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Home Inspections 101

What are home inspections?

Although it is unlikely that you would have heard of them, the concept of home inspections  is catching up quickly. Not just buyers, but even sellers are now willing to invest in quality home inspection services. A trained home inspector administers a visual examination of properties to identify flaws, faults and potential threats. It is the best way to check the condition of a property and get a clear picture of what you are investing in or if you are a seller, what you are delivering.

Home Inspection

What really happens when you appoint an expert to inspect your flat or apartment?

A licensed home inspector visits properties mostly before a sale or a purchase is made in order to conduct a property inspection. The inspection is a visual, non-intrusive examination of the property. The home inspector uses multiple tools and equipment in order to conduct a thorough analysis of the flat or apartment. The lookout is mainly for flaws, potential risks and vulnerable areas.

What does a home inspector look for?

A home inspector evaluates the present condition of all of the property’s major systems by conducting a thorough visual examination of every system and fixture that is accessible. An expert home inspector has an eye for detail and can spot flaws, potential threats and damages that we tend to otherwise oversee or ignore. Additionally, home inspectors use advanced equipment and tools for the inspection.

After administering a thorough examination of the property, the home inspection team puts together a detailed report of the findings resulting from the property assessment. The report is comprehensive and easy to understand for everyone. In addition, the team also provides photographs to help locate the problem area without any trouble.

However, one must make a note of the fact that a home inspector can only give you a status update on the current condition of the property, and cannot be held responsible for future damages and system failures. The report is effectively a snapshot of the house, recording the conditions on a given date and time. It cannot predict future behavior, and as such, cannot be held responsible for events that occur after the inspection. Unpredictable repairs should still be anticipated somehow though. This simply means that it is a good idea to get one’s home inspected often, ideally once every year.

This basic act of prudence not only proves to be economical but also goes a long way in providing a safe home environment for residents and their loved ones.

What aspects of home inspection are covered during the course of a professional property inspection?

Home Inspections

These are the following areas or systems that a home inspector examines:

Electrical Systems and Circuiting

While getting a home safety evaluation done, the first aspect that needs to be looked into is the property’s electrical system and circuiting. The home inspection expert checks for wear and tear that is visible on the fixtures, as well as, in the wiring system. Customers are updated on the necessary next steps, in case they need to redo the fixtures or examine DG fixtures before actually moving into their houses. However, customers need to install all their appliances beforehand if they want their DG performance report to be accurate. Also, if customers have toddlers and young children, their inspector helps in identifying potential risks and residents can then use those insights to childproof their house.

Exterior of the building/apartment

The home inspector also works on a careful inspection of the exterior of the building. Home inspectors look for any cracks or split in the walls, and also check the ceiling for any damages. This is vital as a proper assessment of the exterior of a building goes a long way in averting further damage by identifying and fixing issues on time. Secondly, early spotting and timely intervention save a lot of expenses. Whether one is buying a new property for investment or looking forward to making it their home, a pre-delivery check is definitely a good move.

Pest Control

Ants, termites, roaches, bees, mosquitoes and the common housefly: the list of creepy crawlies that infest homes are plenty. And what would one not do to keep them at bay! A licensed home inspector will help to do exactly that. Home Inspectors take a careful look at the property to see if it offers a safe haven for pests and give tips on what one can do to ensure that residences are pest-free. If residents have a garden area or a lawn, they need to get that inspected too. Getting one’s home screened for pests is surely an investment worth making. Once the analysis is done, one can go ahead and choose the apt pest control measures for his or her property.

Architectural Review

This wing of property inspection covers doors, windows, painting and other fixtures that define the architecture of a house. A squeaky window, a faulty door hinge, stains and patches that form on walls, damp spots and lot more defects along these lines get captured in a home inspector’s report. If a buyer is yet to make the house purchase then this property condition inspection helps in determining the appropriate value of the property.

Safety and Security Aspects of the property

Let us all admit it. The moment we think of ‘home’ we all think of a place that is safe and secure. But how can one be absolutely certain that homes are actually safe from all potential threats and dangers? That is where a home inspector steps in. With an expert eye, he or she can examine houses to verify safety aspects of the property. Maybe, all the multiple entrances to the property need to be manned, or a pair of railings are not child-friendly, or a boundary wall is too short and so on. Residents can look into all these aspects and take the necessary steps to ensure their home is safe and secure.

Structural Checks

Home safety evaluation includes an end-to-end examination of beams and columns of the property. Brick and block columns tend to spall at the ground level and one often misses to notice these faults. The home inspector looks for cracks, splits, hollow tiles, and signs of sagging or rusting along columns that will get worse if not fixed in time. Residents might notice a crack running up the wall every day but not make much of it. It takes an expert to spot a real issue amidst all the noise which is why one needs to invest in home analysis and give oneself the well-deserved gift of a secure home.

Plumbing

A broken pipe, followed by not knowing how to turn off the main source of water supply is every house owner’s nightmare. However, an eventuality such as this can be averted if one gets a home inspector to look for flaws by administering a plumbing inspection in the apartment. The licensed inspector closely examines plumbing fitting and fixtures for wear and tear and signs of damage. The water supply and distribution systems are also checked to ensure everything is in place. A smart home buyer will definitely get these checks done before the purchase of the property, and for those who have already moved into their new apartments, the second best time to get a home inspection done is ‘now’!

Environmental

Whether one likes it or not, everybody needs to shoulder the responsibility of caring for the planet we all call our ‘home’.  Eco-friendly lighting systems and solar heaters backed by building a culture of setting up sustainable systems is a must in today’s day and age. And with the right guidance from a qualified home inspector, one will be able to do all that and more. For example, replacing electric heaters with solar ones, updating lighting systems, finding out how to dispose harmful substances safely and so on. Ideally, everyone should get their houses inspected to ensure that they have the most environment-friendly property on the block. In the broader context, it aids in the direction of doing one’s bit for the planet today and teaching one’s kids to do the same.

Woodwork

A comprehensive home inspection also covers woodwork analysis. The home inspector reviews every fixture and furnishing to check for flaws and/or damages. In case the apartment has wooden steps, their stability and dimension also need to be looked into. Cabinetry, cupboards and other storage units may have faults or might need immediate attention due to wear and tear. The sooner these issues are fixed the better they are for the residents of the house. The dampness from any leakage might also prove detrimental to woodwork and needs to be checked in time.

In all, irrespective of what one’s next move with regard to real estate is, one should opt for a home sellers inspection depending on one’s need. It’s a small step towards ensuring safe, secure homes for all irrespective of whether one is a buyer or a seller.

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