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:

Bio: Entrepreneur | Speaker | Author | Instructor I am a modern day polymer, a nuevo "Renaissance Man." It is impossible for me to stick to any one thing when I am fascinated by the riches of the world (and I don't mean money), but I'm not interested in being labeled a "Jack of all trades." I have thoughtfully chosen to focus my energy on a few trades: military service (from ages 17 to 27), performing arts (acting, in both film and theatre, and music), entrepreneurship (real estate sales, mortgage finance, and appraising), education (K thru 12 and online real estate course creation and instruction), law, writing (I have published a few books, from pedagogy to romance, to network marketing (my present work-in-progress), and speaking (so far I have had the privilege of being an alumni guest speaker at two university events. Current Status: I am the Broker|Owner of Coleman Tanner Realty in Florida, as well as the Executive Director and Chief Legal Officer of REX Cinema Productions, based in Jacksonville, Florida. History: These are some of the titles I have/had in my life journey: Student, Actor, Musician, Drama Club Director, Author, Content Creator, Soldier, Sailor, Sales Associate, Store Manager, Appraiser, Real Estate Broker, Mortgage Broker, Attorney (non-licensed), Teacher, Dept. Chair, Executive Director, CEO, Father, Son, Brother, Cousin, and Nephew. Personality: I am purpose-driven. I love most people (despise some, though I try to mask it and eliminate it from my being.) My favorite color is blue, my favorite number is 3, and my favorite music is smooth jazz. I like cigars, bourbon (Jack Daniels) and scotch (12 year, single malt), wine (mostly red) and craft beer (mostly from Belgium and Germany). I LOVE to travel. Future Aspirations: When I grow up, I'd love to own a yacht so that I can more off the coasts of CinqueTerre, Italy and Marseilles, France, a luxe condo in downtown Miami, and a small Tuscan Villa on the water in Ponte Vedra Beach (or maybe Fernandina Beach, Sea Island, St. Simon's Island, or Jeckyl Island - pretty much somewhere in north Florida so my family and I can enjoy sitting by the fire pit outdoors while enjoying a good glass of wine, baked Brie, Manchego cheese, and prosciutto, and engage in excellent conversations.

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