Homes are selling quickly, and you may encounter a situation where you are unable to hire a home inspector until after you purchase the home. In this instance we have a
Free Home Inspection Checklist PDF
for Home Buyers – Print & bring to your walk-thru when you’re unable to have a professional inspection!
A Home Inspection Checklist is used to evaluate the major Systems and Components of a Home. From the standpoint of Financial Exposure, FOUNDATIONS are typically the most expensive to repair. Then ROOFS, WINDOWS, HEATING/ COOLING SYSTEMS, PLUMBING and ELECTRICAL.
In this era, where many homes are sold within hours of being on the market, you need to be ready to evaluate these systems yourself, often without a Home Inspection by an Experienced Home Inspector.
Most home buyers do not have the skills to perform their own Home Inspection, so if they cannot have a professional Home Inspection for whatever reason, they should consider that a bad roof can cost tens of thousands of dollars to replace.
- Foundation repairs can easily run $5,000 – $40,000 and more.
- Windows can often be $300 – $1,000 each to replace.
- Replacing Heating and Cooling systems can easily run $8,000 – $10,000 if you need to replace both.
- Roofs can have a 20 – 30 year life expectancy.
- Windows, Skylights & Heating/ Cooling systems can be 15 – 20 years before you are looking a replacement. Often they can last longer if they’ve been properly maintained.
- Electric and Plumbing systems can easily last 30-50 years with normal maintenance.
If you are currently in the market to purchase a home, it’s a good idea to ask your agent for a copy of the Seller’s Real Estate Condition Report prior to the Showing. That may disclose the age of the Roof, Mechanicals and known Structural or Basement Seepage.
What to bring to your own home inspection if you cannot bring a professional home inspector:
- A decent pair of binoculars to check the condition of the roof
- A 4 foot level to check the basement walls.
Even an untrained eye can often see granular loss on shingles. Just as important is the condition of the metal flashing. Is the flashing rusted are there holes in the flashing around the dormer sidewalls, the chimney and plumbing stack? If a basement wall is out of plumb by more than 1/2″, it may need to be braced.
If you purchase a home without a professional Home Inspection, I strongly suggest you have one as soon as possible after closing. You don’t want to pile belongings against a basement wall discover you need foundation repairs.
We’ve heard the expression; hope for the best and expect the worst. If you can afford $50,000 worth of repairs after the seller accepts your bid, you may be in great shape if the house is as nice as you’d hoped for.
Preview of the downloadable PDF:
Checklist HI Report 0312