Home Inspection FAQ’s
Q. What is a Home Inspection?
A. A thorough, visual examination of the structure and operating components of the home performed by a trained, certified professional, detailed in a Home Inspection Report with photos and descriptions of condition of home from roof to basement.
Q. How do I choose a Home Inspection Company?
A. You should choose an inspection company with a lot of experience to make the process move smoothly, you should ask about their education and training, what certifications do they have, what type of inspection report do they use and does it include photos, how long has the company been in business and ask for references.
Q. Why should I have a home inspection?
A: There are several reasons. Buying a home is a significant financial obligation that should involve careful consideration. Among the important factors of location, crime rate, schools, proximity to work, taxes and so forth, the physical conditions and operational states of the systems and components must be evaluated. This is where an independent inspector can offer critical information that can either validate everything is okay or repairs are needed that can possibly be negotiated. It’s a known fact consumers routinely make decisions based on emotion. We offer technical information (independent of emotion) that can position clients to make an educated and sound decision. The American Society of Home Inspectors Association performed an extensive nationwide study that stated the returned value of a home inspection at just over $1,500. Given the average fee for an inspection is $400, this is not only a good value but it provides Peace of Mind and possibly negotiable repairs.
Q. Shouldn’t I have the home inspection before I make an offer so I will know how much to offer?
A: This is somewhat difficult to answer depending on your particular circumstances. However, in most cases, buyers have a contingency in the purchase contract that not only allows for the inspection to take place but also allows the buyer to either negotiate repairs for discovered discrepancies or simply walk away from the deal. Consulting with your professional realtor is the best option.
Q. Is there a uniform service agreement or contract for a home inspection?
A: Yes. Anytime you spend money on the purchase of a property and it involves a service, a contract is strongly encouraged and almost expected. In our case, we adhere to the Standards of Practice for the American Society of Home Inspectors aka; ASHI to ensure compliance and thoroughness. The agreement should clearly outline what the inspector should be doing during the inspection as well as stipulations outside the boundaries of the inspection (such as making repairs on discovered items needing repair, which clearly constitutes a conflict of interest).
Q. How much does a typical home inspection cost?
A: Since 1997 we have refined our pricing model to offer the best pricing based on some criteria. This includes the size of the home, how many bedrooms and baths, decks or porches, garage, age of the home, foundation type, finished basement, and where the property is located. Give us a call and we can quote your home inspection.
Q. Does the seller have to repair all items listed on the inspection report?
A: No. Everything in a real estate transaction is negotiable. Typically the realtors are the instrument in negotiating any necessary repairs.
Q. Will the inspection report include the cost of repairs?
A: No. Inspectors should only do what they do best, educating and reporting items of concern. We are not contractors we’re home inspectors. We may not know current material costs or an accurate amount of time required to perform a given repair. We encourage our clients to request repairs be performed by a qualified contractor and ask for receipts or share our professional report with a contractor your realtor may have recommended or we can suggest a contractor which is on our list of Contractors We Know to get an accurate cost of repairs to help make your decision.
Q. Will the lender see the home inspection report?
A: No. Our clients pay for the information in the report. Usually, we send a courtesy copy to their agent and nowhere else.
Q. Can we ask the home inspector to alter or omit items in the report if we do not want them to become issues with the lender?
A: Our Company will not agree to do that. We operate by the highest Standards of Ethics and will not compromise our integrity or fiduciary responsibility to tell the truth.
Q. Does the buyer need to be on site during the home inspection?
A: We encourage our clients to attend the inspection and see what the inspectors see and if you have questions about an item you may not understand or just need clarification the inspector can answer those questions onsite. The inspector will show you where the water, gas, and electrical shut offs are located. The HVAC filters are also important items to know where they are located. Many clients aren’t season buyers and need to know where each item listed above are located and how often filters should be replaced. However if the client chooses not to be there that is fine also for us as experienced inspectors we will show in the report the location of those items listed above also you may feel free to call and ask the inspector for clarification on items you have questions on.
Q. How long does an inspection take to complete?
A: It depends on age, size, and foundation type and how well the property has been maintained or neglected. Our typical inspections last between 2.5 to 4 hours. We stay onsite until we feel we have comprehensively evaluated the home.
Q. What happens after the inspection?
A: We at Southern Home Inspection Services believe that once our clients establish a relationship with us, it is timeless and endless. We offer technical advice for as long as our clients like. Our inspectors have a vast amount of accumulated knowledge and expertise that we want to share.
Q. Are all inspectors equally capable and knowledgeable?
A: Home Inspectors are not equal. It is true something one technician may see another may not. Unfortunately, Georgia is a non-licensed and an unregulated state regarding home inspections. Consequently, there are inspectors that are operating and advising their clients without proper training or knowledge. A professional home inspector should be knowledgeable in the many different types of building design and be able to identify defects caused by natural aging, usage, and amateur modifications.
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Southern Home Inspection Services will be your home buying or selling advocate! We are committed to providing you with outstanding service. We’re highly experienced and extremely thorough. If you’re looking to buy or sell in the Metro Atlanta Area, we can help!
Owned and operated by Anthony and Tona Dobson, who pride themselves on being committed to following high standards and providing professional service to all of their customers.
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