If you are purchasing a home, it is vital to have the house inspected professionally before you seal the deal. Understand what is typically checked during a home inspection so you can ensure it is thorough.
Most home inspections actually start before the inspector walks inside the door. They will check for issues like standing water, which can indicate an issue with leaking pipes, a damaged septic system, or poor property grading. They will also check structures in the yard, such as garages, sheds, irrigation systems, paving, exterior stairs, and railings. If your home is on a private septic or water service, your inspector may also check these over, although separate inspections are typically recommended for septic and water.
After surveying the general exterior, the inspection usually moves to the roof. Gutters as well as roof penetrations like chimneys will be checked for damages and leaks. Your inspector will likely get onto the roof so they can check on the state of the shingles, soffits, fascia, and flashing. From there, the inspection usually moves indoors so they can go into the attic for an easier view of the underside of the roof and trusses.
Doors and Windows
The main point of door and window inspections is to make sure the frames are in good condition and that the weather sealing doesn't show any signs of wear or weakness. The glass will also be checked for damages, especially in the case of insulated windows. Your inspector will also make sure that the frames are still true, or level and not warped. Frames that are warped can indicate structural damage, such as from a sinking foundation.
A survey for obvious damages, such as damaged siding, is only part of the structural part of the inspection. Foundations and basement walls will be checked for cracks and signs of water leaks.
A basic plumbing inspection may only include a survey of the drains, water valves, and the hot water heater. The inspector may also verify that the meter is working correctly. More in-depth inspections must be done by a plumber.
HVAC is typically a major part of the inspection. Your furnace and air conditioner, along with associated services like air purifiers, heat pumps, and radiant heat systems, will be thoroughly inspected. The ventilation in the home, including bathroom vents and ductwork, will also be checked for any problems.
A simple electrical inspection is usually included with your standard home inspection. Your inspector will mainly be checking the breaker box o ensure it is up to date and wired correctly. They will also test the outlets and verify that bathroom and kitchen have GFCI outlets installed for safety reasons.
Contact a home inspector for more help.