Posted in Real Estate Sales Tips

Do I Need a Home Inspection?

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Doing Your Due Diligence?

 

In Florida, home sellers (and their listing agents) are required to disclose any defects that are not readily observable and materially affect the property value. (Ch. 475.2701, F.S.) With that being said, there may be times when certain defects are unknown to the current homeowner.

The home inspection is a major step in the due diligence process of purchasing real property and serves to protect the buyer from expending money on a property that may be worth less than anticipated if material defects later become known. Moreover, oftentimes the lender will require a home inspection and/or a Wood Destroying Organism (WDO) report prior to approving a loan for closing.

Q:  What does a home inspector examine?

A:  The home inspector will examine the exterior and interior construction of the property, the mechanical and electrical systems, as well as the plumbing system. Below is a list of the common elements observed during a home inspection.

Exterior Inspection:

  • Topography and foundation or crawlspace
  • Driveway, sidewalk, porch & patio areas
  • Walls, siding, trim, windows & doors
  • Roof
  • Garage(s) and/or carport(s)

Interior Inspection:

  • HVAC and/or wall unit(s)
  • Electrical system
  • Plumbing, well/septic system
  • Energy efficiency

Environmental Inspection:

  • Radon gas
  • Lead-based paint
  • Asbestos
  • Radiation
  • Other external concerns

Are home inspectors licensed?

A:  In the state of Florida, home inspectors are required to be licensed. Check with your state’s division of licensing or ask your local real estate agent.

Action Steps:

  1. Use a Seller’s Property Disclosure Statement when you are buying/selling a residential property.
  2. During your walk-through, inquire of any observable defects/recent repairs.
  3. Contact your local government’s permitting department to inquire of any open/closed permits on the subject property. The most important aspect of this step is to ensure that any work done in the past was permitted, up to code, and that all permits are closed. Finding out there is an open permit prior to closing can cause delays and frustrate the closing process, not to mention the potentially high repair costs that may surface.

In closing, it is highly recommended you hire a licensed, insured, and experienced home inspector, ask the seller for a property disclosure statement, and check the property history with your local permitting department. While these tasks may be a bit tedious, your real estate professional should be there to guide you through the process and ensure that you have a smooth closing!

 

Author:

John holds four degrees and two decades of technical education, and has extensive experience in the fields of real estate property valuation, mortgage finance, and home sales, and is the Broker-Owner of Coleman Tanner Realty 🏡 in Florida. John was recently admitted into the NYU film school’s 1-year online certificate program in Film & TV Essentials, as well as completed the 14-Day Filmmaker Academy by the legendary tv commercial gurus, Paul Xavier and Anthony Gallo. 🎥 He plans on shooting social media video commercials that documents and highlights the journey to success of many high performance attorney entrepreneurs, as well as lead an in-house film production company for his real estate practice, Coleman Tanner Realty. 🎬 Lastly, John aspires to self-produce independent films that will be a hybrid of the “film noir, murder mystery genre” and something new, futuristic, and aesthetically appealing to modern day film enthusiasts. (Ladies, he also enjoys romantic comedies and dramas too, - and he wrote a romantic novella titled Faithfully (available on Amazon) - so stay tuned!) When he’s not 🖥 online studying film production and marketing techniques, or watching movies and TV shows on the tube 📺 for inspiration, 🎼John also enjoys playing the guitar 🎸 and piano 🎹 in his free time.

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