5 Types Of Home Inspections For Buyers
February 04, 2022Unless you're purchasing a home "as-is," the home inspection can be one of the most important factors protecting your investment. While not required during the escrow process, home inspections are highly recommended. This allows you to determine if the property will require extensive repairs and whether the current owner should make the repairs, the price is reduced so you can make them, or the damages make purchasing the property no longer feasible. However, there are many different types of home inspections, and not all of them are as necessary. To help determine what's right for your case, our title agency has outlined the different types of inspections and when they may be necessary.
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Home InspectionTo begin with, the most common home inspection is just a visual inspection of the easily accessible parts of the home, which includes the following.
- Building Exterior
- Landscaping Components
- Electrical System
- Major Appliances
- Attic & Insulation
- Fireplaces & Wood Stoves
- Walls & Ceilings
- Windows & Doors
Because this type of inspection only covers easy to reach areas, it may not provide great insight for areas of harder access, such as the inside of a chimney or inside the walls.
Pest InspectionPests, such as termites, can be a nightmare for homeowners, resulting in expensive property damage that can compromise the integrity of the home's structure. If termites are common near you or have noticed potential signs of termites, a termite inspection, also known as a wood-destroying organism inspection (WDO), may be prudent. If you are using a VA or FHA loan, A WDO might be required.
Mold InspectionIf any leaks or areas of concern from water saturation were uncovered during the home inspection, a mold inspection should be your next step. Mold spores grow in dark, wet areas, usually on organic material, such as wood, meaning mold often grows in areas that aren't visible and may be hard to reach, such as under flooring or behind walls. It is important to deal with mold before you move in, as it can cause damage to the property and can pose health risks for you and your family.
Foundation InspectionDuring the home inspection, the inspector will look for potential issues at the home's foundation, such as drainage, cracks or damage, and nearby tree roots that may have grown into the foundation. If they uncover anything of note, they may suggest having the property inspected by a residential structural engineer. A foundation inspection may be the most expensive type of inspection, averaging about $500 depending on location, but can be well worth the investment if the foundation has structural damage.
Radon InspectionRadon is an odorless, colorless gas that comes from the gradual breakdown of radioactive elements, and nearly 1 in every 15 homes has high radon levels. Radon is toxic and can lead to respiratory ailments, such as lung cancer. The EPA states radon exposure is the second leading cause of lung cancer after smoking. Long-term radon tests take 90 days to complete, but you won't have that time when trying to close on a home. Professional, short-term testing can take just 48-hours. You can also use an off-the-shelf kit, but it will need to be sent to a lab for results.