A home inspection is an important process, and one that could save you a great deal of money potentially. However, the home inspection service can also cost several hundred dollars, perhaps more depending on the location and size of the property being inspection. It can therefore pay to ensure that the inspection company and the inspector that you select is one that has experience and a good reputation within the field of home inspecting.
There are a number of aspects and areas top consider when choosing a home inspector. Some of the areas to consider include:
Experience and knowledge: It is advisable to opt for an inspector that has a number of years of full time experience under his or her belt, with at least a couple of hundred inspection per year to show for it. A good inspector should also have knowledge and training in all areas of home systems and inspecting, so look for those that have trained on a broad range of systems and trades, and will therefore be familiar with all areas rather than just specialising in one.
Reputation and testimonials: Testimonials are a valuable way to check on the inspector’s good reputation, and obviously getting a testimonial from someone you know that has used the inspector is the most beneficial. Wherever possible, ask your friends and family whether they have used the services of a home inspector, and if they were satisfied get the details of the inspector from them. If this is not possible, ask the inspector for references from past clients before making a commitment, and wherever possible chase up on the reference to ensure their authenticity.
Asking for the right inspector: If you are booking your inspector from a home inspection company that hires a range of inspectors, make sure you ask for someone with as much experience as possible. Don’t assume that the company will send out the most experience person, and don’t be afraid to ask for someone with a number of years in the business. As before, you can also ask for references.
The speed of the inspection: This is another area that may impact upon your decision as to which inspector to select for your property. The inspection should be a thorough one, so the inspector that offers the fastest inspection will not necessarily be the best. This can be a time consuming task, and should take the inspector at least a couple of hours on average properties.
Liability cover: It can help you if the inspector that you use has general liability cover and general errors and omissions coverage, so ask about this and make sure you ask to see a copy of the cover policy to verify that this cover is in place.
The inspection report: If time is an issue, you should also find out how quickly the inspector will be able to get the report to you following the inspection of the property. There are a number of different report methods and formats used, but you main query should be when you actually get the report rather than what the format of the report will be.
The cost of the inspection: Of course, this will be a determining factor with many people. However, do remember that going with the cheapest without checking any of the other details such as experience and speed, may not necessarily pay off in the long run, and could actually end up costing you extra. Take cost into account as well, but do not use this as your main basis for selection, as there are far more important considerations.
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