storage is recommended
- access to crawl space, if applicable
- interior surface of foundation walls where practical
with your assistance and preparation, the Home Inspection will be faster, more efficient and a more pleasant experience for all participants.