Whether you’re buying or selling a home, finding the right home inspector can make a big difference in the transaction. Their findings can help you avoid a costly pitfall, catch issues before they become crises, and keep your family safe.
1. How many inspections have you performed?
Get a sense of the home inspector’s level of experience: how long they have been in the business, and if they are licensed and insured. Make sure you feel confident in the expertise they’re bringing to your situation.
2. What is your background?
Find out how they got into the home inspections industry, and if they have any specializations that will give them extra insight. Brian at Zoom came to the field with decades of experience in the construction industry and as a general contractor, and uses that depth of knowledge about different building materials, structural best practices, and more in all his inspections.
3. What exactly do you look for?
Talk to them to understand what to expect from an inspection. In addition to structural issues, potential safety hazards, and improper installation, what might they find? Discover some common issues and what you might do to resolve them. And keep in mind, your home inspector will do a visual inspection only—they can’t tear anything open!
4. Are you background verified?
Reassure yourself by learning if the inspector of your choice has had a background check to verify there are no red flags on legal or ethical grounds. This is helpful whether you are buying or selling your home.
5. Do you offer any other services?
Find out if your home inspector offers other services that might be useful to you. For example, do they offer structural pest inspections, infrared camera inspections or sewer scopes? One popular supplemental service that Zoom offers is reports on the cost of repairs needed to the home being inspected. To help resolve the common home buyer challenge of not knowing the cost of repairs found during the inspection, Zoom clients can now elect to receive a report within 24 hours detailing cost estimates that can help buyers with budgeting and vendor negotiation.
6. What is the cost of the inspection and what does your fee include?
Usually, the cost of a home inspection is based on the size of the home—the larger the home, the higher the cost. Typically, a home inspection cost for a single family residence will be between $400 to $800 in the Seattle metro area. Some inspection companies charge extra for additional services, so understanding the add-on fees can help you get to the bottom line. Zoom provides all clients a structural pest inspection and thermal imaging (infrared camera) inspections at no additional fee.
7. Can you address my specific concerns?
Tell your home inspector about any specific worries you have, or questions you’d like them to address. A good inspector will educate you on the issues they find, and keep your concerns in mind as they do the inspection.
8. May I receive the written report the same day?
The home inspection contingency is a very time-sensitive part of the home purchase. Once the visual inspection is complete you will have many decisions to make, so receiving the inspection report quickly can be very helpful in deciding how to move forward with the transaction. Zoom prides itself on being quick and complete, and to this end we always rush the report within 24 hours or less. Ask for an example report from the inspection company. This way you can make sure the report layout (photos, videos, and comments) will be presented to you in an easy-to-read and organized fashion.
9. What if I have follow-up questions?
Find out ahead of time if you can contact the home inspector in the weeks to come with any questions that arise.
10. What are your COVID-19 safety protocols?
In our current environment of social distancing and preventative measures, what is the home inspector doing to protect everyone’s health? Do they have new policies and protocols in place? Have they received COVID-19 safety training? Make sure the answer you receive gives you peace of mind.
We hope these questions have given you a good starting place when talking with home inspectors. Buying or selling a home can be a stressful experience, but with a little preparedness the home inspection can be a breeze.
If you have more questions, or would like to schedule a consultation with us, visit here.