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Make the Most of Your Home Inspection

Searching for a new home is an exciting time. You’ve been approved for a line of credit, have hired a realtor, scoured the listings, and finally found a home you love. You put in an offer and the rest is history, right? Not so fast...

One of the most important steps in purchasing a new home is the home inspection. Once you put in an offer on a home you love, you must hire a professional home inspector to thoroughly look over the home and property, alerting you to any possible issues.

Once you have the inspection report and are aware of any issues or necessary repairs, you must decide what to do next: do you cancel the contract and end the purchase process, request that the seller make the necessary repairs before the purchase can happen, or negotiate a price adjustment or purchase credit from the seller to address the home’s issues?

No matter what you decide to do, you will always be happy you had a professional home inspection before purchasing your new home. However, not all home inspections are the same.

Here are some tips for getting the best value from your home inspection:

Hire the Right Home Inspector
You may be surprised to learn that, in some states, a home inspector does not need a specific license or formal education. Don’t just hire the first inspector you find; do your research! Each state has specific requirements and certifications for home inspectors that you should look up online. Then, interview your potential inspector about their experience and qualifications, and ask to see a sample inspection report. This will ensure you get the best possible service and a complete overview of what is one of the largest purchases you will ever make.

Hearthstone Home Inspections’ Roger Kautz is committed to providing Wisconsin home buyers with the highest quality and best value inspection. He is a licensed Wisconsin inspector since 2004.

Attend and Participate in the Inspection
Don’t just sit back and let your realtor handle the inspection. Take this opportunity to learn more about your potential new home and what issues you can expect. The right home inspector is an expert in home quality from top to bottom. By following them and asking good questions about potential issues, you will be much better prepared to make the decision about whether this home is right for you and your family.

Do a DIY Inspection
In accompanying a home inspector as they survey your potential new property, it may be the first opportunity you’ve had to spend more than a few minutes walking through the home. In addition to following along on the professional inspection, grab a trusted family member or friend and do your own walkthrough inspection together. You may notice something that could make you question whether this home is right for you, and it is better to discover and address these issues before you close on your new home.

Create a Repair/Improvement Budget
As you follow the home inspector, make your own list of potential repairs, replacements, or upgrades to the home and their costs. Then, add up the costs and get estimates and bids from different vendors so you have an idea of how much you may spend once you own the home.  

Negotiate with the Seller
Once you’ve received your inspection report and understand what repairs or replacements need to be done on the home, bring this information to the seller. They may agree to complete these repairs, or issue you a purchase credit. They might also refuse to make the repairs. No matter what, having your inspection report will give you leverage in these negotiations, and give you the best chance for getting these repairs taken care of before you take ownership.

For questions or to schedule a quality home inspection today, call Hearthstone Home Inspectors at 262-366-3565.